Birkrigg Common.

Start. Bardsea (Coast Road).

Route. Bardsea (Coast Road) - Bardsea - White Gill Lane - Willington Wood - Red Lane - hill fort - Great Urswick - White Gill Lane - Birkrigg Common - stone circle - Bardsea (Coast Road).

Notes. I've got Kirsten in tow today, she's got this new fangled mobile phone that gives directions, we could end up anywhere, we're supposed to be heading up Birkrigg Common via Great Urswick, I've brought a map she can go where she likes.

We parked on the Coast Road at Bardsea, our route took us up into the village hunting for White Gill Lane, along White Gill Lane to reach a finger post directing us through Willington Woods en route to Red Lane. On entering Red Lane we turned left, what seemed like a long walk over tarmac saw us cross the junction with Mountbarrow Road eventually to reach the junction with Urswick Road, opposite the junction a green lane leads through fields, watch out for two psychopathic Curlews they've got rather long beaks and don't take kindly to visitors, we ran the gauntlet to reach the remains of Skelmore Heads Bronze Age Hill Fort before entering Hen Parrock Lane, this steep green lane lead between dry stone wall into the village of Great Urswick. As far as I could see this delightful village boasts two pubs and a restaurant, all closed at eleven thirty on a bank holiday monday morning, at least it still has a Post Office, it's on Church Road. Sufficiently refreshed a footpath behind the church lead us through fields along the edge of Urswick Tarn to reach a tarmac lane, right then immediately left up a steep hill to enter White Gill Lane, we left the lane at a cattle grid to ascend Birkrigg Common, from the trig point the views over the bay and surrounding country side are quite special, we lingered a while before descending to the Druids Circle. Just east of the stone circle a gate allows access to a green lane, we followed this down hill, as we reached the first house another fingerpost gave directions to the Coast Road, this path took us through delightful park land, passing a large pond home to a angry looking Black Swan, before a stile allowed access to the busy Coast Road, a short stroll along the beach brought us back to the car.

The said mobile phone, after five minutes fiddling, it went back into some sock thing she keeps it in for protection only to be removed to answer texts, there was plenty of them, maybe next time we head out together she'll have read the instructions, watch this space.

view route map.


From the car park views across the wide expanse of Morecambe Bay.

Views over Ulverston Sands.

In White Gill Lane looking west.

The delightful path through Willington Wood.

Strolling over the tarmac of Red Lane with limited views to Birkrigg Common.

Striding across the fields above Great Urswick with views to the east.

Above Ulverston The Hoad Monument, erected in 1850 to commemorate the life of John Barrow, founder member of the Royal Geographic Society, Second Secretary to the Admiralty, explorer chart maker and general good egg.

Birkrigg Common as seen from the Bronze Age Hill Fort above Great Urswick.

Views across lush green pastures taking in Bardsea Park and the sands of Morecambe Bay.

Descending Hen Parrock Lane with views to Barrow on the Irish Sea coast.

Wandering the streets of Great Urswick looking to Urswick Tarn.

Great Urswick seen from the south.

On Birkrigg Common looking to Black Combe.

The summit Birkrigg Common with views across Morecambe Bay.

Skelmore Heads Hill Fort passed earlier.

Chapel Island seen from Birkrigg Common, home to a ruined chapel built in the 14th century by the Cistercian monks of Conishead Priory, a refuse for travellers caught out by the fast rising tides as they crossed the bay from the priory at Cartmel.

Morecambe Bay from Birkrigg Common.

The monument above Bardsea Park.

Dating from between 1700-1400 BC the Druids Circle or Temple commands fine views across the sands of Morecambe Bay, excavations in 1921 discovered cremated human remains.

A small well hidden pond passed as we reached the coast.

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