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Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Coasties go extreme, over the edge we go

Today we are clearing a 'path' on the strange piece of land below the main cliffs at Ravenscar, Beast Cliff it is called, why? who knows? There really is a public footpath amongst the trees and beneath the bramble and other overgrowth; there are also tracks used by fishermen and other used by badgers. First we scramble down, cutting and clearing as we go, then we zig zag along to reduce the slope of the path. All the time we can hear the waves on the shore and the scream of the disturbed sea birds.

I joke with our ranger about the times I have moaned about being so far from the sea, today we are close to it all day. This really is my favourite bit of the park.

We move along a slightly flatter section, lots of willow trees here and bramble in profusion. Someone points out walkers on the Cleveland Way, high above us, they are watching us, unfortunately they are too far away to see the expression on their faces. We wonder if a circular walk could be devised from the Cleveland Way to incorporate this path, we think not, this path is for hard core or mad walkers only.

there is a path here,

The flatter bit, some of the 'A'
team and the sea beyond

Towards the end of the day we clear a whole woodland, to reveal a mass of rusting metal from a car and loads of empty bottles, sadly all tipped over the edge by people too lazy to dispose of their rubbish properly. Then the hardest bit, scrambling back up, even steeper than the descent, on hands and knees at times, still clearing and cutting as we go. It is blowing a gale at the top, we have been out of the wind all day.

A hugely challenging and rewarding day. We are promised that the next section of Beast Cliff could be in a future work programme, this I am really excited about, a cousin took me down there fifty years ago, how much will have changed!?

Three volunteering days so far this week, all with their own challenges, but all equally rewarding, all requiring professional back up and all, I believe, useful in their own ways. Today I have also burnt off some of the good, but because I'm greedy, too much food from Monday.