Fairly regularly someone asks the question “where is the most beautiful place in the world you have been?”. I consider myself to be fairly well traveled and have been to many beautiful places but I am lucky enough to be able to honestly say that I haven’t found anywhere better than the area where I live.
Being on the doorstep of the Yorkshire Dales and the Pennines provides endless opportunities to explore and photograph amazing landscapes and when winter comes it provides a stark contrast to the views you see in warmer months.
One of my family’s favourite local walks is from Haworth in West Yorkshire up to Top Withens. I have written previously about Top Withens (the inspiration for the location of Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights) in a post you can find here.
Every January we wait until a really cold but sunny day, drive to the small village of Stanbury and walk to the ruined farm of Top Withens. In previous years the path has been icy and treacherous but as you can see from these photos this year was different.
Down in the valley where we live we had an inch of snow – up on the moors as we climbed higher and higher the snow got deeper and deeper. Although it was harder work than normal the danger of slipping and breaking an ankle was less than in previous years.
The other advantage to the “bad” weather was that we came across very few people. Top Withens and the Haworth area in general are very popular both with locals and with tourists but on this day we hardly saw anyone – that is until a local fell-running club raced past.