Landimore Marsh North Gower

In the absence of The Navigator, Paul and I followed a route, number 26 from the Cicerone Guide “Walking on Gower”.

This was all new to me although I have cycled in the vicinity.

Route.

We parked at the end of a lane in Landimore on the salt marsh and headed west under the woodland on Tor Gro. This area was used as a firing range in the Second World War, but is now a peaceful place to be.

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Where the track meets Burry Pill we stopped for a coffee and looked to our left to see the striking North Hill Tor which is the location of an odd named earth work, Nottle Hill Tor.

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This area can be flooded in high spring tides but there is a signpost for a high tide route.

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Today we were walking on a low tide and took the normal path up to Cheriton. At the bottom of the valley opposite a lovely old church we took the path signposted to Stembridge which crossed a number of fields with Burry Pill to our right.

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There was an old pack horse bridge to see which dates from at least 1500.

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At the paths end we joined a road for a short while before turning left onto another path which led us past Samson’s Jack a large standing stone. We also came across a field with huge turnips.

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Samson’s Jack is the  Gower’s largest standing stone  at 3.2 metres. Variously known as Mansell’s Jack or Sam(p)son’s Jack,  and legend holds that the stone holds such power as to equip its visitors with an answer to their most pressing question. When was lunch? The answer was not long and we found a comfortable place close to Weobley Castle.

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Refreshed we walked down to the coast path and headed back to the car.

 

 

 

 

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Lake District

Every October The Navigator and I spend a week in the Lake District. We were joined this time by my recently retired brother-in-law, Andy. Our base was in Lorton Vale which gave us access to the north western hills.

A map of the area with indications of our routes is below.

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The weather leading up to our trip (10th to 17th) had been dry for some time, would it last? In fact it went on and on and our waterproofs were of use only to keep the chill wind at bay.

After picking Andy up in Chester we headed north up the M6 with no traffic hold ups. Our usual practice of having a short walk on the route north continued and we turned off at junction 36 with an objective to climb the limestone outcrop of Holmepark Fell. The limited parking near Holme Park Farm where we had planned to take the marked path was full and so we nearly gave it up as a bad job. However as we returned a parking spot was found by Dykes Bridge and another path by Townend Farm. A close look at the map shows a crowded area of contours and our route went straight up a scree/mud path, an unwelcome climb after a long drive. However with suitable stops to admire the views we made it to the top and the limestone pavement. Our route down was a lot more forgiving and we continued of our journey to Lorton Vale and our cottage at The Hope Farm, an apt name for guys of our age!

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Sunday soon arrived and from our cottage we could see Scotland in the distance with good weather forecast. Our objective today was Mellbreak. A fell which seems to stand on its own, with a steep up, a walk across the top and a steep down.

Mellbreak

Mellbreak

 

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Views on climb

Views on climb

 

Are we going up there?

Are we going up there?

 

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Crummock Water and Buttermere

Crummock Water and Buttermere

 

North Summit

North Summit

 

Crummock Water & Buttermere

Crummock Water & Buttermere from the south summit.

On our way down we visited Scale Force, which was lacking force due to very little rainfall.

 

Scale Force

Scale Force

 

Scale Force

Scale Force

We walked back to the car, alongside the edge of Crummock Water.

 

Lonely kayakers

Lonely kayakers

 

Light failing on Crummock Water

Light failing on Crummock Water

On Monday Scotland was once again in view and this was going to be our benchmark for good weather and to avoid boring my reader it was like this until Friday! Today we were tasked with climbing Barf and Lords Seat and my quick look at the map indicated a short day, it was not to be!

We parked opposite the Swan Hotel and soon a footpath sign showed the way to Barf. We should have paid more attention to the route shown in Mr Wainwrights guide. The lower slopes of the hill are well known for two rocks painted white, known as the Clerk and The Bishop.

The white Bishop

The white Bishop

We were somewhat misled as we began to follow an obvious path which led to these outcrops. It went up steeply on scree and we turned away but it was still  a knee touching chin climb.

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A small ledge was found to have a coffee. Obviously by now we recognised we had taken a more “interesting” route up the fell and continued upwards until we were met with a rock face.

Towards Derwent Water

Towards Derwent Water

Bassenthwaite Lake

Bassenthwaite Lake

There was much chin stroking and false attempts at a way through but in the end we had to take off our rucksacks to enable a climb through a gap in the rock and then by judicious use of a spare bootlace lift the sacks up to safety.

The awkward step

The awkward step

From here the route became much easier and we were soon on the top of Barf and headed over to Lords Seat before descending through the forest back to the car.

