South from Milnthorpe return via the Morecambe Bay Coast.

Start. Milnthorpe.

Route. Milnthorpe - Old Bridge - Dallam Park - Heron Corn Mill - Mill Lane - Beetham - Beetham Park - Fell End - Thrang Moss - Yealand Storrs - Cringlebarrow Wood - Summer House Hill - Leighton Hall - Grisedale - Leighton Moss- Storrs Lane - Red Bridge Road - Silverdale Golf Course - The Row - Lambert's Meadow - Burton Well Wood - Bottoms Lane - Stankelt Road - Silverdale - Shore Road - The Lots - Silverdale Cove - Cove Road - Holgates - Far Arnside - Park Point - Arnside Point - White Creek - Blackstone Point - New Barns - Arnside - Arnside Railway Station - Arnside/Hincaster Railway (disused) - Sandside - Summer House Point - Milnthorpe Bridge - Milnthorpe.

Notes. I looked out the window this morning, the sun was shining, cotton wool clouds drifted across the heavens carried on a brisk breeze. The forecast promised the odd thunder shower, I looked skyward in disbelief, God was in his heaven what could possibly go wrong?

After parking in Milnthorpe, Old Bridge built in the 1700s guided me into Dallam Park, until 1813 the twin arches supported the road to the port at Sandside, today it's the perfect walkers entrance to Dallam Park. Once in the park way-marked paths guided me south depositing me in the Heron Corn Mill car park, I continued south along the lane to access Beetham. From this quaint cluster of houses with cobbled forecourts, historic Wheatsheaf Inn and Gothic St Michael's Church I rambled west, the tarmac lane I followed guided me up hill towards Slack Head, part way up a finger post announced I'd reached the path to Hale, said path traversed a large field before passing behind Beetham Hall, a fortified manor dating from the 14th century. The next field path lead to the edge of Hale where I stopped to peruse the map. I entered the woodland of Beetham Park, a way-marked path then ushered me to Fell End. Through dense woodland I wandered, over limestone scars all the time at the mercy of small yellow arrows, arrows that proved reliable, the path ejected me into a smart caravan park, could I find my way out of it, could I hell. After seeking advice from a resident I escaped turning left when I stepped onto a narrow tarmac lane.

With tarmac under foot and a thunder storm now raging over head I wandered on to the junction of Brackenthwaite Road and Thrang Brow Lane, at this parting of the ways a finger-post also pointed to Yealand Redmayne. I left the road crossed a stile then descended through woodland into an absolute mire, a week of heavy rain, the passage of Silverdale's finest beef cattle had turned the paths over Thrang Moss into a boot sucking morass, brambles and thistles also hindered my progress, the right of way was illusive to say the least. A number of times I floundered returning to my starting point to try again, in a last ditch attempt I took a compass bearing, on said bearing I struggled on, an hour of monotonous grind saw me progress just half a mile, I stumbled onto the road near Yealand Storrs covered in a liberal coating of mud with wet feet, at least the rain had stopped. If you scan the route map my passage wasn't as simple as it looks, I doctored the track so it's possible to see where I eventually went.

As I'd been following the path to Yealand Redmayne I continued, entering Cringlebarrow Wood, this woodland walk was not without it's problems, mainly mud and brambles, I eventually entered pastures above Deepdale. With a good path under foot the first for ages I wandered on to Summer House Hill, sat down, had a brew and drank in stunning views over Leighton Park. Brew over my descent took me to the right of Leighton Hall, I followed the track through Grisedale before traversing Leighton Moss. The track across the moss deposited me in Storrs Lane, I turned left, wandered to the junction of Storrs Lane and Red Bridge Road then swung right passing Silverdale Railway Station to access a path traversing Silverdale Golf Course, this well manicured trod deposited me in The Row, a delightful hamlet comprising of old and modern housing. A finger-post on the left promised access to Silverdale, said path ushered me through Lambert's Meadow then Burton Well Wood before depositing me in Bottoms Lane, I turned left to join Stankelt Road, a short walk into the village followed where I was able to grab some lunch.

As I was covered in dried mud smelling like a damp dog lunch comprised of a couple of sandwiches stuffed into my bag to be consumed when I reached the coast. The green trod through The Lots guided me there via Silverdale Cove, Cove Road, Holgates and Far Arnside. I sat on the ragged edge where Morecambe Bay meets the cliffs and woodland of the Silverdale/Arnside coast, ate lunch, drank tea and allowed my energy levels to climb, it was a long(ish) walk back.

Guided by cliff top paths and the sands of Morecambe Bay I wandered back, via Park Point and Arnside Point and Blackstone Point, round New Barns and on up the estuary to Arnside. The old track bed of the Arnside/Hincaster railway then ushered me to Sandside, I passed anglers patiently waiting for the incoming tide and hopefully the fish it brings. I wandered back into Dallam Park via Summer House Point before following the River Bela to Milnthorpe Bridge. I crossed the single arched bridge to follow the road back to Milnthorpe almost eight hours after I set out.

view route map.


Old Bridge, dates from the 1700s, up untill 1813 it carried the main road into Dallam Park then over the hill to Sandside.

Dallam Park looking to Whitbarrow.

Farleton Fell as seen from Dallam Park.

The Heron Corn Mill, the interpretation board informed me, a mill has stood on this site since 1200, the current building dates from 1740.

St Michael's Church, Beetham.

Beetham Hall, a 14th century fortified manor, the hall has been in ruins ever since it was taken from the Royalists by Thomas Fairfax in 1644. It is now occupied as a farm house.

Striding out through pastures above Deepdale.

Resting on Summer House Hill enjoying views over Leighton Park.

The village pond at The Row.

Lambert's Meadow looking north.

Moss covered dry stone wall in Burton Well Wood.

View taken from The Lots, Hampsfell and the dark woodland of Arnside Park.

Enjoying lunch at the ragged edge where land meets the sands and salt water of Morecambe Bay.

Seen over the shifting sands and water filled channels of Morecambe Bay, Know End Point backed by Clougha Pike and the grey hills of Bowland.

Near Far Arnside looking to the long finger of Humphrey Head.

Wandering over the wet sand off Park Point en route to Blackstone Point.

Sea washed turf at White Creek, before I reached my teens we used to come picnicking along this stretch of coast, it was all sea washed turf from here at White Creek to Jenny Brown's Point, over the proceeding years the bay changed, the turf vanished, it's now returning, is this a snap shot of what's to come, and will I be fit enough to enjoy it.

Blackstone Point looking north.

Salt marsh north of Arnside with wonderful views over Milnthorpe Sands.

Arnside Knott viewed from the track bed of the disused Arnside/Hincaster Railway.

Wonderful silvery seascapes.

Near Summer House Point looking over the channels cut by the Rivers Kent and Bela, dominating the horizon High Street and it's lieutenants.

Built in 1813 to carry the new turnpike road to Sandside, the single arch of Milnthorpe bridge.

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