Lot's to walk in June

An awkward stile Crossing the Void! Descending to the canal Following the path Gathering at Moses Gate Country Park If that spider moves - run! Sweetie time! Weir on the River Croal
Tuesday June 14th.

5 mile evening stroll from Moses Gate.

22 walkers and 2 dogs. Leaders Rich and Deb.

A fine evening saw a good crowd for the first walk led by Rich and Deb. Deb had put a lot of work into looking up the heritage of the area we were visiting and she handed out a flyer with loads of information on. It was very useful to refer to as we made our way round.

Leaving the car park we made our way to the back of Rock Hall visitor centre and followed a path that wandered through green woods and eventually alongside the railway. There was an adventure where a bridge had collapsed but thanks to a kind gentleman everyone made it safely across the gap.

We emerged in Stoneclough and turned left over the river to reach Prestolee. Whilst admiring Holy Trinity Church (undergoing renovation) which has been used in Coronation Street, there was time for sweets to be handed out.

Climbing up from here we reached a disused arm of the canal where Maude decided that the green algae must be grass and launched herself into the canal! She was hauled safely out but was absolutely filthy and stank to high heaven. We followed the canal to the outskirts of Ringley and then turned up through a wood to cross an awkward stile. This led into a field of ponies and horses including an adorable shetland pony.

Turning left we followed a rough road to a farm which had an enormous spider and web on the side of a barn. If that spider ever moves - run! Walking through the farm we could see Kearsley Mill in the valley.

Dropping down to another arm of canal Otis decided it was his turn to get wet and he too had to be hauled out! We're thinking of renaming them dumb and dumber. Little Anne gave him a rub down and he soon cheered up.

We crossed the base of Prestolee locks and then made our way back along the line of the river to the car park. A lovely evening stroll. Well done to Rich and Deb.


Saturday June 18th.

A Bit of This and a Bit of That.

26 miles. 4 walkers. Leader: Alf Short.

'' Only four intrepid souls* (is this a record low for a group walk) braved the deadful, but inaccurate, weather forecast and were rewarded with a terrific day of generally good walking conditions. Not perfect, but far better than we could possibly have hoped for.

(* Neil Smith, John Howarth, Alf Short and new boy Geoff Capps who has just joined the LDWA and East Lancs.)

The walk, replacing the cancelled Welsh 3000s, combined parts of the Kentmere Horseshoe and the High Street Stroll, with a couple of other bits and pieces into a strenuous 26ml meander with about 7000ft of ascent.

Anticipating the worst we set off, fully waterproofed, from the parking area at Church Bridge, Nr Troutbeck to take in the first climb of the day up the Garburn Pass and into the mist. The surface of the first half of the climb has been much improved (possibly because the pass is being re-opened to four wheeled drive vehicles). From the top of the pass we diverted onto the Kentmere Horseshoe to take in (still in the mist) Yoke, Ill Bell, and Froswick. Swinging round the head of the valley took us to Mardale Ill Bell and down to the wind shelter, and first stop for eats, at Nan Bield. We came out of the mist at this point and enjoyed pretty good views for the rest of the day, which gradually improved leading to the progressive shedding of outer layers.

The rocky scramble up Harter Fell and descent to the Gatesgarth Pass, was followed by the straightforward, if occasionally boggy, climbs of Branstree and Selside Pike. From there to the relatively little visited Mosedale and lunch at Swindale Head. (As it happens, this was probably the busiest day of the year for walkers in Mosedale, which is visited on the first leg of the Three Rings of Shap challenge walk, but we didn't see any of them; they passed through long before we arrived).

Then onto the Old Corpse Road (along which corpses were carried from Mardale - before the deluge - for burial in consecrated ground at Shap) and on to Hawswater and Mardale Head. (No ice cream van; has this pitch been abandoned?). From here the normal Stroll route goes over Kidsty Pike, but we took the alternative, and in the writer's view much more interesting and varied Riggindale Crag, on to High Street and then to the Beacon at Thornthwaite Crag. A bit chilly by now as the day's end was approaching, so on with some clothing for the gentle descent into the Troutbeck Valley, and final equally gentle climb over The Tongue, before a short walk to the finish.

A great day out!''

Alf Short
Climbing up.... Geoff, Neil and John with trig Haweswater view Looking back..... Neil, Alf and John in the mist Trio at the Top