SEDGWICK, LEVENS PARK, LEVENS & SIZERGH

 


Summary

Date - 10th May 2016 Distance - 8.25 miles
Ascent -
1100ft
Map - OL7 Start point - Layby on old section of A6 at Sizergh (SD 5015 8698)

 

Summits Achieved

No summits were reached on this walk

 

Preface

It was Monday, and as usual Dad and Uncle Brian had gone to Elaine's Tearoom at Feizor.

Not to be outdone and thanks to Shaun, Grizzly and Little Eric, tea and cakes had arrived.

"Great", cheered Allen and Southey. "We'll go get the plates and mugs.

Meanwhile Tetley had asked, "what's the cakes today?

"It is a scone day", replied Grizzly. "Little Eric had made fruit, and I have done cherry and ginger.

"There is butter and raspberry jam too", added Little Eric.

With Tetley's help Shaun soon had the mugs filled, and we were all tucking in.

"The scones are delicious", said Shaun, with look of ecstasy on his face.

"Quite", agreed Allen, helping himself to another.

Southey then said, "I was looking at the diary and see that there are a choice of two days for a walk with Uncle Eric. Tomorrow and Wednesday."

Little Eric had picked up the iPad and in a few taps had the Met Office forecast on the screen. "Tomorrow is the best day."

"I wonder where we might be going?", mused Grizzly. "We have not had the time to come up with any ideas."

"Well I suggest we wait and see", replied Tetley. "Dad will be speaking to Uncle Eric tonight. He will no doubt have something in mind."

The rest of the afternoon was spent quietly. The Allen and Southey's Lake District magazine and Tetley's Dalesman magazine had arrived. So Shaun, sat with Tetley, Little Eric with Allen and Grizzly with Southey as we all enjoyed reading the articles.


Later in the evening Dad came to see us.

"A walk is on for tomorrow Lads. We are going to the Sedgwick, Levens and Sizergh area. I know that we will have walked a lot before, there will be some new ground on the section from Levens to Sizergh Castle."

"It does not matter that we have been before as the countryside is so lovely", replied Grizzly.

"For me it will be mostly new, so I look forward to tomorrow very much", said Southey.

"Just good to be out", cheered Little Eric. "Can't wait."

 

The Walk

Tuesday dawned and it was to be a warm day with some sun and quite breezy.

Not wanting to delay Dad, We all lent a paw to get the picnic made and safely stowed in Allen's rucksack.

Dad got his gear ready and hearing him slam the boot of the car for the last time, we hurried out to settle on the front seat, with our pals Barnaby and Lee, who had come along to see Uncle Eric.

As Dad pulled out of the drive, Southey asked, "where are we meeting Uncle Eric?"

"At the large layby on the old section of the A6 at Sizergh", replied Dad.

To get there we drove from Carnforth up the A6 to Levens Bridge to then climb right onto the A590 heading towards Kendal. Just before the roundabout, Dad took the road off left, to in a few yards arrive at the start.

"Good morning, Uncle Eric", we called out.

"Hi lads", he said in reply. "How are you today."

"We're fine", replied Tetley.

As he and Dad got ready, Southey asked, "so where do we go."

"On along the road", said Shaun.

So settled in Dad's rucksack and this shouldered off we went, Dad and Uncle Eric striding out.

Very soon the road passed the Strickland Arms, that can be recommended for good food and ales.

In yards we were faced with the entrance gate to Sizergh Castle.

"Since the 13th century this had been the home of the Strickland family, although since 1950 the castle and grounds have been in the care of the National Trust", said Grizzly.

"Hence the origin of the name of the inn", went on Allen.

We ignored the castle entrance, instead going right along the narrow Nannypie Lane, beside which forget-me-nots bloomed amongst the nettles and other vegetation.

The lane was followed to a junction beside which flowed the River Kent. "We go left?, called out Shaun.

"I remember this", said Allen. "It leads into the caravan site, that is situated where long ago there used to be a gunpowder factory."

"Ah yes", agreed Tetley. "We cannot walk through the site, so have to cross to the far side of the river, via the suspension bridge."

This bounced a bit as we crossed, Dad then pausing to take this picture. "Ooh that was nice", said Southey.

"OK", said Shaun, "we continue upstream."

Little Eric commented, "how fresh and green the countryside is at this time of year." Then pointing, "that is a beautiful and shapely tree. Worth a picture for the story Dad?"

