Date - 10th October 2018 Distance - 8.5 miles
Ascent -
Map - OL5/OL7 Start point - A6 summit (SD 5534 0656)


Summits Achieved

No summits were reached on this walk



It was Monday and Uncle Brian and Dad were at Elaine's Tearooms at Feizor as usual.

"Which Hug pals have gone today", asked Southey.

"Bamburgh, Dylan, Terence & Wallace", replied Allen.

"Lots and lots of our pals have been over the years", added Grizzly.

"We mustn't complain", said Shaun. "Dad usually takes us in, when we go there after a walk."

"These cherry and ginger scones are delicious, Little Eric", enthused Tetley, helping himself to another one.

"As is the peach and apricot slice, Grizzly, said Allen. "It's scrumptious. Can I have some more tea please Shaun?"

"Sure pal."

"You really are a tea belly", laughed Tetley. "That's your third mug. You truly do take after Dad."

Finishing off a piece of cake, Southey said, "if I recall correctly there are some days down this week to walk with Uncle Eric."

"Yes pal", agreed Allen. Then picking up the iPad, and finding the calendar, he went on, "either Tuesday and Wednesday." He then brought up the weather forecast. "It looks that Wednesday will be the better of the two. Good job it's not Friday or the weekend, as those days are to be wet and stormy."

"Are their any particular plans?", asked Little Eric.

Shaun replied. "Dad and I have devised a round route to complete the northern part of the old road over Shap, from the book by Wainwright, which we are sure Uncle Eric will be happy to do."

"Great cheered", Allen. "Here's to the walk."

It went ahead as planned following Dad's conversation with Uncle Eric that night.


The Walk

Wednesday dawned with clear blue skies and we were to enjoy a warm day for the time of year. "The best day of the week", remarked Tetley.

Dad got his kit ready, and loaded in the car, this being our cue to get settled on the front seat, calling goodbye to Uncle Brian as we ran out of the door.

"Are we going to Uncle Eric's, first?", asked Southey.

"No pal we are meeting him at the start at the layby at Shap summit on the A6", replied Grizzly. "It is easier for Dad to do this as he can use the motorway to the Shap turn-off, the head south to the start.

Uncle Eric was there before us, and we called a cheery "good morning." to him.

"Hi Lads, good to see you", he replied.

They were soon ready and we got settled in the rucksack, eager to be off.

Shaun said, we go north and take the signed stony track off to the right and walk the same route as far as Wasdale Old Bridge, when we did the Birkbeck Fells in May."

Allen had the Wainwright book, and said, "he says there is an old mile post to the right soon after the gate onto the track."

Eyes peeled it was Southey that called out, "there it is.

Over the years much of it has been covered by the vegetation, and had it not been for Dad and Uncle Eric stamping the ground, even less was actually showing.

"Is that some writing?" said Grizzly, pointing to some indentation.

"Yes", agreed Uncle Eric, "but it is too worn to be made out. At least we have seen it which is good, as without doubt it is easily missed."

"The next thing to look out for is a pile of stones that are the ruins of what was long ago an inn", said Allen.

The track descended now and soon, Tetley pointed, this must be it."

Looking ahead Little Eric said, "that's Packhorse Hill, which we climbed in May."

We make no apologies for including our picture again, at the summit. [show offs. Dad]

Strolled on below the hill and the past the area of felled forestry, to come to Wasdale Old Bridge. "We cross", instructed Shaun, "and then very shortly climb the stile over the fence"

Here too, the trees had been felled, but we soon picked up the path that led on and on meandering through the woodland eventually to a stile out onto open fell.

"Look at the beautiful butterfly", said Little Eric. "please try and get a picture Dad."

The path now appeared to go ahead but led us too far left and reaching a track.

Shaun was scrutinising the map. "We are on this dotted track", he said pointing at the map, but we should be on this footpath down to the right by the fence. It is the fact that the woodland has been felled here too that has caused us to get off route."

So it was necessary for Dad and Uncle Eric to strike off right across the rough terrain and the gain the proper path by a fence, that led on passing this wooded copse.

Becoming a track this led down to another track beyond a gate, where there was this view of Shap Wells Hotel.

"That's Crosby Ravensworth Fell, beyond the M6", said Allen.

"We climbed that in March 2015", replied Tetley.

"However do you remember all these facts", said Southey in wonder.

"Don't know pal. They just seem to stick in my mind."

Well, never shy, we again make no apologies for including our picture sitting on the trig point there. [double show offs! - Dad]

"There's a waymark, pointing right", said Little Eric

"We follow that", said Shaun.

