Spindle Wood and Paddy Lane.

Start. Castle Green Road.

Route. Castle Green Road - Spindle Wood - Singleton Park - Paddy Lane - Greyhound Farm - Second Reservoir - Reservoir Cottage - Sedbergh Road - Castle Green Road.

Notes. Forty years have passed since I last set foot in the hills to the east of Kendal, today I took a walk through the woodland and green sheep pastures of childhood memories, a stroll down memory lane. Long school holidays saw us disappear into the hills after breakfast to emerge again in time for tea, the lower slopes of Benson Knott provided our playground, this was in the days before quad bikes, farmers could easily be out run, walls and gates posed little problem, we were light they could quickly be scaled, nothing was out of bounds, today I stuck to way-marked paths. I was surprised so little has changed, everything looked much smaller than I remembered, or maybe I was smaller then.

I parked on the lay-by opposite Castle Green Hotel a few yards from the junction with Park Side Road, facing the junction a narrow ginnel rises between high moss covered dry stone walls, a metal finger-post invited me to Spindle Wood and Paddy Lane, as I ascended the memories of a young boy came flooding back, I don't recall the climb ever being quite this steep though. At the top I popped out into green pastures, on way-marked paths I continued climbing, through gates and over stiles, small yellow arrows kept me on track, in no time at all I reached Singleton Park, the next stile allowed access to the tarmac surface of Paddy Lane. I turned north, a delightful stretch of road walking followed with stunning views over the Kent Valley. After passing over the cross roads at Greyhound Farm I reached a finger-post inviting me to Kendal via Fowl Ing, I left the lane to descend a farm track, when I was a kid this was a field path, it's a bit of a mess now. At the bottom of the hill I stepped between dry stone walls, after a few yards I was greeted by a narrow slit guarded by two slender gate posts, I passed through this to access an area of scrub land, the path descended passing Reservoir Cottage then under the west coast main line. After almost crawling through the tunnel, I was definitely smaller in those days, I turned left to follow the railway to a farm lane, which in turn guided me to Sedbergh Road, I descended to the junction with Castle Green Road then turned left, a short walk up hill followed before reaching the waiting car.

view route map.

home.

My gateway into the hills, it can't be missed, opposite Park Side Road where an invisible boundary marks the transition from Castle Green Road to Singleton Park Road.

Like walking down the barrel of a gun, there's no escaping this lane, over the wall to my left Castle Green Wood, the wall to the right guards Spindle Wood, take no notice of the OS map which has spindle wood half a mile to the south, we always knew this as Spindle Wood.

Strange ruins in the woods, there's a rather high tower to the left just out of shot, I'm taking a wild guess here but this could be the remains of some kind of wood turning mill.

Looking to Spindle Wood from a small stream forded en route.

Benson Knott seen from the fields near Singleton Park.

Melting into the horizon Kendal Fell seen over Skyline Wood.

Paddy Lane looking north.

Hazy views over the Kent Valley with Potter Fell dominating a blue/grey horizon.

Seen from near Greyhound Farm, Kendal Fell.

At the crossroads with Sedbergh Road and Paddy Lane, it just occurred to me, this stretch of road walking follows the edge of the Kendal boundary.

Over the rolling pastoral landscape that makes up the lower slopes of Benson Knott views to Kendal.

The Kent Valley and a hazy Potter Fell.

Another view north along Paddy Lane, the parked car marks the start of my descent.

Benson Knott seen from the field below Paddy Lane.

The farm lane leads to Jenkincrag Farm then down to Fowl Ing, it's possible to return that way.....

.....far better to pass through this gap and follow me.

This is sad, all that remains of what us kids called the Second Res, now disused it's a mere puddle compared to what it used to be.

Here is something that also pulls on the heart strings, Reservoir Cottage, the public footpath used to pass right by the kitchen door, a wonderful lady lived there whom used to keep us supplied with rather large glasses of home made lemonade, she was my aunt.

If I'd have stood here forty years ago I would have been under thirty foot of water, this was the First Res, now a nature reserve.

Looking to Reservoir Cottage across where the dam wall once stood.

The tunnel under the west coast main line, the last time I passed under it my head just touched the roof, today I was almost bent double.

Hazy views to Kendal Castle.

Kendal backed by Kendal Fell, the sprawling mass of houses is the council estate I was lucky enough to grow up on.

A final look across the fields to Potter Fell before I descend the farm lane, lets hope It won't be so long before I tread these familiar paths once more.

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