Delightful along here by the river, the grassy path took us to a gate and then led on to swing sharp right.

Uncle Eric said, "we shortly go through wall on left via a gate and then cross the pasture and climb to Larkrigg Hall Bridge."

This spans the drained section of the Lancaster Canal, which we now followed south along the former towpath.

Soon this led through Larkrigg Spring Wood. "Look at the mass of bluebells", called out Allen. "They must be worth a closer look."

A path led down and up across the empty canal and on through the wood.

"Wow", cried Southey, "I have seen anything like this before. They are a magnificent sight.

Returning to the towpath we exited the wood into pasture. Here there is no trace of the canal other than Horse Park Bridge that stands marooned in the middle of the huge pasture.

At the far side after a small gate the towpath resumed, with the canal having been made into gardens of houses. Now in Sedgwick, we crossed the aqueduct constructed 1817-19 and walked on south.

Amongst the trees on the far bank still stands this old milestone, the 4 indicating the miles to Kendal where the canal used to end.

Pointing by the wall, Grizzly said, "look a bluebell and a pinkbell. How lovely."

Then in a few yards, Allen called out, "a seat. Lunchtime?"

This very substantial seat had been given by Gerry Stoker and commanded a fine view, so Uncle Eric replied, "yes, why not."

Then after about 20 minutes and feeling refreshed, we posed for our picture.

Soon after starting off again, Shaun called out, "we should leave the canal here."

Our way was down a field and through kissing gates either side of a narrow road and on via a stile to the road at Force Bridge.

"It's over the bridge and then left", said Shaun.

"Oh I remember this too", said Grizzly. "We will soon get a good view of Force Falls."

From the viewpoint, Tetley pointed, "look there is a heron."

The lane is a cul-de-sac for traffic, but continues as a path under the bridge carrying the link over the River Kent, to the narrow lane on the far side.

"I wonder if lane ran through, before the bridge was built?", mused Allen.

"Quite possibly", replied Uncle Eric.

After the falls the river, now tranquil, continues its journey towards Morecambe Bay. "Some nice reflections", commented Southey.

At the property called Park Head, Uncle Eric said, "we go left here."

The path crossed pasture to a stile and then on up to stile into Levens Park.

Sheep were grazing and this ewe and lamb stood posing for Dad.

"Oh nooo...", cried Allen. "Sheep picture free story well and truly gone now."

In Levens Park the way is never in doubt being along a wide grass path. Soon after entering, Tetley whispered, "there are some of the herd of black fallow deer."

The path led on, with the river below and away to our left, finally bringing us to the A6 at Levens Bridge.

"It's right", called out Shaun.

"We should cross the road, as soon we go left", said Uncle Eric.

The track climbs to cross the A590 and on across a pasture that was full of cows, to come to a ladderstile, where beyond we went diagonally left to a gate. This led to the road at Levens Village, where we turned right.

"Look at that cherry blossom. Its wonderful", called out Little Eric.

Coming to a fork, Uncle Eric said, "we go left."

This took us past some houses, the front wall of one being covered with flowers. "How beautiful", breathed Tetley.

At the next junction Shaun said, "we take the road descending left."

This led to Cinderbarrow, where at a sharp corner, we climbed the stile right.

Walked the field, climbing to the road by Brigsteer Woods, crossing to go through the gate opposite and then immediately through the gate to the left.

Now along the clear path to the left of a plantation and on up between woods as directed by the waymarks. Then at a waymarked post, we kept on, descending to join a path descending on the right, to pass this lovely tree...

...and onwards to two gates, our way being through the one to the right, on to a track that soon brought us to the car park at Sizergh Castle.

Here walked right through this and then on ahead through a gate and up the field to kissing gate. After a few yards it was left through another kissing gate. Then descended, the path looping left to a gate onto a narrow track, and so to the road by the Strickland Arms, where a short stroll right brought us to the cars.

"That was a lovely walk, Uncle Eric", said Southey. "Thank you so much for suggesting it."

"Yes", agreed Grizzly, "I have thoroughly enjoyed the day."

"You're welcome, lads. Glad you liked it", he replied.

"I guess you will be going for some refreshment?", said Tetley.

"Aye lad. The cafe a Low Sizergh Barn beckons."

Here Dad had a nice pot of tea and a delicious piece of chocolate tiffin.

He said, "it rounded the day off to a tee."

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