When I go to flowery events I love to pick up lots of leaflets to see if there are any groups or classes I can sign up to (all of which are all recycled afterwards of course!). At the Harrogate Spring Flower Show I was handed a Flowers of the Dales Festival booklet, which was packed full of amazing wildflower and nature event listings for 2018.
This year is the 10th anniversary of the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust events, meaning there’s even more amazing things to get involved with than ever before. There’s lots of free activities and events, as well as paid for courses and days out.
The one that really caught my eye was the guided wildflower walk in Grassington this weekend. It was described as a three mile walk, with plenty of time to stop off and learn about the local wildflowers from the help of guides Chris and Heather. It sounded like a great day out!
Myself and my friend Katie signed up a couple of weeks back and it couldn’t have ben easier to get a place on the event – all of the information and booking system can be found on the website, so you can prepay online. This event was just £3 per person (amazing!).
Fast forward to this weekend and we were on our way to Grassington. We decided to grab lunch before to fuel up ahead of the walk, so stopped by a local pub for some fish finger sarnies and chips.
We headed down to the visitor centre to meet the guides and the rest of the group, and after a quick briefing we were on our way.
There was around 20 of us on the trail, and it was lovely to have a chat with everyone on the way round. It was a really interesting mix of people, all with different levels of knowledge on wildflowers, from locals right through to a couple who were visiting from North Carolina!
The walk was a gentle circular route from the centre of Grassington, through the woods and looping back via Linton Falls. Along the way we stopped off every few minutes to look at different wildflowers – the guides helped us with identification and gave us a whole host of helpful facts and information.
If the scenic views and flowers weren’t enough, there was the added extra of amazing smells! We found wild garlic, mint and a plant that smelled of mustard – a lovely surprise the avid cooks on the walk.
It was fantastic to learn about the local wildflowers, and I took away a lot from just a couple of hours with the guides. I was sure to pack my Collins wild flowers of Britain and Europe book so I could do a little bit of reading up as well.
I’d like to say a huge thank you to the Yorkshire Dales volunteers, Mary, Chris and Heather, who absolutely made our day!
I hope this post inspires a couple of you to get out there and learn more about our amazing county by signing up to one of the 10th anniversary events. Take a friend or go solo – the volunteers/guides are so lovely and it’s a really great day out.
Mary, Chris and Heather.