About a year ago I took the family out for a short walk in the countryside, with strict instructions to leave my hammer behind at home. Parking near the village church we walked past the village green and took the road north towards Sancton. At the 'T' junction (N.G.R. SE 910368) we turned right and followed that road past some new houses and then took a track leading north (913370), leading eventually to a farm. We started to walk up the hill to cries of "I'm tired can we go back ?".
But about half way up this track whilst explaining that we did not have far to go ( "only a few more miles now" ) I noticed a fossil lying on top of the soil and then another - things might not be so bad! There was my old friend Neohibolites minimus and the soil there looked somewhat redder in colour than the rest of the field. "Geology !",I thought , "Neohibolites plus red soil equals Red Chalk !". We carried on up the hill and at the top crossed into the next field instead of following the path on to the farm to the right.
We stopped here to get our breath back and admire the view of the Chalk escarpment of the Wolds and the Humber to the South. Then we set off again along the path beside the field, towards Syke House Farm. There were pieces of Chalk in the soil here and finger flints were common. Then I noticed a spiral shaped piece of Chalk ; a piece of a Turrulites the spiral ammonite. As we slowly wandered down the slop towards the farm I found a small Inoceramus in a reddish coloured Chalk matrix. "Could this be the Red Chalk again ?" I wondered.
Just before we reached the farm we took the track leading to the east (908384) up the valley. We were slowing up again , but we had got half way on our circular walk .... "Only a few more miles now". So I had a look around in these freshly ploughed fields (922389) to see if there were any more fossils to be found. My search was rewarded as I found a broken bit of shell ( which could have been anything ), another Inoceramus ( this one had coarser ribs ) and two specimens of Holaster. We continued along the path towards Hessleskew Gare Farm, and then took the track leading south past a Trig. Point until we met the road back into North Newbald. Beside this road I noticed the land seemed rather waterlogged and then saw a stream running alongside the road. Obviously there was a spring there, where the Chalk overlies the Upper Jurassic Clays. We strolled through the village back to the car and a thermos of coffee , stopping to look at walls of locally quarried Oolite. "Nearly there now !" A pleasant walk ; and a pocket full of fossils to show for a day out without my trusty hammer.
[Based on walk No. 6 in Leaflet No. 6 on "Public Rights of Way" available from Humberside County Council's Director of Technical Services, Eastgate, Beverley.]
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