Lockdown Locals 1 – Cunswick Scar – Gamblesmire Lane

We are extremely fortunate to live in an area where we can walk from our front door and be in beautiful countryside. During Lockdown we have re-discovered some routes we hadn’t walked for a while and discovered some new ones we will definitely walk again. This series will show a few of those…

The first walk is a nice round walk beginning at Crook Road, just a little way past the Plumgarths Farm Shop on the outskirts of Kendal, up onto Cunswick Scar, along the top of the Scar to the junction with Gamblesmire Lane. We followed the path past the limekiln, down to Cunswick Hall and then sneakily continued along the ‘Private Road’ until we came back to the Crook Road. Interestingly we had presumed this ‘Private Road’ was fine to walk down and we had no issues, in fact we walked it twice in a couple of weeks with no problem. Unfortunately one of our teens went out for a socially distanced wander with friends (when they were allowed to) and got shouted at by a grumpy man at the farm so I’m guessing it’s not! I wonder if he would have shouted at us rather then a few teenagers minding their own business – I doubt it!!

We did a variation of this walk a couple of weeks later going in the opposite direction but dropping off Cunswick Scar down through Scar Woods and through Ash Spring before heading along Gamblesmire Lane and back up onto the Scar. The woods in springtime were just beautiful.

The Dovedale Round – Wainwrights, Birketts, Hewitts and Nuttalls (and lots of swearing!)

More recently I’ve shied away from doing any higher level walks due to health and worry about keeping up with other people (I’m a plodder!) So when a group of Home Ed friends said they were doing The Dovedale Round I wasn’t convinced. However, Teen 2 decided he wanted to give it a go, and being assured it wasn’t too steep, off we went.

Of course, if I’d been a bit more sensible, I would have checked the contour lines on the map beforehand but maybe that would have put me off completely!

We followed this route description (Walklakes – Dovedale Round) but did it backwards, so in theory we had the steepest part first and then a nice gentle wander along the ridge on the way back (yes, this was advised by the same person who said it wasn’t too steep!) The route takes in High Hartsop Dodd, Little Hart Crag, Dove Crag, Hart Crag, Hartsop Above How, Gale Crag and a few other lumps and bumps – 5 Wainwrights, 6 Birketts, 3 Hewitts and 3 Nuttalls…phew, no wonder it was tough!

The younger and fitter ones in the group seemed to have boundless energy and made it look easy while I had resorted to counting 40 steps, stopping, 40 steps, stopping (my strategy for coping with tough hills!) There were a few choice words along the way muttered descreetly to myself. The really steep descent on a loose stone path at the end was almost my breaking point – but WE DID IT!

The sun had shone all day, not a drop of rain, just a cold wind on the tops so almost perfect walking weather. The views were absolutely amazing and getting up high was fantastic, even through all the pain! After all the moaning and groaning, I’m really glad we did it, just goes to show how much more our bodies are capable of than we think they are. Teen 2 was a star, always checking back with me to make sure I was ok, making sure I knew about loose rocks and wet slippery bits.. proud mum moments!