Strenuous Leaders: Donna Callaghan & Terry Parry Distance: approx. 10.3 miles
Terrain – Tracks, fields, a short part on road, gates and a few stiles. It could be wet under foot.
We start our walk in Garstang car park (20p toilets available). From here we follow ‘The Millennium Walk’, and the River Wyre. We continue on across the railway and M6 (via bridges!) and then on to Long Crossey Wood, then through Grize Dale Valley and Holme Wood. Before lunch we shall hopefully (weather permitting) take in the splendid views over Lancashire’s Coastal Plain, Morecambe Bay at the top of Nicky Nook, at a modest height of 705ft. Next we go down to Fell End Farm, Calder Side, Moor House, then down a steep (walking sticks recommended) footpath into the woods, to meet the footpath and road back into Scorton. Plenty of wildlife and flying chickens for Rob to spot.
Moderate/leisurely Leader: Peter Denton Distance : 6.5 miles
This is a walk that has the leisurely walkers at its heart. It’s as flat as it is possible to make a walk. We head out of the village and under the motorway heading to Pedder’s Wood then up Grize Dale to Grizedale Reservoir as we walk around Nicky Nook towards Potter’s Hill, to Wyresdale Lake and Park, then back to Scorton for scones and tea. This is a lovely walk.
Easy Leaders: Derek Lee & Jackie Gudgeon Distance : 5.0 miles
Today’s walk is a circle around Nicky Nook. There is a climb out of Scorton on Tithe Barn Lane before a mostly gentler ascent on the Bridleway eastwards up Grize Dale as far as Grizedale Reservoir. Here we turn north for a while, passing the highest point of the walk, 350 feet higher than Scorton. We then take a westward turn through Potter’s Hill Wood to Sands Bottom where we turn southwards to pass Wyresdale Lake and join Snowhill Lane back to the village.
Notes On The Area
This pretty village, which is to the south east of Lancaster, is noted for its fine buildings, and protected as a conservation area. It is just on the edge of Bowland, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The area is popular for walkers and cyclists. There is also fishing at Wyreside Lake and Cleverley Mere.
The village first developed around a cotton mill in the 1700’s, and the railway, although records go back to the 1500’s. The mill is now derelict.
The Priory, near the centre of the village, is a hotel, restaurant, pub and village store.
Grize Dale is covered in ancient semi-natural woodland. Birch, beech, sycamore and European larch cover the slopes, while alder and ash are found along the banks of Grizedale Brook. The woodland is carpeted with bluebells in springtime, and has numerous mosses and liverworts. An easy to follow bridle path runs the full length of the valley. At the head of the valley is Grizedale Reservoir created in 1866 to provide drinking water for the Fylde and the reservoir is one of four managed by North West Water on the edge of the Bowland Estate. The reservoir and associated woodlands are rich in wildlife with birds such as Oystercatcher, Green Woodpecker, Redstart, Pied Flycatcher, and Wood Warbler breeding locally.
At a height of 215 metres ‘Nicky Nook’ is one of the most popular and well known landmarks in Wyre. Heather, bilberry, lichens, mosses, rushes, bracken and rough grass make up this rich mosaic of upland heathland. Skylark, Curlew, Kestrels and Lapwings are some of the birds to be seen.
For the day visitor there is a Bikes and Barrows Festival, and a steam fair.