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Towards Lords Seat

Towards Lords Seat

 

Summit Lords Seat

Summit Lords Seat

 

Looking back to Barf

Looking back to Barf

 

Just for me

Just for me

 

Towards Siddaw

Towards Skiddaw

 

Good crop of fungi

Good crop of fungi

Tuesday was to be an away day and we headed over to Ennerdale Water, a fairly quiet part of the Lake District. We were heading to Anglers Crag and Crag Fell again trusting in Mr Wainwrights guidance to a gently climbing path which we  ignored (missed).

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Our destination

 

Ennerdale Water

Ennerdale Water

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Good progress was made on the lakeside path until we realised the diagonal rising path we were looking for had not been seen (we did see it on the way back!). With yesterdays climbing experience fresh in our minds we struck upwards battling through bracken and whatnot until we made the top of Anglers Crag for a welcome coffee.

Anglers Crag

Anglers Crag

From here we were now on more obvious ground and continued to climb on good paths to the top of Crag Fell where we settled down for lunch.

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Path to Crag Fell

 

Looking down to Ennerdale Water

Looking down to Ennerdale Water

 

Towards Pillar

Towards Pillar

 

Towards Red Pike

Towards Red Pike

We could have returned downhill by a good and obvious path, but no, we took another “interesting route” which went over boggy ground and more bracken bashing, down to the lakeside and returned us to our car.

We woke to another good day on Wednesday although there was a chill in the air. Our target today was Grisedale Pike and Hobcarton Crag a sort of horseshoe. No doubt today we would have to pay for parking in one of Whinlatter Forest’s car parks, but no, the meter was covered up, result.

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It was a steady pull up to the summit of Grisedale but the views were well worth it.

 

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Ridge to Hopegill End

Ridge to Hopegill End

 

View from Grisedale

View from Grisedale

 

Another view

Another view

 

Lunch

Lunch

 

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The Navigator and I realised that there would be an early finish today and so we gave the youngster the chance to extend his walk to take in Hopegill Head and Whiteside which he of course did whilst us old ones had a leisurely lunch and a stroll down Hobcarton Crag back into the forest and the car. I even had time for a visit to the fleshpots of Keswick before Andy came home.

The week is flying by and here we are at Thursday already, with our venue Carling Knotts and Blake Fell near the shores of Loweswater.

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Carling Knotts

Carling Knotts

View down to Loweswater

View down to Loweswater

The climb up to Carling Knotts went well, perhaps hill fitness is happening.

Me

Me

We had lunch overlooking Cogra Moss before returning towards Holme Wood.

Cogra Moss

Cogra Moss

It was here we gave Andy another chance to extend his walk straight down through the woods, across the valley floor and up towards Low Fell where The Navigator explained there would be a good view down to Buttermere. The B Team strolled down a wide green path to High Nook farm and back to the car near Watergate Farm to await Andy.

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The hill Andy was heading for

There had been some confusion here as time was getting on and no sign of Andy. After a couple of walks up the lane to obtain a signal my mobile rang with Andy telling me he was in Thackwaite Village! We eventually met up without the need to call out the mountain rescue team.

Friday morning was the only day we could not see Scotland and the day was overcast all day. We were off to climb to  Greystones and Broom Head.

A diversion was planned to look at Spout Force which like the previous waterfall we had seen earlier in the week there was little water.

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Spout Force

From here we cut through the woods of Darling How Plantation to meet the path halfway up to Greystones. From here we headed on to Broom Fell from where we could see most of the tops we had climbed throughout the week.

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Towards Broom Fell

 

Greystones summit

Greystones summit

 

Cairn on Broom Fell

Cairn on Broom Fell

Start of descent

Start of descent

Following lunch we headed down through the valley to the car. Although we knew this would be an early finish we did not extend Andy,s day and he stayed with us whilst we paid a visit to the Whinlatter Centre and were astounded at the cost of some of the mountain bikes on sale.

Sculpture at Whinlatter Centre

Sculpture at Whinlatter Centre

 

Fungi

Fungi

This was without doubt the best week of weather we have experienced in the Lakes in October and if this is global warming, bring it on!

 

 

 

Abercastle Pembrokeshire

Today’s walk (5/10/15) was a coastal walk on the Pembrokeshire Coast Path based at Abercastle.

Route

Abercastle

Abercastle

Abercastle

Abercastle

We walked inland to start and soon came across the cromlech Careg Sampson. From here we headed south west to the village of Trefin where we stopped for a coffee break.

Careg Sampson

Careg Sampson

The route headed west taking in Ynys Barri – The Navigator thought of my childhood where visits were made to Barry Island the seaside resort not that far from Cardiff.

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We were now back on the coast path and headed back to Abercastle via Porthgain.

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Porthgain

Porthgain

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Abercastle

Abercastle