These hills of the north-eastern pennines are perfect in these times of plague. Although we saw two moving covered all terrain vehicles at the start, and two walkers on an intruding cross-wilderness path in the distance, no-one else on the moorland hills of Bellbeaver Rigg (actually in Cumbria) and Viewing Hill. This five and a half mile walk with 600+ft of ascent may look a pussy and possibly lacking interest, but this is untrue on both counts. Do it as per the chapter in the Nuttall’s book, starting just down from the 591 spot height on the B road from Alston to Middleton in Teesdale, on the through track to Cow Green reservoir. The friendly, snow speckled triumvirate of Great Dun Fell with its giant balloon, Little Dun Fell and Cross Fell are there ahead to cheer you on, and always visible, needed as the going is a bit rough in places. The lonely Tees is also a wonderful sight, especially from the ascent/descent of Viewing Hill looking north of west. Started at 2degC today, but warmed gradually by the lazy sun, so voles, the odd grouse and Plovers were seen, and the first skylark of the season heard. The moors are heavily managed for grouse, and patches of heather cut rather than burned, but this was a refreshing and surprisingly pleasant walk.
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