Date - 18th December 2019 Distance - 9.5 miles
Ascent -
Map - OL7
Start point - Scout Scar car park (SD 4885 9240)


Summits Achieved

Name Height (ft) Height (m) Grid Ref
Cunswick Fell 679 207 SD 4915 9430
Scout Scar 765 233 SD 4866 9198



Tetley and Southey walked in to find Allen with tears in his eyes.

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

"It has been really nice to get out for so many walks recently, but the circumstances are so sad. Uncle Brian's death has meant Dad is free to take us out, but we cannot fully understand how hard it is for Dad to come to terms with this. I also miss Uncle Brian so so much."

"I know pal", agreed Tetley. "It is the same for us all.

"All we can do is try to give Dad all the support and love as he comes to terms with the loss", went on Southey. "What I do know is that Uncle Brian would be happy that Dad is taking us out for walks, and still going to Elaine's for lunch, and meeting up with friends."

"Yes pal", sniffed Allen. "But it is still very hard."

Shaun, Grizzly and Little Eric had arrived during this exchange. Shaun said, "we heard what you said and Dad has told us that he plans to walk on Wednesday, like Uncle Brian would wish, so we have to come up with a plan."

"But", said Grizzly, "it's time for tea and cakes first."

This brightened Allen's face as he went to get the mugs and plates.

"So what's the cake today?", asked Southey.

Little Eric replied. "Well as it is nearly Christmas I have done mincemeat slice, while Grizzly, has made chocolate caramel shortbread."

"Two of my favourites", cheered Allen, who helped Shaun pour the tea.

So soon we were all as content as we could be in the circumstances.

"The cakes are delicious", said Shaun. "You two never fail to please."

"You're welcome", replied Grizzly and Little Eric together.

Now our thoughts turned to where to walk. Tetley said, "if we look back on the walks list to before any of us went with Dad, we should be able to find some we have not done, at least in part, as there are few areas we have not traversed."

"Good idea", agreed Allen, booting the laptop.

This took a few minutes, enough for us to refill our mug and recharge our plate.

"It's a good job we did a large batch", Little Eric said to Grizzly.

"Yes pal, the tins are nearly empty."

So starting from the top of the spreadsheet, Allen scrolled down.

"Here"' pointed Tetley. "How about number 161."

"I'll put a filter on to check it has not been walked since", replied Allen. A few seconds later he said, "no, we have not done that one."

Having got it from the binder, Shaun said, "it is a circle starting along Cunswick scar."

Scanning the route Grizzly said, "we have definitely done some of it, but even so that will be a long time ago."

"Sounds worth giving it a go", replied Allen. "And it we be a new story too."

"Last time we were up that way, I am sure I bagged Cunswick Fell and Scout Scar, two of the Wainwright Outlying Fells", said Little Eric. "I know this walk we are proposing does not take them in, but if we could twist Dad's arm, then Southey could bag them."

"Oh I don't want to put Dad to the trouble as I will never complete that challenge", replied Southey.

Draining his mug and picking up the description sheet Allen said, "I'll go and see if Dad is agreeable to doing this walk, and float the idea of visiting the summits."

"I still don't mind", called out Southey as Allen trotted out of the door.

He was soon back. "Yes the walk is on, and Dad says providing he feels OK, he will take you to the summits."

"I truly have the very best Dad in the world", replied Southey.


The Walk

We were up early, as Dad wanted to be walking by 10:00.

How do we get to the start?", asked Southey, as Dad backed up the drive.

"We go to Kendal", replied Tetley. "Into the town and the start of the main street, then turn left uphill and follow the signs for Underbarrow. This road takes us across the link road, then soon we climb up onto the scar. It is the second car park, for Scout Scar, the site of an old quarry."

On arrival Dad soon got ready and we jumped into the rucksack and got settled.

"OK", said Shaun, "we walk back about 50 yards on the road to the other car park, and head out along the access."

A signpost by the road read Cunswick Fell 1.5 miles. "That's our first objective", stated Dad. Sensing Southey was about to protest, Dad went on, "and no arguments."

You will notice the people with the dogs. Two we could see as we approached, but on passing we saw there were more still in the car. A quick count indicated there were about ten. "Blimey!", exclaimed Little Eric.

The day was dry if a little cold, but perfect for a walk, even if rather wet underfoot after all the rain.

Beyond the gate at the end of the tarmac a muddy path led on through the woods to a kissing gate out to the open fell of Cunswick Scar. Keeping parallel with the wall on the left to a corner, where as indicated by a waymark we rounded this left and continued by it.

The scar stretched away into the distance. "There's still snow on the higher fells", commented Little Eric.

Allen called out, "we drop down then up across the brown area to the large cairn on Cunswick Fell."

"Yippee, one down", cheered Southey. "Come on pals, lets get settled for our picture."

We looked about, Grizzly pointing, "that's Kendal, or as it is known the 'Auld Grey Town'."

Uncle Eric lives there, so we gave him a wave of our paws, and called out a cheery, "hello. Hope we get to walk with you very soon."

