Fungi on the fell.

One of my regular walks in winter is on the forest tracks of Longridge Fell.  This is what I had in mind for today – a mixture of sun and showers.There is parking at SD 664 396. As you enter the forest you will have to be careful to avoid the piles of dog shit on the first 200m of the forest track!

They must be bursting when let loose. No comment.

Mind the poo!

Today on the radio is news of a fungus attacking ash trees – Chalara die back disease. This  fungus is thought to have been brought into Britain on infected stock from Europe. My experience of ash is that it seeds everywhere so why couldn’t  we have used indigenous seedlings for our forests??  Too late as it is spreading through Britain.
So it is distressing to find at the start of today’s walk signs warning of Ramorum fungus affecting the larch trees in the forest.

Ramorum fungus

When I first came to live in Longridge in the 70’s the fell was only recently planted up with forestry. As you walk around now you can still see traces of the walls that divided the fell previously. Probably most of the fell was used for sheep grazing.

Old boundary wall.

There are lots of lovely tracks through the trees.

Longridge Fell track

Continuing on the walk you can arrive at the trig point of Longridge Fell  at 350m. From here there are views of Chipping Vale and beyond. Morecambe Bay, the Bowland Fells and the Three Peaks in Yorkshire. A track leads east into the woods  and several alternative routes bring you back to your starting point. It’s worth going to Sam’s View on the main track for his view. No idea who Sam was.

Sam’s view.

Continuing now one goes through an area of felled trees. In the past Tilhill forestry have been very conscious of maintaining the environment of the fell with small pockets of tree felling taking place. Now because of Phytophthera ramorum disease they have to fell large areas of trees to try and prevent the spreading of the disease. This has led to some unsightly looking areas on the fell.

Devastation

One hopes that this may be helpful but as the spores can be transmitted by the wind I have my doubts. The same applies to the ash problem. We didn’t solve the Dutch Elm disease problem! We just lost them.  I suspect that the larch and ash diseases are beyond our control now. Maybe better quarantine systems would have helped but if these fungi are airborne then there is very little we can do about it.

I’m not sure whether all the procedures to eliminate these fungi will have much affect. Will be interesting to return to the fell in 30yrs time, though I don’t think I’ll be around. In the long run nature will take it’s own course with me and the forest trees.

You can’t change the overall view from the Trig point, thank heavens!

What was that about wind turbines…….

Chipping Vale from Longridge Fell

 

    Just get out there and walk the local tracks.

3 thoughts on “Fungi on the fell.

  1. conrobin

    Looking at Longridge Fell on the map I can’t recall walking there, unless that was the destination when I visited you some time ago. I find it difficult to believe that I am not more familiar with LF having lived in Preston for twenty years or so. Perhaps you could show me round sometime before all the trees have gone?

    Reply
    1. bowlandclimber Post author

      At one time very few people used Longridge Fell for recreation and the paths were overgrown. As time has gone on the numbers have increased and with the advent of mountain biking it has become very popular. Erosion is now a feature of many of the paths particularly with a wet summer as this one.
      Yes we’ll have a trip round, not too much up and down whilst your knee is strengthening.

      Reply

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