A Short Loop from Myers Farm.

Start. Myers Farm. (Leighton Moss Visitors Centre).

Route. Myers Farm - Storrs Lane - Leighton Moss - Grisedale - Leighton Hall - Summer House Hill - Yealand Manor - Deepdale Wood - Deepdale Pond - Cringlebarrow Wood - Yealand Storrs - Yealand Hall Allotment - Hawes Water - Moss Lane - Red Bridge - Trowbarrow Nature Reserve - The Trough - Storrs Lane - Myers Farm.

Notes. This is quite a decent loop taking in marshland, farmland, parkland and dense woodland, in Summer the woodland is almost too dense to walk through, in Winter the paths are boot sucking mud, but that won't put us off will it.

After parking on the large car park at Myers Farm (RSPB Leighton Moss Nature Reserve) I noted a few new signs, “Visitors Centre parking only”, feeling guilty I made a mental note to visit on my return. But first a short walk north along the tarmac of Storrs Lane, you can use the pavement running parallel to the road but that means popping into the Visitors Centre first, you access the pavement via the back door. Anyway I wandered to the entrance to Leighton Moss, entered the reserve then walked across the causeway. Leighton Moss boasts the largest reed beds in the north-west of England, home to a wide range of animals, trouble is the reeds are so dense and high you don't get to see much. You can use the public hide but everyone had bigger lenses than me and camouflage jackets, I felt inferior so walked on passed.

Passed guided me away from the moss ascending through Grisedale, on reaching Grisedale Farm I stepped onto the tarmac of the narrow access lane. The lane in turn guided me to Leighton Hall and a steep ascent of Summer House Hill. I climbed the hill, passed through a wicket gate then crossed the flat summit before descending to a finger-post promising access to Deepdale. This path I followed, over muddy woodland paths above Yealand Manor, followed by a traverse of a sheep pasture surrounded by woodland, at the far side of the field another finger-post greeted me, again pointing the way to Deepdale.

Deepdale has an attractive mix of low limestone crags, moss covered boulders, gentle rising terraces and dense woodland of sessile oak, ash and lime, apart from Eaves Wood the only woodland of it's kind in Lancashire, oh and Deepdale Pond, a large green muddy puddle in a hollow, a "doline" a natural depression in the limestone. I followed the path recommended by the finger-post, over some interesting limestone scars followed by a steep descent, a wander round the pond followed before a steep ascent to gain access to the path I'd just left.

Onwards to Yealand Storrs, with a broad path under foot I wandered on, once at the small scattering of houses and a farm I entered Yealand Hall Allotment, another tract of woodland, through which a Land Rover track passes, my guide to a narrow stile accessing sheep pastures above Gait Barrows Nature Reserve, I crossed said stile then descended to Hawes Water. An enigma in Limestone country as water nearly always seeps underground, believed to have been formed by a number of "dolines" collapsing to form a deep depression. Once at the tarn with heavy rain falling I turned left, wandered through the tree covering to join the tarmac of Moss Lane.

Moss Lane in turn guided me to Trowbarrow, just before the railway line at Red Bridge a finger-post announced the start of a permissive path to Trowbarrow, this I followed through a couple of gates before ascending into Trowbarrow Nature Reserve. Once the workplace of hard rock minors Trowbarrow is now home to many species of rare flora and fauna, climbing routes have been forged up it's unique cliff faces, all named after David Bowie albums. From this abandoned quarry slowly being re-claimed by nature I wandered into The Trough, a unique geological feature cutting across this small limestone peninsula, I'll not go into detail but The Trough ushered me back into Storrs Lane from where I joined the foot-path running parallel to the road. Safe from traffic the path lead into the rear of the visitors centre, I entered, drawn up-stairs by all the noise and smell of cooking I found a jolly good cafe, well it was lunch time.

view route map.


Leighton Moss Nature Reserve with views to Yealand Hall Allotment.

Seen from Grisedale, Summer House Hill.

Viewing Cringlebarrow Wood, I'll be picking my way through there shortly, but first....

....stunning views over Leighton Hall from the ascent of Summer House Hill.

Marked on the OS map as a cairn, it's actually the remains of a Gothic summer house the hill takes it's name from.

I've just joined the path to Deepdale, the view, over the parkland of Yealand Manor, Yealand Conyers and a distant Hutton Roof Crags.

In Deepdale picking my way over muddy paths.

Deepdale Pool, a natural depression in the limestone, easily missed.

I emerged onto the Yealand Road next to this, I think it was once a Pinfold an enclosure where stray livestock were kept, rounded up by the Pinder (or Pound Keeper) and held until the owner paid a fine for their release, I'm probably a mile from the mark, if so please let me know.

Arnside Knott seen over Gait Barrows.

Hawes Water a gem in Silverdale's crown.

Challan Hall seen across Hawes Water.

Trowbarrow Nature Reserve....

....once the home to hard rock minors, this is the Shelter Stone, a refuge during blasting.

In The Trough looking towards The Mabson Memorial Gate, I think I'm right in saying Mabson was a mountaineer and the gate represents a carabiner.

Grisedale Wood seen across the reed beds of Leighton Moss.

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