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" Northumberland - 6 - Dunstanburgh"


Date & start time:    Friday 4th May 2018. ( Map ref   NU 240 230 )

Location of Start :   Embleton Golf Club, Northumberland, UK.

Stayed at :                 Melvin Cottage, Low Newton by the Sea Northumberland, UK.

Places visited :        Embleton Bat, Greymare Rock, Dunstanburgh Castle and back.

Walk details :           4.2 miles, 400 ft of ascent overall, 3 hours.

With :                         Ann and our dogs, Harry and Dylan.

Weather :                  Sunshine blue skies all the way.

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As our week draws to a close we have one final objective to complete if we can.

It is four miles along the coast to Dunstanburgh Castle, but an eight mile walk once you've turned round and come back.

That's just too far for our older dog so a 'Plan B' is called for. . . and Dee and John came up with the answer.

A relaxed breakfast has been cleared away as we look across the bay, south towards the castle.

We've walked more or less halfway earlier in the week . . . so now we'll park at the golf club and walk the rest.

How's about that for a "link".

The public path skirts the main fairway and with the aid of a bridge or two we avoided the players.

Half way along the path swings toward the shore and the castle seems much closer.

The beautiful sunshine has brought out the flowers.

Primrose and possibly golden ragwort.
Good old fashioned daisies.


Delicate purple violets amongst the grass.
Let's hear it for the dandelions too.

Amongst the bushes and thorns a rock pippet stands proud.

Embleton Bay looking back at Low Newton in the distance.

Looking forward as we make our way along the top of the dunes.

Battlements . . . old (War of the Roses) and not so old (World War II gun emplacement).

Looking across the boulders at the end of the beach . . .
. . . and a view of the castle from down on the foreshore.

The boulders are sea-washed Whin Sill volcanic rock.

In between the seaweed . . . one of many colourful rock pools.

Greymare Rock is an amazing buckled rock formation of international renown.

A closer view of the compressed strata, looking a little like a horse's saddle . . . hence the name.

We leave the golf course at the gate beneath the headland.

It is a warm day and we stop to give the dogs (and ourselves) a rest.

Fulmars nesting on the cliffs opposite.
I climb up the grass slope for a more elevated look.

Dylan was wandering where I was heading . . . and whether it was worth following.

The Lilburn Tower dates from the 14th century.
Further along is the side turret of the main keep.

The main keep itself and southern perimeter wall . . . protected but not restored, by English Heritage.

It was a stronghold in the War of the Roses, but changed hands between the rival Lancastrian and Yorkist factions several times.

The fortress never recovered from the sieges of that time and was derelict by the 16th century.

[ There is a charge to enter unless you have English Heritage membership]

That view south included the harbour entrance and houses of Craster that we visited yesterday.

There's plenty of people using the shorter coastal walk from Craster to the castle today.

Ann is down near the cliff with the dogs . . .

. . . taking a picture of the swathes of scurvy grass that line the cliff edge.

A colourful swallow taking time out on the fence wire.

On the cliffs below the castle . . .
. . . more fulmars search out nest sites for the season.

The seaward perimeter doesn't seem so well protected . . .

but then a sea borne attack was less likely than an assault from the land.

The top of the keep seems rather precarious !
We head back, skirting the old moat along the way.

Photographer at work . . . complete with artisan hair cut !

Setting up for a final pot on the ninth hole.

To walk on the beach it was necessary to carry Harry over the  large boulders . . .

 . . . but once on the sand he was in his element again.

Dylan and Harry on holiday in Northumbria.

Who needs to go abroad with weather and beaches like this ?

A Mediterranean landscape . . . the colour recorded slightly differently on the iphone.

We've reached the eighteenth . . . time to adjourn to the clubhouse.

The golf club also offers food and drink to non-members.

In view of the warm weather we added a beer and a pot of tea to the late sandwich lunch.

What about me ?

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The walk to the castle has been completed again this holiday, albeit in two halves and a lot slower than previous years.

Harry has done really well to have walked the four + miles and Dylan covered a lot more as he explored along the way.

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On our last evening we returned to the Joiners in High Newton for another delightful meal.

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Just thought we'd show you the inside of the cottage / bungalow after we tidied up and started to pack.

The through lounge . . . in "Scandinavian" style apparently.

The dining area and kitchen with sea views beyond.
The bedroom on the road-side of the cottage.

Click here for more information on Melvin Cottage

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With renewed energy and a ball to encourage Harry along

we take one last beach walk on Saturday morning before leaving.

It has been a gloriously sunny week (apart from one day) but the east coast winds have kept the temperatures down.

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A few last pictures from Hartside Summit above Alston as we drive back into Cumbria.

The sad structure of the cafe at Hartside . . . damaged by a serious fire some months ago.

We understand from the ice cream man that there are plan to re-build.

Bikers pose by the sign after completing the road climb.
A posh way-marker for the long distance footpath ?

We look across to the Lake District fells . . . rather hidden in a heat haze.

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As the journey home was reasonably short we delayed lunch till we were in more familiar surroundings.

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If you have been following our journey . . . thanks for joining us.

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Post Script:

Harry ... 13th Jan 2004 - 1st June 2018 ... Rest in Peace.

This was Harry's last holiday away from home as three weeks later he succumbed to old age, infection and arthritis.

He died peacefully at home in the garden today.

A much loved, stalwart of a dog, twice round the 214 fells and more.

He never put a foot wrong and will be sorely missed.




Technical note: Pictures taken with either Ann's Panasonic Lumix Tz60 Compact, or my Panasonic Gx8 mid-range System Camera.

Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.

This site best viewed with . . . lunch at "home sweet home".

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5. Beadnell & Craster

Previous walk - 1st May 2018 - Beadnell & Craster

A previous time in the area - 21st September 2015 - Dunstanburgh from Craster

Next walk12th May - Rannerdale Knotts and the Bluebells