Today we have been on a walk with a difference. A walk around the Yorkshire Sculpture Park Now funnily enough I had recently seen some photographs online which had been taken at the Sculpture park and thought ‘I’d love to go there!’ but I hadn’t realised just how close it is to where we live, and so I was very pleased that this week it had been chosen as our venue for our Saturday walk As always we went there with some of the other members of C.R.E.W , and K and I were picked up this morning by R and G at 09.45am because it takes roughly three quarters of an hour to drive there.
When we arrived at the Park, we were the first ones there so we waited for the other members who were also going on the walk to arrive. There were only seven of us taking part on this walk, as some of the other members were on holiday and others thought it was too far to get to.
Once we were all assembled, we waited for the Mini Bus to arrive, as we planned to begin our walk at the far side of the Park which you could see in the distance. No Mini bus arrived, but instead a Land Rover pulled up, and one of the Park staff alighted and told us all that the Mini bus had broken down and so we would all have to climb into the Land Rover instead . This was no mean feat, especially for K who had to be given a hefty ‘push up’ from behind in order to climb up into the back.
Eventually we arrived at the other end of the Park, and after entering the Longside Gallery to view the sculptures and paintings on show inside we then began our walk. The weather was being very kind to us as showers of rain had been forecast, but in order to foil this prediction I had cunningly brought along my brolly! (Guaranteed to keep the smallest spots of rain at bay) Our walk took us through a small wood called the Round Wood which houses the Outclosure, a strange stone built structure which has no entrance to it, therefore inhibiting you from being able to see what’s inside it. Of course this prompted a couple of the men to begin jumping up and down trying vainly to see what was inside.
We continued on and next we arrived at the Basket, a rather strange sort of small tower complete with spiral staircase inside (K’s favourite climb!) The whole tower is constructed entirely of metal and mesh. We all climbed up the spiral staircase (luckily for K, only 15 steps high) and peeked through the mesh at the fantastic views before making our way down again to continue the walk There were actually two walls inside made of mesh, one inside the other with a small area between them both, and of course this prompted K and I to make our way in-between them both with the result that K (complete with her usual backpack) nearly became stuck at one point!
Along this part of the route are numerous old fallen trees which are surrounded by stone walls. These are referred to on the map that we all had a copy of as the Hanging Trees but why I haven’t a clue because you certainly couldn’t hang anything from them in their current prone and fungus covered state! We were now slowly descending via a path through the woods, made fairly muddy by yesterdays downpour, and this also included some steps to negotiate. Eventually this descent brought us to the Dam Head bridge which crosses the end of the Lower Lake and the Dam.
The intention here was to now make our way back to the main Centre for our lunch via the Lower Park route but this was inaccessible, and so we had to make the ascent through the Henry Moor in the Country Park, and this steady climb was quite tiring necessitating frequent stops and rests on the way up. We had passed lots of ducks during this part of the walk, both in the water and out of it, and I remarked that I had never seen as many ducks gathered together in my entire life. Eventually we reached the Main Centre exhausted (and hungry!) where we all sat down to our meal. K and I had the chef’s special, Meat and Potato Pie with potatoes and green vegetables (me) whilst K just had the Pie with roast potatoes (no green vegetables because this contained peas which she insists she can’t eat.)
The other members of the group then decided to go back home, but we decided to stay with R and G and have a look around the Formal Gardens and the other Galleries there. Lot’s of the sculptures can also be found in the grounds of the gardens. When we had finished our walk around the Garden Galleries, we then made our way back to the restaurant and enjoyed a refreshing drink and an ice cream sat outside on the small terrace area of the restaurant admiring the stunning views over the countryside.
Eventually it was time to make our way back to the car for the drive home. This walk was a very different one to the usual Saturday walks which tend to be made in our local area. Because it took place in the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, which afforded a beautiful walk through not only some stunning countryside but also littered with very interesting exhibits and sculptures, I rate today as one of my most enjoyable walks that we have made, and I plan to return there again, next time perhaps with J in tow. Now where is that Metro route planner? More pictures of the day in my SkyDrive and at the bottom of my Space.