Our Holiday In The Motherland : Climbing Roseberry Topping

In my previous Holiday To The Motherland post I mentioned that when we first found out that we’d be going to England, I made a mental note in my head of all the places I wanted to take Sebastian to…Roseberry Topping was also on that list.


This iconic, strangely shaped hill (though as a child I always, with great pride, called it a mountain…) can almost be seen from my parent’s home. We used to drive past it every day for several years, and I would press my nose against the car window, achingly hungry for the view, desperately eager for the adventure of the climb.


When I did eventually climb it, it shook up my soul. I wanted to go higher, higher, higher. Little did I know then that explorer Captain James Cook used to climb Roseberry when he wasn’t working on his parent’s farm, and it was during these climbs that he came to the realization that exploration was to be his life’s work.



Roseberry has many different names, but the one my heart has always liked best is Odin’s Hill. Roseberry was sacred to the Norse settlers, and, in theory, where they worshiped the one eyed god. The Viking connection had always been of great significance to me, and to take my own Nord to the peak would be, I imagined, almost like closing a circle.


And it was. I was glowing as we hiked. Everything felt as it should as our breathing became more laboured, and we needed to look more carefully at where we were placing our feet. Despite having made many ascents to the peak, the view is always something which chokes me up.


From the top, we slowly turned clockwise to take everything in. From one view point we could see the vast industrial landscape of Teesside. From another just rolling moors for mile after mile. From another laid forests, fields and the blue swell of the North Sea. As we sat at the peak, squinting into the sun and eating hunks of stollen, I felt beautifully complete. Roseberry does that to you.






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