SMEARSETT SCAR, POT SCAR, WHARFE & AUSTWICK from FEIZOR

 


Summary

Date - 23rd February 2018 & 20th March 2018 Distance - 6.75 miles
Ascent -
1000ft
Map - OL2 & OL41 Start point - Elaine's Tearooms, Feizor (SD 7900 6768)

 

Summits Achieved

Name Height (ft) Height (m) Grid Ref
Smearsett Scar 1191 363 SD 8024 6780
Pot Scar 1155 352 SD 7950 6788

 

Preface

Allen and Tetley trotted into the room to find Southey looking out of the window and seemingly rather tearful.

"Whatever is the matter pal?", said Tetley, putting a paw round his shoulder.

"I am worried about Dad. He seems to be rather down in the dumps lately."

"I know", replied Allen. "It is just that he has a lot on his plate and so has got a little stressed out. It is not made any better by the fact that February was the month the Grandad Bill died, and although it is some years ago, it still affects him. He has had periods like this before, but they will pass and Dad will be fine again."

Just then Shaun arrived with the tea and Grizzly and Little Eric with the cakes.

"Ooh great", called out Tetley. "We need that to cheer you up, Southey."

Allen got the plates and mugs, meanwhile, Little Eric announced, "Grizzly had made chocolate caramel shortbread, and I have done some peach and apricot slice."

"Mmm, will be scrumptious as always", breathed Tetley.

So with mugs charged with steaming tea, Grizzly passed the cakes round.

"Love the fruit slice, Little Eric", called out Shaun.

"The caramel shortbread is delicious", cheered Southey, who was looking happier.

Shaun then said, "I bring news of our next walk, on Friday. When Dad and Uncle Brian were at Elaine's they chatted with Uncle Leo and Aunt Pat. As you know they are walkers too, and so we are going with them."

"Fantastic", cheered Little Eric. "It will be so lovely to have their company, and it will do Dad the world of good as there will be plenty of laughs.

"I do not know exactly where we will walk", said Shaun.

"Well that will make for a nice surprise", replied Allen. Then raising his mug, "here's to Friday!"


About a month later we had a day arranged to walk with Uncle Eric. We knew that he had not climbed these summits, so Dad suggested this walk to him.

"Are you sure you don't mind repeating it", asked Uncle Eric.

"Not at all, I love walking that area", was Dad's reply.


As for the description and pictures below these relate primarily to the day with Uncle Leo and Aunt Pat. We hope you enjoy our tale.

 

The Walk

"I will be having a meal with Uncle Leo and Aunt Pat after the walk", said Dad.

"Right ho", replied Grizzly. "We will get our picnic ready to have in the car."

"A least I won't have to carry it in my rucksack for once", said Allen.

This all done and Dad having got his gear stowed, we called our goodbyes to Uncle Brian and dashed out to the car. Dad's new car has heated front seats so we were as warm as toast as we drove to Elaine's. It was a lovely winter day, but the wind on the tops was rather cold.

Taking the turn off the A65 Dad explained, "I will be having a pot of tea before we set off."

"No surprise there", laughed Tetley.

"Well Aunt Pat and Uncle Leo, always have a coffee prior to the walk."

"Don't use them as an excuse", replied Shaun sternly.

So after all that, Dad got ready and we quickly settled in the rucksack. Uncle Leo had explained the route, that started by walking up through the farm.

"Look", called out Tetley. "There's Brian and Gerry."

To explain, some while ago Elaine acquired these donkeys from Margery, another customer at the tearooms. Telling Dad and Uncle Brian about this, she said, "I am trying to think of names for them."

"Well", said Uncle Brian, "as long as you do not call them Brian and Gerry", then immediately realising that he should have kept schtum.

So...Brian is on the left and is the father of Gerry. They are very partial to carrots and extra strong mints.

Striding on up the field the ladderstile was crossed in the wall, then onwards in the same direction to reach the brow and then descend into the valley.

"That is a superb view of the scar looking back", remarked Allen.

Uncle Leo said, "the large pile of stones on Pot Scar summit can be seen on the furthest rise."

At the wall corner the path to Stainforth was now ignored to go left by the wall and climb the stile in the facing wall. This year there had been plenty of snow across most of the country and on the day with Uncle Eric, there was remains drifted up against the wall.

Over the stile the path climbed steeply for a short way, then branching left the ascent continued contouring round to the trig point and shelter on the summit of Smearsett Scar.

