South Tyne is so much associated with lead-mines, and the face of the country through which the river flows is so much influenced by them....and however much the landscape may occasionally suffer from their presence, there is a great deal of interest attached to the mines and miners themselves.
The Tyne And Its Tributaries. W J Palmer. 1882
Lead mining has left its scars but 100 years of inactivity has allowed most traces of the industry to disappear or lie hidden on the moors where the miners bored into the sides of the hills. Nenthead and Alston were the main centres. At a bend in the South Tyne is an old sheep shelter in ruins with a more modern shed nearby. Here a tiny bridge allows the private road to cross the river and it continues as a surfaced road up the valley. An old smelt mill was also located here. The road runs higher than the river for some distance with some rocky ledges and twists and turns as it flows noisily over the rock strewn river bed. Climbing more steeply now, with the river to the right just a small stream a few yards across, the road is surrounded by moors and assumes an increasingly desolate aspect with the river winding through marshland beyond the bridge on its way down from its source.