After churning through pathless, cow trodden quagmire a few days ago on Hollow Stones I vowed that future walks would be restricted to public footpaths as shown on the OS map in consideration of my knee recovery.
Today, with the best intentions, I set off on a circuit of Wet Sleddale. From the cattle grid start I walked up the Tarmac road and continued on the footpath to the north of the access road to Green Farm and Sleddale Grange. It was a completely pathless, knee twisting reed and moss swamp demanding careful navigation to find access points at the various field boundaries. I emerged at Sleddale Grange and thankfully picked up the access road continuing to Sleddale Hall.
Sleddale Hall is famous because it featured in the film Withnail and I. I have visted before on several occasions. It seems that the buildings have been perhaps re-roofed and secured. As far as I could Google they are in private ownership and there seems to be no immediate plans for further refurbishment.
I descended to the stream where OS indicates the public footpath crosses. Here is a line of large boulders making for stepping stones, but with the final step at the other side missing. The stones were wet and green and projecting more than a foot above the fast flowing water and with not very flat surfaces. I had an immediate picture of me teetering from one to another then having an unpleasant fall into the stream which could have been more than serious. I opted for a Nick Crane and found a spot a bit higher up where the stream was not flowing so fast and just waded across at knee height. So much for my intentions of walking on benign footpaths.
|Victorian post box at the end of the public road leading on to Green Farm|
|Across to the A6 and the Tata limestone crushing plant and the northern Pennines in the distance|
|Wet Sleddale reservoir from near Sleddale Hall|
|I think this is the actual current owner of Sleddale Hall. That sign has been there for years.|
|I waded across avoiding almost certain catastrophe|