A Circuit from Arnside.

Start. Arnside.

Route. Arnside - Hincaster/Arnside Railway - Sandside - Dalam Park - Haverbrack - Longtail Wood - Beetham Fell - Hazelslack - Black Dyke - Arnside.

Notes. This is a pleasant short walk especialy this time of year with the landscape dressed in it's Autumn gown, a circuit through the Dallam Estate, at this point I'd like a gripe. Over the past few years the Dallam Estate has become a bit of a pariah, blocking permissive footpaths, making others difficult to walk, discreet green signs have started appearing laying down the law of the land, or the law of Dallam, none the less it's still a terrific place to walk.

The day was grey, the forecast promised improvements, so I left it late before setting out, it was lunch time when I left Arnside. My route took me to Arnside Railway Station from where I stepped onto the track bed of the defunct Arnside/Hincaster Railway, now a fine foot-path, its surface ushered me to Sandside. Walking along the sea front I noticed one of the discreet green signs, it forbid anglers from fishing from the beach, announcing they were only allowed to fish from the public foot-path bordering the road.

On I walked keeping close to the edge of the estuary, it didn't take long before I rounded Summerhouse Point to enter Dallam Park. Rather than walk through the deer park, I opted to follow the narrow road passed Dallam Tower to access a foot-path leading to the tiny hamlet of Haverbrack. Wandering over the old mettled track through the village I was confronted by another green sign, no access, foot-path only, no horses, no mountain bikes, no argument there it was a footpath at the end of the day but a fair few residents vehicles use it. I left the lane at Wray Cottage, entering dense woodland, way-marked paths then guided me to Cockshot Lane where I was greeted by a finger post promising passage to Beetham.

Here I encountered another problem, I didn't want to go to Beetham, nor Beetham Fell, a permissive path running parallel to the lane I'd just left had vanished, well and truly closed off. Two options confronted me, wander down the lane to pick up another path if it was open or wander on to Beetham Fell before looping back, I opted for the latter, longer but far more pleasant.

After an easy ascent to a finger-post I turned sharp right letting Longtail Wood swallow me up, this was a superb stretch of path, above limestone cliffs, across broken scars, under ancient yew trees I wandered, when a faint path crossed the main trod I turned left. Yellow arrows now guided me through heavy vegetation, for a moment I thought I'd gone astray, then I emerged into a large field surrounded by woodland. I wandered to the south west corner to join a short stoney track through a small cops, this was a real ankle breaker, a beck had been partially dammed allowing water to spill into the next field, now I'm not saying that was deliberate but stepping over the stile meant stepping into a knee deep swamp.

I wasn't going back so braved the mire, shit up I wandered on, the going much easier, stiles aided my crossing of dry stone walls as I wandered through sheep and cow pastures. After passing Hazelslack Tower I opted to avoid Arnside Moss, instead following a muddy trod to Black Dyke Road, the tarmac surface then guided me back to Arnside with one advantage, my feet stayed dry and I got to show you the salt pits bordering the road, a past industry, the reason Arnside exists.

view route map.


Looking back to Arnside from the railway path guiding me to Sandside.

Sylvan Arnside Knott seen across the salt marsh north of Arnside.

The Kent Cannel at Sandside.

Views taken across the upper reaches of Morecambe Bay.

Sunlight dances across the White Scar cliffs of Whitbarrow, seen from Summerhouse Point (not marked on the OS map).

The Weir below Milnthorpe Bridge in Dallam Park.

Dallam Tower, named so because it was built on the site of an earlier pele tower. the present house dates back to the 1720s.

Castle Hill once boasted a 10th century Motte and Bailey Castle.

Looking to Milnthorpe from the lane through Dallam Park, the tower on the hill is not just a folly. St Anthony's Tower built by Henry Smithers as a monument to the great reform bill of 1832, a wealthy industrialist owning a number of mills on the River Bela, in essence it was a V sign to the owners of Dallam Tower whom rejected the bill.

The lane through Haverbrack.

Underlaid Wood across cow pastures.

A splash of colour near Hazelslack Tower.

The gaunt remains of 14th century Hazelslack Tower, built to protect the occupants and their animals from unsavoury passers by, Scots and Border Reveres spring to mind.

Big skies over Silverdale Moss.

Wandering over the surface of Black Dyke Road I get a glimpse of one of Arnsides passed industries....

....possibly the oldest, the humps and hollows are what remains of salt pits, this land would flood at high tide, the water was allowed to evaporate then the salt scraped from the floor of the pits.

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