My little house in the hill

I have lived in my little crofthouse, that sits at the base of the imposing Stourbrough Hill, for 14 years now.  I have looked at this hill through all weathers from my back door.  The hill is 173m / 568ft high and this is where all the water from my burn originates.


Ten years ago, we rode the horses up to the top and over.  It took us four hours to find our way home!  Never again.  Incredible views, though.


I remember getting off and walking to try and find our way through the million peat bogs and hags.


Both images © Copyright Douglas Law who climbed to the top with a camera – kudos to that man!

The horses climbed up them on their knees. It was incredible to watch and you could see their ancient survival instincts coming to the fore.


I am trying to take things easy again as I think I was over-doing it since having my plaster off and my ankle is telling, no shouting at me, now.  I am not sure what I am supposed to be doing as physio.  Walk?  Not walk?  Rest?  Keep going?  What?  The ankle is not stable and I have had a couple of twinges when I took a bad step.  I suppose I was hoping for instant miracles.  I could do with some guidance.


So back to pottering on the flat track only with the dogs, admiring the view at the end, watching horses and ponies from afar, while trying to gauge what is a good idea and what is not.

The black blobs in the distance are Shetland ponies.



I only discovered that I was actually photographing a sheep as well when I got home (at least I think that is a sheep – probably my neighbour’s prize Shetland pony foal and I can’t tell the difference as it has been so long since I have seen one!)


Icelandic horses are easier. As they are bigger!


4 thoughts on “My little house in the hill

  1. Karen

    You have a stunning location Frances. If we ever manage to move up to Shetland I am hoping we will be able to buy a croft house as I am not a fan of modern houses however well built they are. I would love to be able to take on a derelict croft house and rebreathe some life and love into it. Ah well dreams at the moment but who knows what lady luck will bring our way? Just waiting for the last 2 children to finish Uni and fly the nest… I hope you find the middle road with your ankle that gives you enough freedom without doing too much to incur pain. Your photography is a wonderful tonic for us and I hope you get as much pleasure from it as it gives us.

  2. Linda

    Hear hear – what Karen said. I used to do a lot of personal training – the protocols may have changed since I stopped practicing, but I think some things are perennial – try to condition the ankle with some simple training like you would do with the horses – stay on level ground for most of this for a while – walking is good. Try for consistent exercise 3-5 x per week. Point and flex the feet individually (balancing on one, work the other). Balancing on one leg in general is very good for the ankle. If your Dr. is ready for you to do calf raises (lift up on tip-toes, lower SLOWLY) that is also great for ankle strength and stabilization. Try hard not to roll to the outside of your foot when you do all of these – think BIG toe (inner toe) down. xoxo!

  3. Sam

    As someone with ankle tendonitius, one has to be careful where you walk. Flat, EVEN ground. Stay off the hills until your ankle is stronger. And ask about conditioning the muscles around the ankle.

    Ditto on LOVING the pictures.

    1. Joanie

      Another ditto for loving your pictures. I look for them every morning to brighten my day. I don’t have any advice for your ankle (sadly) but I wanted to share that I just received my t-shirts and tea towels with Fivla and and Vitamin in their sweaters! I can’t tell you how happy I am to have just this tiny bit of Shetland here in California. Thank you for sharing your beautiful country with us!


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