Sensing the Park

Today I visited the Whin Sill, Moss Peteral and Thirwall castle which are all within the Hadrian's Wall area of the park. Myself and Georgia began by climbing up to the top of the Whin Sill. Wow - it took my breath away, quite literally! This past week I haven't been doing much exercise (touring around Germany in a van with The Shee) and the hike to the top was invigorating, challenging but incredibly satisfying once I had reached the top to admire the view. The wind was howling and the clouds looked ominous, grey and heavy. We decided it would be best to climb back down before the rain set in.

Later in the day we were joined by one of the Rangers of the park. Together we drove up to a farm called Moss Peteral. I was greeted by a big flock of turkeys which were presumably being fattened-up for Christmas dinners. As we walked through the farming field, past a flock of sheep, I began to see a soft orange coloured carpet. I was told this was a blanket bog, sometimes referred to as a mire. I could see patches of black around the edge that looked like black butter. This was of course peat and it is incredibly ancient. I was amazed when I was told that we know what the environment was like millions of years ago through sampling peat deep down into the bog. The park has found ancient birch trees in the peat which means that these trees were living at one point in the area.

I will be taking a walk up to the Henhole on Friday, so stay tuned for some more ramblings about my rambles in the park!


AuthorShona Mooney