Monday, April 12, 2010

The Bridestones

The Bridestones, both high and low are a group of stones up on the moor. We took the turning out of Sleights to Grosmont, and drove along an up and down road by the side of one of the deep combes that is so characteristic of the valleys below the moors. Though I expect there is a proper word for these steep sided small valleys - but in Somerset we call them combes. Cottages cling to the side of the valley their gardens terracing down, until eventually you arrive at the small village of Grosmont with its train station. This of course is a steam train which brings the tourists in to wander around, though there is not much to see except a couple of book shops. We learnt later that one of the buildings (the reading room) here belonged to a friend of my son-in-law, in fact his gallery in Whitby is called the Reading Room, but Grosmont seemed to be a visiting spot for tourists, just like Goathland.
Turning back out of the village we climbed up the lane to the top of the moors, over the cattle grid, and found the stones amongst the heather and bogs, something you have to be careful about.
I'm not sure what to say about the stones, five in a circle (High Bridestones) but only one standing slightly crooked but square angled, as were the other stones on the ground. Reading other peoples impression of the stones up on the moors and they seem disappointed by the jumble of stones, its hard to make out any sense of the stone row of the Low Bridestones, it may even be a stone wall, such as you find in Wales.
I liked the stones they are narrow and not too tall, graceful and chosen for a specific reason, the land would have been different when they were first erected and the sense of space and the grandeur of the scenery must have been awe-inspiring. The barrow which sits at the turning off the main Whitby to Pickering road can be seen from here. It has a height marker on top, and apparently has been excavated again and again but there have been no finds - perhaps it was an early B/A marker cairn.

The photos show a lovely sunny day, but not the cold wind that whipped across the moor, and I also took of a photo of a large black/white bird that suddenly rose from the heather (no not a magpie!) but it seems to have flown the photo....


  1. These last couple of posts have reminded me of a great holiday we had on the North Yorkshire Moors and Whitby. Has made me quite keen to return sometime this summer! Looks like a really good break for you all. Glad the sun shone. Lesley

  2. Want to go back again;) missing all my family already Lesley. Would'nt live by the sea but those little Yorkshire stone houses look comfortable..