133. Flookburgh to Ulverston

Today I am starting off where I hit land 3 years ago when I did my cross Bay charity walk with daughter from Silverdale. I park up in the station car park at Cark as I intend to get the train back from Ulverston.

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The Sticky Toffee Pudding company – Flookburgh

I set off walking towards Flookburgh, then continue down a straight road that takes me past a place where I make Sticky Toffee Pudding – my kind of employment! I head towards West Plain farm, which sits close to Cark airfield and right next to the sea wall. The morning has an autumnal feel about it, the grass is sodden from yesterdays downpour, the sky is overcast and there is a slight chill in the air. The sea wall is easy walking as i head west towards the River Leven estuary, which flows from Windermere into Morecambe Bay. I round Cowpren Point, walking north now until I reach Sand Gate. I follow the Cumbrian Coastal path, which is a bit of a joke as a Coastal pathy or as any Path really, inland to Cark. I am almost back at where I started this morning and very close to the station. I head out north along the B5278. At the entrance to Holker Hall, I must make a decision on my route. I would have preferred the shorter, quieter route along the foreshore, but Holker Estate do not like walkers walking on their land or foreshore! Needless to say I would never advocate the use of any of their businesses, two can play at that game! I could continue along the B5278 all the way to the bridge near Haverthwaite, but the road has little footpath, a small amount of verge and quite a bit of no verge with twisty bits. The only safe option is to follow the Cumbrian Coastal Path which takes the high route over How Barrow.

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Looking towards Ulverston over the Leven Estuary

The climb up is quite easy and I am soon crossing very wet fields, from one farm to the next. About half a mile after passing Speel Bank Farm, I notice my glasses are missing. I had been carrying them resting on the top of my fleece. I’d dropped them somewhere, which I have done 6 or 7 times before. I walk back about half a mile looking for them, I then walk back the half mile I have just walked back. I decide to go back even further. No joy. It has happened before, but I have continued to dangle them atop my fleece. This time I have lost them for good. Serves me right!! The upshot of this is an extra 4 miles over tough terrain and almost 2 hours lost. Which has drained me!

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A tranquil Bigland Tarn

I press on past Bigland Tarn , which is perfectly tranquil and still. The CCP then descends to the main road, although the descent down a path which has been become the local stream. I pass numerous GOML signs left and right as I descend. I am dumped back on a very busy B5278 for a short distance, which confirmed my fears of it being very dangerous. I head west along a private road towards Roudsea Wood nature Reserve, the single track road is also busy and I have to stand back into the trees to let cars pass. I pass through the reserve and out into a field which then continues to the footbridge which crosses the River Leven to Greenodd.

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Crossing The River Leven at Greenodd
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The end of the line for the Ulverstaon Canal at Canal Foot

What awaits me on the other side is almost 1.5 miles of verge walking along a very busy A590 dual carriageway, is quite like walking up along the M1. How the CCP can be routed along such a road is mind-blowing!! I survive the A590 and eventually turn off down small and quiet lanes, which lead me to Canal Foot. Basically, Canal Foot is a small hamlet on the Leven Estuary where the disused Ulverston Canal used to link up with the sea. Although the canal is still full of water, the lock gates have rotted away. I suspect the canal has been dammed at its seaward end. I follow more lanes past the large GlaxoSmithKline (British pharmaceutical company) factory. I am running late now because of my specs and I eventually locate the station, where I catch the 15:15 train back to Cark. I have some luck in not having to pay my rail-fare of £1.85 as the conductor was very busy and the journey time was only 8 minutes. I offered to pay but was waved on by the Conductor.

Not a bad days walking, even though I did lose my specs. BTW, I have some spare old ones, although I do not need to wear them all the time.

Distance today =  19 miles
Total distance =   2158 miles

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