Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Flower of the mountains

Tuesday 13th april 2010.
  I've been on another of my favourite walks this is the one I always walk around the first week of April every year, it's the walk to view and photograph the Purple Saxifrage (Saxifraga Oppositifolia) it's at its best around the first 2 weeks in April. Its growning Range is widespread but this plant is rare, it ranges from northern Greenland down into Europe and the British Isles where it is only found on the mountains on mainly lime and mineral rich rocks it really is an arctic alphine plant and it's been growing here since the last IceAge.The best location to see it is on the 1900 ft contour on Pen-y-ghent The late Alfred Wainwright the author of many walking books compaired the Purple Saxifrage to Aubretia draping on the cliffs and he wasn't exaggerating, but remember this is a protected plant so leave it to grow in its own special environment where it is managing to survive.
   Our walk of about 9 miles started in Horton in Ribblesdale up to and over Pen-y- ghent and then back skirting the rocks on the 1900 ft contour to carry out a full survey of this special flower. Also seen and heard on the walk were the Skylark, Lapwing, Curlew, Wheatear and the Golden Plover.

                                                                         The walk in
 The first sighting of the Purple Saxifrage on the 1900ft contour

                              The lower band of rocks is on the1900ft contour
                                       A very distant shot of the  Wheatear
                Across the summit above the S.E. side of Pen-y-ghent

You can just about see the Golden Plover
Springs emerging from below the cliffs on the S.E. face

S.E face of Pen-y-ghent our local Pendle Hill is in the distance  


  1. Wonderful flowers David - thanks for the post - hope I'll get to see them myself of of these days

  2. What an exhilerating walk David! The flowers are gorgeous and it must have been lovely to see them growing in their natural surroundings. Great photos.... I feel like I can reach out and touch those tiny flowers.

  3. Wow! Now that is certainly an amazing place to go for hikes. I love the rocks, and you have so many flowers there that I don't know. It's great! I came over from Duxbury Ramblers.