Hike purple heather fields in North York Moors NP, England, UK, Europe.
Hike through fields of purple heather flowers on the Cleveland Way Public Footpath, between Osmotherly and Great Broughton in North York Moors National Park, North Yorkshire county, England, United Kingdom, Europe. British taxpayers subsidize this privately-owned National Park, where the high, semi-natural moorland is managed by farmers and landowners for traditional sheep farming and grouse shooting. Burning the heather encourages new growth to provide food for sheep and the native red grouse (Lagopus lagopus scotica, a subspecies of willow ptarmigan). Controversial killing of foxes, stoats and crows (predator control) is done to increase grouse density. While only a rich elite can afford the regulated hunt for grouse, hunting infrastructure supports the local economy. Three types of heather grow on the North York Moors: 1) Ling (Calluna vulgaris), the most common type here, has very tiny pink flowers generally blooming in mid- to late-August; 2) Bell heather has dark pink or purple bell-shaped flowers; 3) Cross-leaved heath, found in boggy areas, blooms with pale pink bell-shaped flowers. England Coast to Coast hike day 10 of 14. [This image, commissioned by Wilderness Travel, is not available to any other agency providing group travel in the UK, but may otherwise be licensable from Tom Dempsey – please inquire at PhotoSeek.com.]Add to Cart Add to Lightbox Download