Sunday, 3 November 2013

Mount Grace Priory and Cod Beck Reservoir

OK, so I'm beginning to develop a bit of theme here.  First a ruin, then a walk......   It's not deliberate, honest.  Thing is, that's the way it panned out again.  

As usual, we were chasing the sun, and it was due to stay out and play in the East.  We didn't want to have to drive far, and I worked out this little route which we could easily do in the afternoon. We haven't been to the Priory before, and since it also provided car parking, it was the natural starting point. 

We parked the car and went and had a look around the priory before setting off on the walk.  As you can see, it was another beautiful day. 

Mount Grace House or The Guesthouse which is very nice inside.  I want one!  (I would modernise mine of course).
A recent sculpture of  The Madonna holding Jesus.  I like it. 

What we found really interesting about Mount Grace Priory were the "cells".  The word makes you think of small prison type rooms, but that wasn't the case here at all.  The cells were actually lovely little cottages for one, with a little garden for growing food and herbs, an outside privy, a bedroom, a room for study and worship, and a workshop upstairs.  It didn't look like a bad place to live at all.  The monks lived as hermits and were strictly vegetarian it seems.   All very interesting: English Heritage - Mount Grace Priory,  Britain Express - Mount Grace Priory

After half an hour or so in the Priory, we started our walk just after midday.
Uphill through the woods to join the Cleveland Way at Chapel Wood Farm
The Cleveland Way, just East of Osmotherly.  It's a bit tight mind, single file only. 
I just love the red of the hawthorn berries. 
Peter took this picture and I stole it off him, I love the colour of the bracken. 
This was an unexpected delight.  We didn't know Cod Beck Reservoir was going to look as good as this. 
We sat and ate lunch here, enjoying the bonus of a table and bench in the sun.  Surprisingly it was bitter cold, and sitting still as we were, it didn't take long for us to need hats and gloves.
Our lunch time view.
After lunch we crossed the road for the Reservoir and found the fingerpost for the ROW which would take us through fields and disused quarries back towards the Cleveland Way.  This is not a well used path!  We did end up a little bit all over the place trying to find our way through.   It was worth it to see this tree though:

And to see these colours and sights as we finally found our way out of the quarries. ( I nicked some more of Peter's photo's)

Another brilliant afternoons walk.  It's quite an easy route, with a couple of hills.  6 1/2 miles, 1200ft of up and 3 1/2 hours of truly wonderful sunshine.  No wonder I always have a smile on my face.


  1. Looks like a perfect day to me. Lovely bit of history and some lovely countryside - win win!

  2. Enjoyed that. I visited Mount Grace Priory a few years ago, just to pass a Saturday afternoon, and it was very interesting. It's also a great place to sit down, close your eyes, an snooze for half an hour. very peaceful.
    Cheers, Alen