Saturday, June 26, 2010

Parlick and Fairsnape Fell Walk

Paraglider against blue sky with fluffy clouds

Armed with a surprise afternoon pass (thanks Maggie) I slipped on my old walking boots and headed for the hills.  Parlick and Fairsnape fells lie to the north west of the village of Chipping, and together with the adjacent Wolf, Blindhurst, Saddle and Home House fells form and extensive open access area.  Popular with walkers and birdwatchers, the area is also used by gliders, which adds to the spectacle.  The Ordnance Survey Explorer OL41 covers the area and names the places mentioned here.

Fell Foot approach to Parlick
Fell Foot approach to Parlick

Arriving via Chipping, I parked up on the lane leading to Fell Foot (there's a 'P' on the map) and headed up towards Parlick.  The approach is fairly steep - I took the left path at the first fork which gives a gentler ascent than the more direct alternative, and takes the walker around the west side of Parlick.

View over Fell Foot to Longridge Fell
View over Fell Foot to Longridge Fell
Once the initial climb is completed the walking on top of the fells is more undulating, criss-crossed with fences, walls and recognisable paths, so walking and navigation is pretty easy as long as the weather is good.  I skirted around the peak and then followed the wall between Blindurst and Wolf fells.

Old Wolf Fell Access Area Sign
Old Access Area Sign
I set my sights on a cairn on Parlick with a pole sticking out of it (marked as Paddy's Pole on the map) and followed a decent path towards it.  It took an hour of steady walking under hot sun from the car to Paddy's Pole.

Paddy's Pole
Paddy's Pole

Heading back the way I came, I picked up a fence heading up to the summit of Parlick.  A fixed-wing glider was joined by one, then two paragliders and the three of them circled the fell in what looked like a game of cat-and-mouse.

Glider circling Parlick
Glider circling Parlick

Paraglider and Fairsnape Fell
Paraglider and Fairsnape Fell

From Parlick to Beacon Fell
From Parlick to Beacon Fell

Descending steeply from the summit, I rejoined the path back to Fell Foot which was by now alive with chirping grasshoppers and birdsong - I snapped a Meadow Pipit in song, a common breeding bird in the area and favourite host of the scheming cuckoo.

Meadow Pipit
Meadow Pipit

Heading back to the car, the sense of being in another time I often feel in Bowland was heightened by the sight of an old Austin 7 left by another walker - a lovely way to end a two-hour wander.

Austin 7
Austin 7

2 comments:

  1. Hi Gareth,
    I was there on the same day! and took the same photos of the same things! See the Austin A7 here. http://roadmarkers.blogspot.com/2012/03/austin-7-at-parlick.html
    Love the blog - live in St Annes, Parlick is that big lump that I see every day, except when there is mist, fog and heavy rain. I also see it from work.... argh. Love the blog. I should say thanks for sharing! but I was there! I was the chap with the little Yorkshire Terrier. He was worried by the sheep. I will be following your blog. Thanks

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  2. The old Austin actually belongs to a paraglider pilot and can often be found on Fell Foot Lane.

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