Feeling cooped up after another miserable weekend and a foul dose of laryngitis/sinusitis. Even today started badly but by lunchtime there was a glimpse of brightness so a dose of fresh air was deemed essential.
I needed some vegetables and flour. My nearest shop is only just round the corner but to make the trip more beneficial I incorporated a six-mile walk to get there. Still aware of the dire state of the field paths I needed to stay on the tarmac. Normally any walk I set off on I try to avoid roads wherever possible – but needs must. I’m lucky that the local lanes are relatively quiet and give good views of the nearby fells within a hundred yards of my house.
The road I am walking lies between the Bowland hills of Fairsnape to the north and Longridge Fell to the south.
Fortunately, there are many small lanes and tracks leading up to a series of farms at the base of Longridge Fell. You can see from the OS maps that they all lie along the 150m contour line, well above the present road, and I suspect this must be the spring water line.
The views improve as you rise onto the fell and today the sun shone adding improved the lighting to the fells. As you can see from the tree there was a stiff wind blowing, but in Longridge this always means that any showers soon blow through. It was that sort of a day, sunshine, black clouds scurrying across the valley and the odd drop of rain – quiet uplifting really. Once up onto the fell it is an easy downhill stroll into the small town of Longridge. This place has been known in the past for its cotton mills, its stone quarries and local reservoirs supplying the Preston plain.
The reservoirs are still there and provide a habitat for waterfowl which are easily accessed and viewable. Ducks, coots, water hen and grebes are a common sight. The stone quarries of Longridge were famous for the quality of their gritstone and used in many Victorian enterprises in the north-west. Many have been filled in or adapted for other uses such as the caravan site passed on today’s walk.
No chance of climbing in here anymore! Did some routes here when I first moved to Longridge in the Seventies. But all is not lost as at Greenbank Quarry, the home of Craig Y Longridge, the BMC has funded the purchase of this site to preserve the nationally famous climbing. Even today, in not the best of conditions, there was some brave soul battling with the overhanging traverse.
When the weather improves I’ll give an impression of a bouldering session at Craig Y. It seems that since I started to post that for one reason or the other I’ve not really done much climbing in Bowland!! Hopefully, this will be redeemed before long. In the meantime I feel a foreign trekking trip coming on, just to boost up my Vitamin D levels for the winter.
A gentle walk down the main street, Berry Lane, window shopping, brought me to my destination –
– other brands are available in Longridge.