|Pry House Farm has become a white wonderland; clean, bright and blue-white under the clearest winter sky broken only by tracks made by man and machine.|
Saturday 20 January 2018
For the second night running we have had a fresh fall of snow topping up the fields
and the walls and coating the trees with icy particles.
At the same time the wind got up, blowing the snow into drifts against the stone walls.
This afternoon was completely different - not a breath of wind.
All was calm, all was still.
Voices and strange noises floated from miles away.
An unusual experience.
What will tomorrow bring?
What will tomorrow bring?
Thursday 18 January 2018
The landscape that we are so familar with changes completely
when it is covered in a thick blanket of snow.
The fields and pastures are smoothed flat by the windblown snow
ruffled only by the sheep trod that snakes its way close to the wall.
Dry stone walls are iced with a layer of frozen snow.
Harkers was once a farm in its own right. Many years ago Chris' father bought the land and the buildings either side of the cottage so they are all part of Hoggarths / Pry House farming enterprise now. The cottage is now a second home. There is a move at the moment by the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority to penalise second home owners by charging them five times the standard council tax rate in an effort to make such dwellings available for families / young people to live in permenantly. I can't imagine anyone wanting to live here 24:7 but I could be wrong!
All that is left of an old Nisson Hut styled into garage.
People who lived in these parts were not just hardy and tough but resourceful too.
Another wild and wintery night and this morning we are greeted with more snow.
The frozen snow clings to the sheep's fleece, their ears and their horns
They are pleased to see Chris and the feed he brings for them.
Whilst this weather continues extra fodder will be taken to them twice a day.
Wednesday 17 January 2018
We woke up this morning to a good covering of snow but with
the sun up and under a blue sky it was a magical morning.
The sound of the quad bike heralds breakfast and the sheep
are quick to come and meet us.
The old cowus' and hogg houses are perfect for feeding stock;
out of the weather, dry and sheltered.
In an instant the weather changed and we were in caught in a bad shower.
It was good to be going home.
Saturday 13 January 2018
After hours of tending, clearing and cutting back
and barrowfuls of leaves and dead stuff .......
the garden at Hillcrest is poised ready
for hundreds of spring bulbs to burst forth.
And here is the first, tiny signs that they are on their way.
Tuesday 2 January 2018
Pry House Farm is the place to be for bird watching at any time of year.
Even in winter there's often something interesting or unusual to see,
like a black grouse on home field this morning.
There aren't many black grouse about however we know of two lekking sites on the moor
where they return to each year. Lekkng is when the male birds display their white tail feather in a fan shape. They call and strut about to show dominance and to attract females. Its a strange but fascinating spectacle. The black grouse is only one of 3 breeds of British birds that exhibit lekking behaviour.