Northumberland National Park

This is night No 72/2018 living in my caravan. This is my second night staying at the River Breamish C&MC Site.

Got up at about 0600 to a stunning morning. Hardly a breath of wind, clear, and quite chilly.

The site was very quiet at around 0630 when I took the dogs around the 'Nature Trail' formed around the site. A nicely routed network of paths around a wetland area, woods, and the River Breamish.

The River Breamish on the walk around the site.

After breakfast, I was keen to get out into the National Park proper, and tackle a route from my guidebook. Liked the look of Brough Fell, so we headed for the short drive to the other side of Branton Lakes and parked up near Ingram. The information board had plenty of detail of where we could walk.

It's a nice place where the Park Authority have made a carpark with a toilet block.

Headed steeply up the first section. This hill is also the location for an annual fell race, probably being a short steep hill to bag. Then, for us, disaster! Up ahead across the path between us and the summit was a herd of cattle and I could see one with a calf. They were shoulder deep in the bracken, so I couldn't see them all. With 2 dogs, there's no way I'm going near cattle on open moorland.

So, plan B. Thrunton Wood further south was the target. Interestingly, on the way back from Ingram, I stopped to take a picture of the ancient cultivated terraces on the side of Heddon Hill. You see a lot of these around here and also what I would describe as evidence of the 'runrig' system of farming, with strips of land between furrows.

Thrunton Wood is about 15mins away. Some really nice walks in a big, hilly forest.

A few benches places next to lovely viewpoints.

I think this big boulder forms part of the Thrunton Crags. Maybe 10ft high.

From the forest, I wanted to visit Alnwick. I've never been here before and it's maybe 20mins from the site. A fine well preserved town with a cracking market square.

Some fine old fashioned shops and buildings. Parked up and walked the dogs around the streets in some fine weather.

After lunch, I looked through my book and liked the look of Harbottle West Wood. Harbottle, like Ingram is right on the edge of the National Park, another gateway to the hills.

This view looks over Harbottle with it's ruined castle. Built by Henry II when the Scots were giving the English a bit of a doing!

The views are stunning. This is from the summit of Harbottle Hills.

The famous (?) Drake Stone. A huge erratic which is claimed to have mythical magical powers. There were a few climbers on it when I arrived.

Harbottle Lake which we walked past on the right.

Looking back at Drakes Stone before continuing north.

There's lots of these posted around. Looking at the map, you can't wander where you want. You must stick to 'permissible paths'.

Great path though. Peaty with grainy stone.

Limestone in places.

As we approached the MOD ranges, we were directed east towards an old forest.

Great wood for a wander though.

Typical Northumbrian wall. There's a lot of beautifully crafted stonework throughout this area.

We descended back down towards the road on what's called 'The Swire'.

The village of Alwinton and it's stunning church.

It was a great circular walk, and the dogs got a great long blast off lead. Probably took around 90mins with a stiff grunt to get up to Drake Stone!

Headed back through Harbottle, then Rothbury (which I hope to visit over the next few days), then back to the site.

Some great walking today.


  1. That’s a lot of walking! Hope you’re still enjoying being in your shorts!x


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