Along the Kendal Scars.

Start. Queen's Road.

Route. Queen's Road - Tram Heights - Kettlewell Crag - Kendal Golfcourse - Cunswick Scar - Scout Scar - Helsington Barrows - Bradleyfield - Kendal Racecourse - Brigsteer Road - Queen's Road.

Notes. “This Scout Scar must surely be one of the finest viewpoints in England, for you can see at least 120 hills and mountains in the Lake District, Yorkshire and Lancashire from it, as well as uninteresting features such as Blackpool Tower far across Morecambe Bay”, the late Harry Griffin. Never a truer word spoken, except today, low cloud cloaked everything above 650ft, including the summit of Scout Scar. Greys and greens were the hues of the day, unkind conditions for the photographer, I've always recorded my passing and have since I was a spotty 10 year old wielding a Kodak Instamatic, why should today be any different.

I parked on the small car park just off Queen's Road, this marks the start of a narrow tarmac lane, known locally as The Tram Heights. I ascended this lane, tarmac soon gave way to an overgrown track, this was once a tram line carrying limestone from the small quarries under Kettlewell Crag, to be used in the construction of Kendal Prison, long demolished. Just before said crag at an obvious path junction I left the tram line to ascend steep slopes guarding Kendal Golfcourse, small arrows guided me north-west over close cropped turf to reach a stile and path leading to a foot-bridge spanning Kendal Bypass, over I went to start the short easy ascent of Cunswick Scar.

Today the large cairn that marks the summit and usually gifts the walker with stunning views gifted me with nothing, green valleys of Lakeland dissolving into grey emulsion, distant views were zero. What it did mark was a change in direction, south above the cliffs of Cunswick and Scout Scars, almost three miles of wonderful rambling, cliffs once washed by salt water guided me passed Scar Wood and Barrowfield Wood, overlooked by the Mushroom (shelter). After passing the trig point and dry stone wall I aimed for a large cairn on the edge of Helsington Barrows. This rather substantial cairn marks a major path junction, my route was to the left, up the hill and through a landscape of stunted vegetation, Helsington Barrows is life on the edge, flora clinging to life in poor shallow soil interspersed by rivers of limestone scree, it's an amazing place to wander through. Too soon I passed through a metal kissing gate allowing access to Kendal Racecourse, as short stroll through this green field led to a narrow stile leading onto Brigsteer Road, the short walk that followed lead down hill back to Queen's Road and the waiting car.

view route map.


Seen from the Tram Heights, Benson Knott rises above the grey rooftops of Kendal Town.

Under cloud one of Lakeland's lesser heights, Potter Fell.

Seen over Kendal Golfcourse, Cunswick Scar.

Viewed from near the summit of Cunswick Scar, Kendal Fell.

The Kent valley and the village of Burneside as seen from the summit of Cunswick Scar.

From the summit cairn on Cunswick Scar the grey mass of Whitbarrow rises from the flat lands of Lyth Valley.

Walkers stride out, destination Cunswick Scar.

From the path leading to Scout Scar, views back to Cunswick Scar.

Cunswick Scar seen over Scar Wood.

On Scout Scar looking to the Mushroom.

Wandering along the edge of Hodgson's Leap, high above Barrowfield Wood with hazy views over Lyth Valley, taking in upper Morecambe Bay and Arnside Knott.

North along the edge of Scout Scar.

Grey on the horizon, Arnside Knott seen from near the cairn on the edge of Helsington Barrows.

This rather large cairn with views to Whitbarrow marked a change in direction, north-east over the hill and back to Kendal.

View taken to the north with the big hills of Lakeland just starting to appear under the cloud base.

Descending through Helsington Barrows with this view for company, Benson Knott above Kendal.

Helsington Barrows a landscape of stunted vegetation and limestone scree.

Viewing home, my back garden, dark across the Kent valley The Helm.

This good path carried me across Helsington Barrows.

Viewing Kendal Fell from Kendal Racecourse, quite honestly I can't ever remember horses ever racing here, certainly not in my lifetime.

One mile to go.

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