Sunday 27 February 2011

Thorpe Fell Top

Another day, another Marilyn! Todays target was Thorpe Fell Top, on Barden Moor. Parking wasn't the easiest, but a spot was found in Cracoe and I set off through the back lanes of the village to reach the open hill via Fell lane. Beyond the field walls all is access land and an old path zig-zaged up to reach the gritstone crags on the skyline. From Bottle Crag the summit wasn't in view, just a gentle swelling of the heather moor indicated the direction. After almost a kilometre of thrashing through the knee deep pathless terrain I arrived at the trig. The wind was coming straight from the arctic by the feel of it, so I turned roughly south-west and with the wind on my back aimed for the Cracoe war memorial, right on the edge of the crags overlooking Cracoe.
Very moving to stand here and think of the 13 men who lost there lives in the Great war from such a small community.
I continued along the edge to Rylstone Cross, I don't know anything about this other than it was rebuilt in 1995. My father visited the cross in the 1930's with his father, and in those days it was made of wood. The internet isn't much help either, I'd welcome any info on this unusual monument.
A short way to the south I picked up the bridleway which eventually led down to Rylstone church, then the walled Chapel Lane brought me back to the car. Further up Wharfedale I could see showers being driven across the Buckden Pike and Great Whernside, but fortunately it stayed dry with me.

Thursday 24 February 2011

Air Ambulance

After the walk (see previous post) I'd only travelled half a mile at the most, I saw what I thought was a scooter on its side beside the road. As I passed i realised a motorcyclist had had an accident and was lying on the grass. He was speaking to the ambulance service, but they were having difficulty locating him on what is a very minor road. He didn't seem to be showing the pain he must have been in, his leg was at a very strange angle, broken just below the knee. I was able to give the dispatcher a grid reference, and within 10min the air ambulance was with us.
The paramedics were very efficient, the only trouble they had was finding a vein. Once the gas and painkillers had taken effect I helped them lift him into the helicopter, and having given my details to the policeman, I drove home.

White Hill

The weather forecast seemed to have it all wrong, I decided a dull day deserved a dull hill. (I actually don't believe in dull hills!) Anyway, a drive to the northern edge of the Bowland Fells, plenty of height gained as I parked at "Cross of Greet". I was "greeted" by a strong wind and dense low cloud! No matter White Hill was my goal, a "Marilyn", the map showed that the fence would lead me to the trig point, and indeed it did. There and back the same way, the ground was very wet. Only about an hour and a half there and back, a quick buttie back at the car and the thought was to go out for a ride on the push bike, however the day was about to spring a surprise!!

Sunday 20 February 2011

Derwentwater Shore

Just a short walk today, determined by finding a parking place! I had forgotten it was half term, the Lakes were heaving with people. We parked the car under Falcon Crag and walked back into Keswick beside the shore of Derwentwater, the sun shone for a brief moment, but generally it was overcast. the wind was incredibly cold. The closer we got to Keswick the busier the path became, clearly a very popular walk.
You can't go to Keswick without a good gear browse, the only thing which really took my eye was a smock, made from Epic fabric. This material was tried by Golite a few years ago. The manufacturer was "EDZ". This company is local to the Lake District, the factory is on the Cumbrian coast at Maryport, good to hear of outdoor gear actually being made in the UK rather than just designed here and produced in the far east. I shall give a bit of thought before I purchase.
A hot chocolate in Booths with splendid people watching, before we returned much the same way, the path much quieter in the last light of the day.
The photo is of the split rock in the lake under Walla Crag, perhaps all Lake District rocks are like this I don't think so either!!

Wednesday 16 February 2011

Bike to Windermere

A beautiful day, the sun shone all the daylight hours. It was great to be out on the minor roads of the south lakes, in the Winster valley the birds were tweeting, perhaps they know something we don't? The climb over Cartmel fell to the shores of Windermere was a real killer, food was needed and fast so Greggs was visited, and the goodies consumed on a bench in the sun. I returned home via the Lyth valley and the coastal marshes to Sandside. Just over 50 miles although it didn't seem it.

Sunday 13 February 2011

A Ride Round The South Lakes Lanes

Once again I woke to a very wet Sunday morning. There are always jobs to do, and there better done on wet days. By 2 o'clock it was almost dry, so I got out on the bike for a ride round the lanes between home and Kendal. My route took me to Crooklands, Gatebeck, LowPark, Stainton, Hincaster, across the mosses to Sandside, Arnside, Silverdale, Yealand and back home. Almost all of the route was on single track roads with very little traffic, good job the potholes are bad enough after the frost and rain.
There has been an excellent new footbridge (see photo) built on a very little used path, across St. Sundays Beck near Stainton. Quite a surprise because the local press has been full of the cuts and lack of money, even for the marking of footpaths/bridleways.

Thursday 10 February 2011

Bike to Cartmel

As I already had the bike in the back of the car, so a short drive saw me parked up just before lunch at Sampool Bridge at the foot of the Lyth valley. There is a signposted cycle route to Grange-over-Sands, this avoids the busy A590, I only saw 1 car! As it had been a late start I felt it was time for lunch so a suitable seat was found on the promenade in the sun, it felt like spring had arrived. I'm under no illusions though, we're a good month away yet.
I rode up through Grange and on to Allithwaite, turning off to Cartmel, which always seems busy. Minor lanes led over to cross the new High Newton bypass with its amazing view of the Coniston Fells. The day was warming up, the climb up Cartmel fell seemed to go on and on, before the road plummeted down to Hodge Howe and the lanes through Witherslack which would lead me back to the car.

Sunday 6 February 2011

Wild Ride to Arnside

After almost 24 hours of rain, I managed to get out for a ride on the old Ribble pushbike. Its my winter hack, a good job, the lanes had many floods and were strewn with debris from the trees due to the high wind. My route led south into the wind through Burton-in-Kendal, across to Yealand and into Silverdale. The wind off the sea was terrific, it made it difficult to hold a straight course, luckily the roads were quiet. As I climbed over the shoulder of Arnside Knott the wind was behind me, it was like the climb didn't exist.
Down the hill to the promenade in Arnside and out onto the Pier to take a quick photo (a bit blurred due to the wind I'm afraid). I didn't linger, north with the wind behind me I flew along to Sandside, and turned off over the minor road to Beetham. The River Bela had burst its banks, the final few lanes were a bit sheltered, just as well as the rain was coming down again. A good dose of fresh air, any cobwebs well and truly blown away.