A Circuit from Milnthorpe.

Start. Milnthorpe.

Route. Milnthorpe - Dallam Park - Heron Corn Mill - Beetham Fell - Slack Head - Leighton Beck Bridge - Hawes Water - Challan Hall - Waterslack - Eaves Wood - Castlebarrow Hill - Pepper Pot - Holgates - Far Arnside - Park Point - Arnside Point - White Creek - Blackstone Point - New Barns - Arnside - Sandside - Dallam Park - Milnthorpe.

Notes. A Circuit from Milnthorpe including Dallam Park, Gait Barrows and Eaves Wood, a splendid walk taking in a large slice of everything this limestone peninsular has to offer. Parkland, limestone grassland, coppice woodland and a large chunk of estuary. Spring is upon us, the woodland is alive with bird song and insect life, spring flowers carpeting the forest floor, fields littered with an abundance of over energetic lambs, but best of all, the hollow echo of walking boots on solid ground. Two weeks of dry weather has allowed the land to drain, no strength sapping mud to paddle through, no slithering around waiting for the inevitable fall. I can honestly say the last time I walked on hard ground was at least four months ago. Come along, today you could do this walk in your carpet slippers, if you so wished.

I left Milnthorpe via the Old Bridge allowing access to Dallam Park, with way-marked paths under foot I wandered south, on reaching the Heron Corn Mill car park a narrow bridleway ushered me to a tarmac lane, this lane guided me to a finger-post promising this was the path over Beetham Fell to the Fairy Steps. With yellow arrows to keep me on track I wandered on, through limestone grassland then coppice woodland, on reaching a small cairn topped with a stainless steel direction indicator I joined the path signed Slack Head. The boring bit next, just under a mile of tarmac wandering between plush properties, when the lane descended to Leighton Beck Bridge I stepped into sheep pastures alive with new born lambs. Through large fields bordering the woodland of Gait Barrows I traversed, bright yellow marker posts keeping me on track, at the top of the hill a gate and stile allowed access to a number of paddocks surrounded by scrub and woodland. The path ushered me through said paddocks to access cow pastures above Hawes Water, I descended to the tarn where I broke out the sandwiches and coffee.

Snack over I wandered north, the path swung south round Hawes Water, after passing through a narrow stile I wandered behind Challan Hall, crossed two narrow tarmac lanes then railway line before accessing Eaves Wood. Once in Eaves Wood way-marked paths shepherded me between the plantings of Victorian entrepreneurs before depositing me at the Pepper Pot. The view from this limestone obelisk was stunning as always, I sat a while before traversing the limestone pavements on Castlebarrow Hill, when the hill ended I descended to a path allowing access to Holgates. South between holiday homes I wandered, the salt water and shifting sands of Morecambe Bay drawing me like a magnet to the coast, after crossing a field I strolled through Far Arnside the promise of clearing skies spurring me on. I stopped for another brew at Park Point before taking to the sands. With hard sand under foot I made a b-line for Frith Wood, another coppice wood this time above the cliffs at Blackstone Point. I entered the woodland before rounding New Barns Bay to start the short walk to Arnside.

Once through Arnside the foot-bridge at Arnside Station safely carried me across the railway line, I was now striding out along the track bed of the Hincaster/Arnside Railway, the old surface makes for a wonderful foot-path. Along the sea front at Sandside I ambled, (tired legs don't ramble very well), once passed the Ship Inn a narrow ginnel lead to a quiet road, this road once part of the railway line makes for a safer option than the main road running along the sea front. Passed a couple of industrial lime kilns I wandered, once at the road junction I crossed the main road to join the railway once more. This path guided me along the edge of the River Bela back into Dallam Park to re-join my outward route at Old Bridge.

view route map.


Milnthorpe Bridge and the River Bela at Dallam Park.

Farleton Fell seen from Dallam Park, we were up there the other day traversing the row of cliffs running out of shot to the right.

Snowdrops on Beetham Fell.

Looking to Slack Head from pastures above Leighton Beck Bridge.

Sylvan Gait Barrows.

View taken across Hawes Water, Challan Hall backed by Eaves Wood.

Hawes Water on view from Challan Hall.

Remains of Emes Cottage in Eaves Wood, I've always known this as the woodsman's cottage, would somebody like to enlighten me on who Emes was?

Stunning views from Castlebarrow Hill.

The dark finger of Humphrey Head as seen from the coastal path west of Far Arnside.

The serrated edge where limestone meets the shifting sands of Morecambe Bay, and the Newton Fells rise on the far side of the estuary.

Looking to sun kissed cliffs on the Silverdale coast.

Rambling round New Barns with this view for company, the Newton Fells and the limestone cliffs of Meathop Fell.

Drenched in late afternoon sunlight, Arnside.

Stunning views to the mouth of Lyth Valley from the salt marsh north of Arnside.

In sunlight and shade my guide to Sandside, the Arnside/Hincaster rail link.

Whitbarrow seen across the upper reaches of Morecambe Bay.

Nearing Sandside looking back to Sylvan Arnside Knott.

Let the channels of the Rivers Kent and Bela guide the eye to Lyth Valley.

Seen from Dallam Park where salt marsh meets sand Farleton Fell.

Looking to Haverbrack Bank from the edge of the River Bela near Milnthorpe Bridge.

Reflections in the River Bela, backed by the single arch of Milnthorpe Bridge and views into Dallam Park.

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