Monday 24th August 2020. Lowgill and River Hindburn. 6.5 miles.
This was my first walk with BC since the original lockdown.
BC has walked more long distance paths in the UK and abroad than anybody else I know of. I was surprised, amused, and a bit proud when I suggested this walk to BC when he told me had not walked here before.
This is quiet countryside. The River Hindburn runs through in a mostly wooded cleft with tributaries forming deepish wooded side valleys displaying a wide landscape of seriously undulating countryside. Our walk, according to BC's altimeter thingy involved over 1000 feet of ascent.
From the road at Lowgill convoluted footpaths took us to Tatham Church of the Good Shepherd. Although there has been a church here since 1577 the present one only dates from 1888 but its architecture is somewhat out of the ordinary; the door was locked so no inside visit. Unfortunately the church is not dedicated to some obscure saint with an interesting history, but Wiki reveals The Good Shepherd as a film about the CIA directed by Robert de Niro and also a novel by C.S. Forester.
A variety of paths followed switchback fields, steep descents into woods, several wooden bridges, entrancing river and streams and an ever changing scenery of the best of English countryside on a perfect summer's day.
We met a deaf and dumb elderly gent with a dog coming towards us. He was a jolly sort and asked us to direct him - he was using a dreadful little black and white sketch map that looked as though it had been torn from the pages of Country Walking. Following the complicated footpaths had been a challenge to us armed with Ordnance Survey and GPS. Our signing and the like seemed to achieve some success and he was very happily on his way. Further on a mother and young boy with a collie sheep dog were incoming, The dog appeared aggressive but as we chatted I had him tamed and enjoying a tickle behind the ears and then the throwing of a stick.
At Bottom Head Farm, our furthest south, we chatted at length with the friendly farmer on a variety of subjects including his summing up of his ability or otherwise to understand the various auctioneers at livestock markets that he has visited - "you can't tell which ten they are in, thirty or forty..."
We sat on the edge of a fast flowing stream for a late bite and coffee. The water in the streams is a rich brown ale colour but still crystal clear running and tumbling and foaming providing a tonic to the soul.
We eventually came back to tarmac and at Ivah Farm a lady and dog appeared over the wall of the farm and they turned out to be the same we had met earlier. As we chatted again who should come down the road from the other direction but the cheery deaf and dumb guy. We were not sure who was lapping who but it was all a pleasant and happy second encounter for all.
Another half kilometre and we were looking at a proud polished granite war memorial in Lowgill village. Considering its size and impressiveness, this was a proportionally large tribute to just the few names of the fallen in that area from both wars.
Some of the paths on this walk were well defined and obviously walked and many others just the opposite but it is a most attractive and unspoilt area - quite a discovery at less thanan hour's drive from home.
Worth clicking photos to enlarge
|Parked outside the closed school at Lowgill, ready for the off|
This and below
I don't think this old Austin car engine will be running again any time soon
|The start of one of several steep descents to magic streams and footbridges|
|A new breed of substantial cast footpath signs I have not seen before - we only saw one more much further on|
|Tatham Church of the Good Shepherd. No sign of Robert de Niro|
|Yet another view of Ingleborough but I couldn't resist this one|
|Bottom Head Farm nestling below the moorland. That was our furthest south. Pity the heather is not yet blooming on those wild moors. Views from around here were extensive and impressive in all directions on this glorious day|
|Lowgill war memorial|