"OK", said Dad, "get settled again Lads. I think we have to return to that fence line we crossed to find the kissing gate off the scar."

"Hmm", replied Shaun. "I think it is nearer this way to be honest."

He was to be proved right too. Dad walked to the fence line and its junction with the wall, only to have to backtrack towards the summit, to actually find the kissing gate. "That will teach me to listen to you Shaun."

Beyond Dad descended carefully the steepish muddy, rocky and leaf strewn path... a track, where the waymark indicated we should cross and keep on ahead to reach the edge of the wood.

Exiting into pasture, Tetley said, "there is no doubt about our onwards route."

This led directly to a stone stepped gap stile into Ash Spring Wood, and followed the clear path through this to exit via a similar stile. The waymarked then indicated it was left by the wall.

Dad strode on, then stopped and hauled the camera out.

Thinking he was going to take the sheep, Allen said, "you promised no sheep pictures in this story."

"Yes you did", added Southey in support of this pal.

"I know", replied Dad. "It's that shapely tree I am planning to take. I will keep to my promise Allen."

Onwards and gently down to the access road to Cunswick Hall, the oldest house in the parish of Underbarrow.

Once a pele tower that is recorded as having been demolished around 1582. The current farmhouse dates from the 19th century and incorporates some small parts of 16th century fabric. Some wall and a two light stone mullioned window that is said to be the oldest glass in Westmorland.

"We cross the access, and take the path signed Crook Road", instructed Shaun.

Beyond the kissing gate the route drifted diagonally right away from the wall. A waymark then directing us along the path between hawthorns, and on across pasture by the hedge on the left.

"We have to cross to the other side of the left boundary", advised Shaun. "Through a narrow gap stile in a short section of wall. Mary Welsh (the author) says you will have to wriggle through."

Arriving Little Eric said, "it's not all the narrow. You have had far tighter ones to get through."

"Like that kissing gate at Black Moss Tarn", laughed Tetley.

"Aye lad", replied Dad smiling. "Even when I had taken the rucksack off, it was still an extremely tight squeeze."

Once through Shaun said, "it is on in the same direction."

The field was pretty boggy in places so initially Dad kept by the hedge to near the field end. Then we crossed right to pass through a gap and then immediately a gate.

"That's a fine view towards the Kentmere Fells, even if partly obscured by cloud", said Grizzly.

"So what can I see?", asked Southey.

Tetley obliged. "The snow covered fell to the left is Yoke. Then on the right from the back, Harter Fell, Kentmere Pike and Shipman Knotts. Rather lost in the background and barely in view is Mardale Ill Bell."

"Now it is just down to join the track to Fell Gate farm, and then walk to and through the buildings.", instructed Shaun.

Pointing Southey called out, "there's a group of walkers coming in the opposite direction, so we can see the route to take."

We passed them on the access track Dad saying a cheery, "good morning and hello." These were the only other walkers we saw, apart from those on Cunswick and Scout Scars.

Wound on through the farm to a cattle grid. "We don't cross, rather it's through that waymarked gate left and climb to another gate", called out Shaun. Actually it would not have mattered as there was no fence on the track beyond the cattle grid.

After this kept on over the fields with the wall to the left.

Soon Little Eric called out, "there's a ladderstile over the wall."

"We ignore that and keep on shortly with the fence on the right", replied Shaun.

This then brought us to the minor road Capplerigg Lane. "We go left", said Shaun.

This leads very shortly to Long Wood farm. Shaun pointed right and again issued instructions, "our route is along that bridleway to Lindreth Brow."

"That's what the sign reads", agreed Allen.

Dad strode out, Shaun again advising, "when we get to a divide take the right fork."

According to the published instructions we should be able to see Windermere sparkling away to the left", said Grizzly.

We looked craning our necks but to no avail. "Seems the trees have grown and obscured it since the walk was published", replied Southey disappointedly.

"Well it is at least 20 years", commented Little Eric.

After the fork the fine track passed below the slopes of Bell Hill.

"It maybe winter, but the gorse is beginning to show its blossom", pointed Little Eric.

"The views are stunning of the valley with its patchwork of stone walls", commented Tetley. Looking at the map he went on, "Chapel Beck runs through on its way down to Underbarrow."

"Such beautiful countryside", agreed Grizzly. "I think some pictures for the story are in order."

"OK", replied Dad as he hauled the camera out once again.

In the above the buildings are High Crag and Low Crag. While below, those are Beckside.

A further fork was reached. "Which way?", asked Southey.

"Left", replied Shaun.

Soon our progress was stopped again, as Dad turned the camera on these stark ruins of a once substantial barn.

Definitely in need of some serious TLC", laughed Allen.

"Here's Lindreth Brow", pointed Grizzly.

"However do the owners get to and from?", questioned Little Eric.

"Along the bridleway?, suggested Grizzly.

Shaun had his head buried in the map, then looking up said, "we passed a track off right a little way back. That leads onto a bridleway, which going right leads to Beckside, and then along its access to the Crook - Underbarrow road."

