BLUEBELL FINALE - 5.5.19

BLUEBELLS IN FLAKEBRIDGE WOOD

On a fabulous sunny Sunday, 12 Cumbria LDWA members Jim, Steve, Claire, Louise, Trish, Andy, Chris, Barbara, Alan, Helen, Dave and Pat plus Northumbria member Li Wang and guest Mark from Penrith headed east from Appleby County School on a quiet road running parallel to the A66 Appleby bypass. After passing under the bypass we walked towards Flakebridge Woods but at this stage we skirted the eastern edge before crossing several fields on our way to Harbour Flatt Farm. Staying off road we joined the road at Keisley bridge and continued to Keisley. After passing Keisley House it was a pleasant easy going grassy path along the bottom of a couple of local fells to Bow Hall where we stopped for coffee, behind the wall not in the hall.


At this point we joined the Pennine Way and the only real climb of the day. Onwards and upwards over Peeping Hill to High Cup Nick. After a photo stop at this spectacular steep sided valley of High Cup Gill we strode out over the Plain to Maizebeck Bridge. Once over the bridge it was a 2 km walk upstream to Great Rundale Tarn. The path criss crosses the stream but fortunately due to the recent reasonable weather there were no difficulties and all arrived at the tarn with dry feet. After lunch at the Tarn we continued to the shooting box. From here it was all downhill to Dufton. Throughout the descent we had extensive panoramic views of the Eden Valley and the Lakeland hills.


Dufton was soon reached. On leaving the village as we approached Dufton Ghyll we were overtaken by the leading runners in the Long Marton 10k road race. With 15 miles already walked none of the party were tempted to join the run and we continued quietly along the Pennine Journey Trail to our Bluebell Finale in Flakebridge Woods.
The bluebells didn’t disappoint. A vast blue expanse in dappled sunshine throughout the woods. From here it was a short walk back to Appleby. With everyone safely over the A66 bypass we were back at the car before 4.30.
We had walked 19 miles with over 3000 feet of ascent in glorious sunshine.
What better way to spend a Sunday.