A beautiful summer’s evening drew us to this spot for the third time for our traditional mid-summer’s evening walk. It used to feature Coniston Old Man, but old age and infirmity has seen us slump in recent years to lower heights. Having said that, it’s five years since we last enjoyed this route.
Sue and I left home in plenty of time to reach the turn off shortly after Levens before 7pm. We enjoyed a luxurious picnic as a squad of mountain bikers arrived, donned what can only really be described as suits of armour, then set off gently down the road.
As is normal this summer, we enjoyed an exclusive evening stroll, starting at Raven’s Lodge, from where the Lyth Valley was bathed in sunshine from the cool shade of our tree-lined path.
At Rawsons, we were spied upon eerily from a dark building.
These woods always seem to be bustling with activity at this time of day. We watched a young badger rummaging in the undergrowth, whilst a woodpecker tapped furiously in a tree high above us.
It’s an excellent time of year for wild flowers, and we spotted what we think is an Early Marsh Orchid, flourishing in the damp ground.
After quite a while spent on pleasantly shady woodland paths on a warm evening, we emerged eventually onto sunlit Whitbarrow Scar, to see the posse of mountain bikers pass along our near horizon on their way to Lord’s Seat (all of which appear as small dots on the horizon below).
We don’t have any problem with these bikers, even if there may not be a legitimate bridleway across here. There was nobody else around, the ground was firm, and there was no evidence at all of their passage.
They had moved on by the time Sue and I reached Lord’s Seat, where there’s a faded plaque in honour of Canon GAK Hervey (1893-1967), founder of the Lake District Naturalists Trust (this link is the closest I could get to what the Trust has now evolved into – but further research may reveal more). There are stunning views across lakeland from here, with the Coniston hills prominent and the Langdales just a bit more distant.
Our traverse of the Scar continued amiably over the crusty limestone pavement, with views to nearby Arnside, fronted by its long railway viaduct and the Kent Estuary.
The sun was slowly dropping behind the mountain horizon, and we lingered at the cairn at 198 metres to appreciate the view.
Then it was a pleasant descent over limestone then through woodland to the huge bedding plane of the old quarry floor at White Scar. We always think this would be a fine venue for an outdoor concert, but the local wildlife may disagree.
The walk is about 9 km, with 300 metres of ascent, and takes about 2.5 hours. An excellent summer’s evening or afternoon (or even morning) stroll.
Some route details for this fine outing, prepared several years ago, are here.