Now! Then! A Yorkshire Almanac for 2024

11 July 1844: The botanist James Backhouse Jnr. and colleagues walk from Settle over Malham Cove, Gordale Scar and Arncliffe Clowder to Arncliffe

James Backhouse Jnr. 1844. Notes of a Botanical Ramble in Yorkshire, etc., in the Summer of 1844. The Phytologist, Vol. 40. Ed. George Luxford. London: Edward Newman. Get it:

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Excerpt

Our party again set out from Settle and crossed the hills toward Malham. On these we saw Thlaspi alpestre [Noccaea caerulescens, alpine penny-cress] in abundance, especially on the rubbish at the mouth of the lead mines. We gathered fine specimens of Polemonium cæruleum [Jacob’s ladder] in the fissures of some limestone rocks, near Malham Cove, where a valley is suddenly closed in by a huge cliff, from under which a small stream emerges. Here we noticed Draba incana [hoary whitlow grass], Geranium sanguineum [bloody crane’s-bill], Pyrus aria [Aria edulis, whitebeam], and the remains of Draba muralis [wall whitlow grass], which, as well as Hutchinsia petræa [Hornungia petraea], was now dried up. Leaving this place, we crossed a ridge of hills to Gordale Scar, a deep cavernous ravine in the limestone, where the overhanging cliffs present a striking and fearful aspect. At the further end of this opening we ascended the tumbled rocks of a waterfall, which pours from under a natural arch into the chasm beneath. Near this place we saw Hieracium lawsonii [Lawson’s hawkweed], Hippocrepis comosa [horseshoe vetch], Epipactis ovalis [broad-leaved helleborine], Equisetum variegatum [variegated horsetail], Potentilla alpestris [Potentilla crantzii, alpine cinquefoil], Ribes petræum [rock redcurrant], and a remarkable form of Rhinanthus crista-galli [Rhinanthus minor, yellow rattle], which however passed into the common one. In a boggy piece of ground near Malham Tarn, we gathered Bartsia alpina, and on the adjacent crag, Polypodium calcareum, Ceterach officinarum [rustyback], and a few specimens of Hieracium hypochœroides [cat’s-ear hawkweed]. A high wind ruffled the waters of the tarn, and brought considerable quantities of Potamogeton lucens [shining pondweed], perfoliatus [perfoliate pondweed] and prælongus [long-stalked pondweed] to the shore. On Arncliffe Clowder we found abundance of Dryas octopetala [mountain avens] but owing to the lateness of the season, it was chiefly out of flower. This plant is strikingly different from that found in Teesdale and may prove a distinct species. We passed the night at a comfortable little inn at Arncliffe.


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In the same volume I also enjoyed the ascent with his father of Mickle Fell, then in Yorkshire, now in Durham.

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Original

On the 11th of 7th Month our party again set out from Settle, and crossed the hills toward Malham. On these we saw Thlaspi alpestre in abundance, especially on the rubbish at the mouth of the lead-mines. We gathered fine specimens of Polemonium cæruleum in the fissures of some limestone rocks, near Malham-cove, where a valley is suddenly closed in by a huge cliff, from under which a small stream emerges. Here we noticed Draba incana, Geranium sanguineum, Pyrus Aria, and the remains of Draba muralis, which, as well as Hutchinsia petræa, was now dried up. Leaving this place, we crossed a ridge of hills to Gordale-scar, a deep cavernous ravine in the limestone, where the overhanging cliffs present a striking and fearful aspect. At the further end of this opening we ascended the tumbled rocks of a waterfall, which pours from under a natural arch into the chasm beneath. Near this place we saw Hieracium Lawsoni, Hippocrepis comosa, Epipactis ovalis, Equisetum variegatum, Potentilla alpestris, Ribes petræum, and a remarkable form of Rhinanthus Crista-galli, which however passed into the common one. In a boggy piece of ground near Malham Tarn, we gathered Bartsia alpina, and on the adjacent crag, Polypodium calcareum, Ceterach officinarum, and a few specimens of Hieracium hypochœroides. A high wind ruffled the waters of the tarn, and brought considerable quantities of Potamogeton lucens, perfoliatus and prælongus to the shore.

On Arncliffe Clowder we found abundance of Dryas octopetala ? but owing to the lateness of the season, it was chiefly out of flower. This plant is strikingly different from that found in Teesdale, and may possibly prove a distinct species. We passed the night at a comfortable little inn at Arncliffe

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