"Picture time", called out Southey.

"It's a bit too windy to sit on top", complained Little Eric.

"We'll hold you", said Aunt Pat.

"Thanks", cheered Grizzly.

Looking around, Shaun called out, "look at those sheep. The farmer must have just been out with feed."

"Down towards Stainforth, the sun is lighting the valley. Might be a nice shot?", inquired Allen.

We had all been up here before, as had Aunt Pat and Uncle Leo many times. Pointing across the valley Southey called out, "there's the Celtic Wall." Again visited by everyone in the past.

Being a Yorkshire lad, Tetley said, "I know that you have taken Pen-y-ghent many times, but the view to it is dramatic from here."

"I get your drift", replied Dad, lining up the camera. There was a contrast in clarity of the air, today being a bit hazy, but on the day with Uncle Eric, much sharper.


"Right lads, time to get settled again", said Dad.

"OK", replied Grizzly, as we scrambled into the rucksack.

Shouldering this, Dad strode off along the scar, our next objective Pot Scar seen in the distance.

After a level section the ground dropped away and crossing to a stile, it was a short climb to the large pile of stones fashioned into a shelter that marks the summit of Pot Scar. The OS map does not show a spot height, but the summit is contained within the 350m contour area.

"I suggest we estimate the summit at 352m (1155ft)", said Shaun, who as ever is our map reader and guide.

On each visit we scrambled up the stones, Shaun carrying Little Eric on his back, for our obligatory picture. This was the one from the walk with Uncle Eric.

Settled again we continued, Uncle Leo saying, "a bit further on there is a fine view down to Feizor."

Continuing on a stile was climbed and then the path bent away right to climb a stone step stile in the wall to the left. Gentle descent brought us to a track, going left to come to another track that going left leads down to Feizor.

Our way was right, to shortly climb the stile over the wall on the left, to drop down below Wharfe Wood and through a gateway, then on over boggy ground that Uncle Leo kindly warned Dad about.

Eventually the descent levelled as we crossed a farm access, then over a facing stile and across more pasture. At a pretty footbridge, a stop was made for pictures, and here is Dad with Aunt Pat.

The ladderstile in the background was then climbed and a small plank footbridge crossed to soon then climb the final stile onto the road from Austwick to Helwith Bridge.

Turning left and at the next corner we branched right on the track to walk through the pretty hamlet of Wharfe.

"I always love to walk through here", commented Allen. "There should be some nice displays of snowdrops."

First by the lane...

...then by this little cottage...

...and finally on this bank.

This day our focus being on this beautiful display, meant we the sign on the gate giving access to a garage. The snowdrops were gone when we walked with Uncle Eric, being the reason the sign was spotted.

Dad said, "I wonder where it originated from. It predates the introduction of decimal currency in 1971, forty shillings being the equivalent of £2."

So now went left to come to a junction.

Pointing over the wall, Uncle Leo said, "these little remains were once long ago a mill."

What did catch our attention was this. Well of course!

We tried to research the mill on the Internet, but found little other than that there was once a cotton mill and a corn mill in Wharfe. Of which this site relates to we do not know.

It's right now", said Uncle Leo.

The track led us out to the road by Silloth House and Mill Bridge, turning right towards Austwick. A few yards on some horses were standing by a gate.

In a passing car a lady stopped to comment on us. We are never shy of compliments and Dad gave her our website address.

So into Austwick, passing the school and pub and then long a narrow lane right by houses to come out at the cross. Left now to soon go right along Pant Lane, that peters out for traffic but goes on as a track to Little Bridges. This runs beside Austwick Beck crossing twice by little stone bridges. The water was so clear.

"How lovely it is along here", called out Little Eric. "Thank you so much for showing us this Uncle Leo and Aunt Pat."

The track went left to the road, where we turned left the short distance to Austwick Bridge to take the track Wood Lane. Where it bent left it was over the ladderstile and across the field below the hill to another ladderstile onto Hale Lane. Turning right this was walked back to Feizor.

"That was a lovely walk. Thank you so much Aunt Pat and Uncle Leo", said Tetley on behalf of us all.

While we had our picnic in the car on each occasion Dad had lunch at Elaine's, of course.

With Aunt Pat and Uncle Leo, this had been pre-ordered. He had the delicious meat and potato pie with chips and vegetables, followed by blackcurrant crumble and custard and tea to wash it all down.

As Dad said on the way home, "it has been a lovely day in great company. It has done me the world of good."

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