Date - 16th October 2018 Distance - 4.25 miles
Ascent -
Map - OL7
Start point - Road junction near Grayrigg Hall (SD 5795 9769)


Summits Achieved

No summits were reached on this walk



It was Monday and Dad and Uncle Brian were at Elaine's at Feizor as usual. We were enjoying warming mugs of tea and delicious cake made by Grizzly and Little Eric.

"Which of our pals have gone today?", asked Little Eric.

"Just Ping and Richard", replied Tetley.

"That's unusual, Dad only taking two of our pals. Often there are four", replied Allen.

"Dad and Uncle Brian will be having a good time as always with plenty of people to chat to", said Southey.

"Aye", said Grizzly, "it was a momentous day on 14th February 2009, when Uncle Bob and Dad called in for tea and the gorgeous lemon meringue pie. Dad and Uncle Brian had been hundreds of times since. Best tearoom in Yorkshire."

"That was the day we first climbed Giggleswick Scar", commented Tetley.

"Talking of walks, there is a day down for a walk with Uncle Eric tomorrow", said Little Eric, looking up from the iPad.

"What are the weather prospects?", asked Southey.

"Well, it looks to be cloudy with some drizzly rain at times but drying up later."

"Not bad enough to call it off then", replied Shaun. "There are a few walks recently from the Westmorland Gazette that Uncle Eric has let us have a look at. One of the shorter ones, like that from Grayrigg would perhaps be the best due to the weather."

"Well wherever, it will be good to be out in the fresh air", replied Little Eric.

After Dad had spoken to Uncle Eric that evening, it was the Grayrigg walk that was decided on. Here is our tale.


The Walk

As Little Eric had said the day was cloudy with light drizzle on and off for the most part, drying up towards the end. As a result we spent most of the walk tucked inside the rucksack as otherwise we would have got very wet. However a little camera attached to the outside allowed us to see where we were going.

The route to the start was via Kendal taking the A685 and on the Grayrigg. As we got to the village Tetley said, "we take the side road left by the church and just beyond Grayrigg Hall where the road swings left there will be space to park."

We greeted Uncle Eric, calling out, "good morning."

"Hello lads, good to see you all."

A signpost.....

...indicated our route along this concrete track.

The puddles in the track are an indicator of how wet and treacherous it was underfoot today.

I guess a Scotsman would say it was a dour day", said Allen.

"We will come to a small beck where we leave the track and strike off half left", instructed Shaun.

This grassy track led to a gate, where beyond we crossed the pasture to the left of a large tree and over the stile and then on across the next field below a rise on the right. The next stile, just fence slats, was in a dip and led ahead to a footbridge.

However the path and access to the bridge was completely blocked by a fallen tree.

"Oh heck", called out Southey, "whatever are we to do."

Dad suggested, "let's walk along higher up the bank to come to the footbridge and see if we can find a solution."

Here they surveyed the situation, Uncle Eric saying, "there's a gap in the tree branches, so sliding down the bank will let us get to the bridge."

This shot gives some idea of the steepness of the banking.

From the far side the extent of the foliage causing the block can be seen.

"Phew", exclaimed Grizzly, "I'm glad that is done."

All this effort was to cross Whinhowe Gill.

Walked on upstream coming to the right of the tumbled down Whinhowe Barn that was in need of considerable repair. "Seems such a shame", remarked Little Eric.

A gate barred our way but Dad could not open it.

"Come on", said Allen.

"I'm trying", replied Dad.

Despite both he and Uncle Eric tugging hard it would not come open, it being clear that this was due to the wood having swollen.

"Let's try on the other side of the ruin", suggested Uncle Eric.

Here they were able to climb a low wall, to continue onwards. Following the line of the beck, the next two fields were crossed to a stone step stile.

This was to stick in Dad's memory for a long time. He climbed onto the through stone, swung his left leg over and placed his foot on the other side, the stone being at a bit of an angle. With the damp conditions its surface was like grease, and despite his grip on the wall, when Dad swung his right leg over, his left foot slipped off. The result was he fell in a heap in the tiny beck by the wall, and also catching his bum on the stone on the way down.

"Oh heck", called out Tetley. "Whatever is going on."

"Are you all right", called out Uncle Eric from the other side of the wall.

Dad got up and replied, "yes, nothing broken, just bruises and injured pride."

Uncle Eric was naturally most concerned, as we were too, and made Dad stand a few minutes to recover. We noticed that when Uncle Eric climbed the stile his foot nearly slipped, but thankfully he managed to keep his feet, much to our relief.

"What and adventurous walk this is turning out to be", remarked Shaun, as we set off once again.

The path skirted a boggy area and came to a narrow lane by a clay pigeon shooting hut.

"We go left" called out Shaun.

It was pleasant along here the ground falling away to the right. Grizzly called out, "there are some nice autumn colours in that tree on the right."

The lane brought us to the road at Tarnside with its barn with a clock tower.

"It's across the road and along the stony track", called out Shaun.

Beyond a gate it was over the big field to a stile at it's left end. In the next field crossed to a gate and then on with a hedge on the left and down past Tarnside House and on finally to the farmhouse at Thursgill. Walked through the farmyard and out via a gate and on to descend the grassy track to the footbridge near Bye Mill. This was blocked by a huge landslip from the field above.

"The adventures go on", cried Southey.

"It seems to be our day for the footbridges to be blocked in one way or another", laughed Tetley.

So clambered across the fallen earth then over the gate onto the bridge.

Scruntinising the map, Shaun said, "the beck changes its name at this bridge. Upstream it is Whinhowe Gill, which we have followed and crossed at the previously blocked footbridge...

...but down downstream it is now called Thursgill Beck."

"We go right now through Ghyll Bank", advised Shaun.

Here this cockerel stood proud.

Reaching the main A685 road, Shaun then said, "We cross and follow that track opposite towards Sunnyhollow Farm."

Over the cattle grid and then through a gate coming to a waymark.

"OK, which way?", asked Little Eric.

"Well", replied Shaun. "We completely ignore the arrows and instead climb up the grassy bank on the left and in front of Ivy Bank, Blackett Bottom."

The lane led on passing the sewerage works into Grayrigg and the main road, passing this gate with an interesting fastening. "Worth a picture for the story", mused Allen.

On the right is the imposing Punchbowl House. This was once a pub. It closed in 1922.

"We should cross the road walk a little way right to a stile on the left into pasture", instructed Shaun.

Over this it was ahead to then swing left past the hill towards Grayrigg Hall...

...and to a stile onto the road and then right to the car.

"That was a good walk over totally new ground", said Tetley.

"Yes" agreed Allen, "despite the obstacles and Dad's mishap at that stile."

"We have enjoyed it Uncle Eric", said Southey, "thank you for suggesting it."

"You're welcome", lads.

"There is just one final thing Dad", said Grizzly. "Taking our picture for the story."

Well readers, you didn't think you were going to get a way without us making an appearance!


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