The narrow path now meandered across the rough ground and reach the access road by Shap Wells Hotel and down to pass in front.

"Look at that sign about the red squirrels, in local dialect", pointed Allen. "Take a picture Dad."

"We have to find the path from here that heads north", said Tetley.

It was not quite as easy initially, because having walked past, it was only when we turned back that the waymark pointing between two electricity poles, could be seen.

Inside the conifer woodland there was no distinct path. "It could be any one of these ways between the trees", said Grizzly, with a confused look on his face.

So we took what seemed to be the best, but this was to turn out to be wrong, as we were far to far to the right. However this did mean we visited the Queens Monument, adding further interest to the walk. "Quite beautiful", commented Tetley.

The plaque on the base told that it was -

To Commemorate
The Accession Of
To The Throne
Of These Realms
20th June 1837


"I am glad we have got off track to see this", said Southey. "This monument is so tucked away, I just wonder how many people actually do visit it."

"I agree", said Allen, "but now we have to get back on track.

This was interrupted by Little Eric calling out, "look there is a long freight train heading north."

Dad still had the camera in hand, so snapped off a shot. Traffic can also be seen on the M6.

Heading back into the woodland, Allen whispered, "look there are red squirrels." They were climbing the trees and scampering across the ground.

"Wow", whispered Southey, "what a privilege!"

So now tried to find our way. Really what we should have done was to return to the start of the path by the hotel. Instead we went up to a wall that would if followed left have brought us down to the proper path. Our attempt to get along here however were stopped by vegetation.

So backtracked and then Uncle Eric pointed. "there are some posts here that must have formed part of an old fence. Seems to be sensible to follow those down."

"I agree", replied Shaun. "Thank you Uncle Eric."

This indeed soon brought us to the path. Looking left, Dad said, "there is the footbridge we should have crossed."

Shaun suggested, "sometime we will have to drive to the hotel and see if we can find the right path at the start."

Turned right to follow the path at times in a tunnel under the rhododendrons.

After a while we popped out into a small open area where there was a seat with a nice outlook.

"Good place for lunch", suggested Uncle Eric.

"Oh yes" cried Allen, rubbing his tummy in anticipation.

"Not only are you a tea belly but you are always hungry, just like Dad", laughed Tetley.

It was nice to sit and take stock of the walk so far, as we munched away on our sandwiches, cake and mugs of tea.

"Will you take our picture please Dad?, asked Little Eric.

"Of course."

The rhododendrons around must have been 20ft high and so dense that it was almost impossible to see the path.

Setting off again we entered another rhododendron tunnel that brought us to a wall. Here crossed the stile and then went immediately right to another stile in a few yards. Now in woodland followed the path to exit into a huge clearing where the trees had been felled. Crossed this on a winding path into trees for a short way then over stile to open fell, where these sheep were grazing on a bank.

"Humph" growled Allen, as Dad got the camera out. "It seems to be impossible for there to be a sheep picture free story."

The path led on by the wall and fence passing by the railway cutting. Reaching a tall double fence, we climbed the gate in the first and then through a gap on the right in the second, to then descended down, still by the railway.

We could hear the approaching steam engine hauling the train to the summit.

"Ooh this is exciting", called out Southey.

Dad had the camera out ready and got into a good position to take this series of pictures. The locomotive is LMS Stanier Class 8F 48151.

"What impeccable timing", exclaimed Shaun. "See, we were meant to get lost on the path from the hotel."

"Yes" agreed Uncle Eric, who is of course interested in railways and was as pleased as us to see the steam train.

The excitement over we now walked on pass over a stile still close to the railway. And to round off the railway interest in this walk we saw a long log train heading south.

"What a super day we are having", said Southey, gleefully.

Now the route was to climb half left over the hill and on down to a stile onto the Old Shap Road by the cement works, turning left to follow this on and on.

At one point it crossed Blea Beck, the water bright blue on this sunny day. The vehicle on then right is on the access road to Shap Wells Hotel.

And from the same spot Dad took this shot looking back along the Old Shap Road.

So onwards, eventually coming out on to the A6 that for a few hundred yards had been laid on the old road. Then it was left down to Old Wasdale Bridge and so on to retrace our route to the start.

"What a super walk", said Allen. "Thank you Uncle Eric and Dad, on behalf of us all."

"You're welcome lads", replied Uncle Eric, "it has been a good day."

So our goodbyes were said and we settled in the car for the drive home.


shopify analytics