Full Steam Ahead – Yorkshire Dales, UK

Written on Saturday, January 16, 2021 by

Touchdown, Leeds Bradford Airport, yes LBA International Yorkshire. Gods own Country. What a joy it is arriving into a UK airport other than Heathrow. It’s a breeze.

We were out of the airport to nearby Knaresborough within half an hour, staying overnight at this pleasant historical town complete with weekly market, ancient pubs and a towering viaduct over the River Nidd. We spent several days exploring the Yorkshire Dales, marveling at the beautiful rolling green hills rising to the lonely mountains following the stone wall lined roads, travelling through not so quaint, but solid functional small remote villages huddled in the Dales for protection against the elements.

Then off to the township of Whitby on the coast, with its towering ruins of the eerie Gothic Abbey which was the inspiration for Bram Stokers Dracula, the fishing boats and squawking gulls and tales of smuggling.

The highlight was the Tornado Steam Train from Sheffield, in industrial Southern Yorkshire, to Carlisle in Cumbria, near the Scottish border. Travelling on the famous Settle to Carlisle line, one of England’s most scenic tracks, was an absolute delight. Saved from closure by hardworking volunteers in the 1980’s, the locomotive was completed in 2008, being the first of its kind to be built since the 1960’s – the end of the great steam era. We departed the crowded station full of excited travelers, and began our journey, soon to be rewarded by the beautiful countryside of the Yorkshire Dales, rising to the crossing of the majestic Ribblehead Viaduct. We reclined in style and enjoyed the cuisine served to our table, accompanied with wine and stunning vistas. A great day spent with fellow Anoraks; lovers of trains and all things rail.

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