A Short Circuit from Helsington Church.

Start. Helsington Church.

Route. Helsington Church - Windy Howe - Brigsteer Road - Helsington Barrows - Burnbarrow Scar - Brigsteer Road - Helsington Church.

Notes. Sounds like an electrical fault, but it’s not it’s an interesting ramble through some alluring scenery. On a pleasant blue sky day like today we were forced to keep it short and sweet, time being against us, things to do, people to see (in our bubble).

After parking at Helsington Church we spent a moment absorbing the views over Lyth Valley, stunning as they were we had to get a move on. To the left of the church a finger-post points the way, our route traversed Windy Howe, first north then north-east, as we crested to top of the hill the views over Kentdale opened out, just as good if not better than over Lyth.

We continued to a metal kissing gate allowing access to the next field, after traversing said field we exited via a stone stile onto Brigsteer Road, a short stretch of road walking followed to access a gate at a small parking area. This gate allowed entrance to Helsington Barrows, with a good path under foot we ascended through mature woodland, the path climbed under the twisted limbs and passed gnarly trunks of mature Yews, slender Birch reached into a blue sky, we passed Hawthorn, Beech, some kind of Fir and Ash, sadly the latter will soon vanish from our beautiful landscape, Ash Dieback is predicted to wipe out 95% of of the Ash genus. After ascending the hill we reached a gate in a wall, we passed through said gate before turning left.

With a prime example of a limestone dry stone wall to guide us, a green trod under foot we wandered south. The landscape this side of the wall was sparse, no mature trees just stunted vegetation fighting for a root hold in thin limestone soil, the bones of the landscape breaking through the surface. We continued, the wall still guiding us until reaching a gate above Burnbarrow Scar, we passed through said gate before descending to Brigsteer Road, from the tarmac surface of Brigsteer Road it was a short walk along the lane leading back to our starting point.

view route map.


From Windy Howe views across the kent valley.

Viewing Oxenholme and Natland backed by the long ridge of The helm.

Our route passed under the limbs of this mature Yew on Helsington Barrows.

Fine example of a Silver Birch.

From a gap in the trees views over Kendal to Benson Knott.

The high tops of the Whinfell Ridge, Ashstead Fell, Castle Fell and Whinfell Beacon.

Making steady progress through Helsington Barrows looking to the grey cliffs of Whitbarrow.

Adventures through an extraordinary landscape.

Across the skyline, beyond Lyth Valley, a wonderful sweep of Lakeland mountains.

Viewing the cliffs of Scout Scar, off route today.

Views to the south over Back Spring Wood and Brigsteer Park with the green fields of Sizergh Fell to the left and the small community of Brigsteer the right.

Heading back, in the trees behind the car park the Church of St John.

Helsington Church or to give it it's official name, Chapel of Ease of St John Helsington.

From the parked car views over Lyth Valley to Whitbarrow.

And again from the parked car, in the distance the shapely summits of the Coniston massif.

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