Sunday, 15th March 2015

Walk: Crookdale, Borrow Beck, Bretherdale, Shap Wells Hotel
Start Point: Layby on A6- South of Shap Well Lodge Grid Reference: NY 566 090
Distance: 14 miles Ascent: 2,500 feet
Time: 6 hours
Weather: After a chilly start becoming milder but staying dry
Comments: After aborting his recce on two previous weekends due to bad weather, the leader was unsure what today would bring for the eight walkers who joined him on Birkbeck Fells Common. The usual suspects had turned up and we were joined by John from West Lancs LDWA. The first surprise of the day was that we just managed to get into what was a quiet layby which had been chosen by three Spanish car transporters as a place to spend the weekend ….obviously not locals! Shap is no Costa Brava……. . Time for the off as we headed south crossing Wasdale Old Bridge and around Packhorse Hill which returned us onto the A6. A short walk along the grass verge to admire the stone memorial to Transport Drivers, Road-builders and Local people who shared the memories of the crossing of Shap in the days before the M6. Our journey continued down into Crookdale following the farm road south until meeting with the A6 where we crossed and headed to the base of Ashstead Fell. We stopped briefly for a quick brew having reached the southern extremity of today’s walk. Onwards north crossing the Borrow Beck by way of the stepping stones and then the ascent over Borrowdale Edge following Breasthigh Road and down into Bretherdale. We continued north following the road and footpaths onto the east side of Birkbeck and on to the Shap Wells Hotel passing the Queen’s Monument which was erected in celebration of Queen Victoria’s ascension to the throne. The route back to the layby followed Wasdale Beck upstream and a short romp over the access land between the beck and the A6, where the Spanish drivers were making some vegetable soup … saving their euros for the trip home????

So much for a quiet parking place!!!!

Shap Pink Quarry in the distance

Memorial Stone

No summit cairns today so this will do

Crookdale Bridge

Some friendly local beasts

Bretherdale

Starting the ascent up Breasthigh Road

Stakely Beck

Crossing Trundle Beck?

Queen's Monument at Shap Wells

Afternoon Tea anyone?

Wasdale Beck - the way back

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