"Glad we worked that out", replied Allen with relief in his voice.

Past the house, a narrow path led on to a gate. "We follow the waymark pointing right", instructed Shaun.

Down and across this large pasture with the pond that we thought had formed due to all the rain!

The path was clear sweeping left to a gate. Beyond Shaun again was quick with advice, "on ahead to the far right corner, where we will join Chapel Lane."

This, a narrow hedged track, descended steadily to Underbarrow. Here met two ladies. One lived in the house on the left and had been visited by a friend. Dad said "hello". We were spotted one lady replied, "I love the your companions in the rucksack."

Made our day!

So now left into the churchyard. "We have been here before", said Tetley. .

This is All Saints. The first church on this site was built in 1547, to replace a pre-Reformation chapel nearby. The second church replaced it in 1708, and the present church was built in 1869. The sign indicated the church was open, but Dad could not move the latch, and anyway he had very dirty boots, so as Grizzly said, "it was perhaps as well."

Leaving by the main gate, Shaun almost immediately said, "it's up that signed track left."

The waymarks directed us into the garden of a house and then round the back of the garage to a stile into a field and over the next on the far side.

Onwards towards Nook Farm. "The stone step stile is in the wall to the left of the house", called out Shaun.

So then crossing the track we went through the opposite gate or over the adjacent stone step stile. Onward past the buildings to a gate and then along the track.

"We ignore the first kissing gate in the hedge to the right. Then at the corner go right beside it", said Shaun,

So through the facing kissing gate and up over the hill to another stile into a huge pasture.

"So, where now?", asked Little Eric.

Shaun's replied, "go ahead over the brow, so we can look down the slope."

There Little Eric said, "ah, I see, now down to that stile."

Originally this had been just a stone gap stile, but now there are either side two wood step stiles.

Clearly now we could see below the waymarked kissing gate into the grounds of Hagg Cottage, and then skirting left of the house, out onto the road.

We could see and hear a waterfall in full spate, but being hidden behind a tall hedge, Dad was unable to get a picture, so we had to be content with this of Underbarrow Beck.

Having crossed, Shaun said, "very soon we go left at a signpost, then climb the slope following the waymarks on the electricity poles and then drift right uphill to a gate in the top right."

After this walked a little way by the wall on the left. "Now we need to drift right to look for a waymarked post on the skirt of Knott Hill", advised Shaun.

"Not another one we should rename 'Well'", laughed Tetley.

After the post the path led through a wall gap and then a little left to a stile, where beyond wev crossed diagonally left to a metaled track and finally a gate in the corner on the right.

"This is Gamblesmire Lane", said Allen.

"Yes pal", agreed Shaun. "We follow it all the way to Cunswick Scar."

Initially a steep up and down, with Dad then carefully getting past a short flooded section, then ever up.

"That shooting we have heard seems to be getting closer", commented Southey.

Well after a while we could see men with guns away down to the right and vehicles parked beside a track going left to Cunswick Hall.

Shortly we came to a gentleman with his dog standing by the lane. "Could I have a moment of your time he asked Dad", politely.


"The shoot is due to end very soon, but as there is a man with a gun in the next field on the lane, would you mind just standing with me for a few minutes for your own safety."

"Not at all", said Dad.

He then noticed us, and thought is was great that we came along. Dad told him our website and he said, "I'll get my wife to look it up."

The klaxon sounded, the gentleman saying, "that's the end, you can walk on now."

Through the gate, Dad walked on the path drifting right then left with this fine example of a limekiln tucked in the slope.

Soon then we reached the scar, and turning right followed the outwards route to the car park. However instead of entering, Dad crossed the road and through the gate left, for the short steep path up onto Scout Scar.

"Oh Dad, you are the very best", cheered Southey.

The shelter known as the 'Mushroom', marks the Wainwright summit at 233m, 765ft.

The facing quadrant on the left was sheltered from the wind that had got stronger now, ahead of the rain that yesterday was not forecast until evening, but the gentleman at the shoot, had said was due at 3pm.

"Come on Southey get settled with us for our picture", called out Allen.

Looking at the map, Tetley said, "the actual highest point is about 100 yards or so back along towards the road, at 235m."

"OK lad, we'll walk back that way and see", replied Dad.

There are some bushes and some exposed rock amongst the grass, but nothing to mark where exactly this is.

Looking back to the mushroom, Grizzly said, "well that still looks higher to me."

"Mmm", agreed Tetley.

With a purpose to this stride in quick sticks we were back at the car.

"Are you going to a cafe?", asked Little Eric.

"No lad. With the prospect of imminent rain I just want to get home."

A good decision, as indeed it was raining by the time we got to Morecambe.

"Thanks for a good day", said Tetley.

"Yes", added Southey. "And Dad, thank you so much for taking me to the summits."

At home once settled we had warming tea and cakes. Dad had tea too with mince pies in the comfort of the lounge and in the warm.


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