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Walking around Arnside

November 29, 2013

There are some places that are not quite land and not quite water, but a strange mixture of the two. Such is the estuary of the River Kent, where its waters pour out into Morecambe Bay. Though if the tide is right out as it was the other day there seems to be just sand and little water at all.Arnside 007

We walked from the National Trust car park at Arnside, down through the woodlands of Arnside Park to the estuary at New Banks. Then we took to the sands. This should only be done at low tide or when the tide is on the retreat. Even then you need to stay close to the shoreline of low cliffs as there are considerable quicksands further out into the estuary.Arnside 022

The conditions were just right for us. The waters of river and sea were miles out. A solitary heron walked the sands.

We walked around Blackstone Point. There was scarce a view of any water, the tide was so far out. Just endless miles of beach. On the opposite side of the estuary was the little Victorian resort of Grange-Over-Sands. Further out across the great sweep of Morecambe Bay, deadly to cross without the aid of the Queen’s Guide Cedric Robinson – don’t ever try it on your own, you will probably die – were the twin towers of the Heysham nuclear power station.Arnside 014

We were positively glowing as we clambered up on to the cliffs, and then followed a clifftop path around the woodlands of Arnside Park to Far Arnside.

From the caravan park there we headed inland back to Arnside Knott. On the way we diverted to see Arnside Tower, a substantial but ruined late Pele Tower, once a defence against invading Scots. A very impressive reminder of a time of bitter disputes. Arnside 027

Then back through woodlands, with many a yew tree, back to our starting point, having walked through one of the strangest of English landscapes.Arnside 036

This is worth doing, but please do bear in mind the warnings Arnside 032above about tides and quicksands.

A day or two after doing the walk we notices that “Walk” magazine has a similar ramble, though it omits Arnside Tower. Worth looking at if you are new to the area.Arnside 045

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. keithbadger permalink
    November 29, 2013 9:25 am

    Almost looks like another world!

  2. November 30, 2013 7:41 pm

    My favourite walk around there is to go from Arnside up to Storth and then up to the Fairy Steps and then back down past the pele tower to Arnside. Lovely place – my parents’ favourite – I wouldn’t mind moving to there when I retire…

    Whenever I see Heysham Power Station (and it’s visible from so far away like Sellafield) I wonder why people hate wind turbines so much – there’s no eyesore like a nuclear power station!

  3. December 1, 2013 8:01 am

    I don’t think multinational companies should be allowed to construct for vast profits any form of power generation that wrecks iconic British landscapes.

  4. December 3, 2013 2:53 am

    I think the problem there turns out to be though, that everyone thinks their own landscape is ‘iconic’ in some way. That seems to be the case wherever the public meetings take place about such things.

  5. December 3, 2013 7:58 am

    The other point is that there is no sense in generating power anywhere far away from potential consumers. A great deal of generated electricity is lost in transmission as it is transported from power stations to consumers. The modern generators are spectacularly inefficient. Turbines for example average one working day in three. They can’t work if there isn’t wind and they have to be switched off if there is too much wind. Bill-payers pay a subsidy every time they are switched off and switched on. Nor do they replace conventional power generation. Conventional power stations have to be kept up and running anyway ready to take over at the drop of the wind.
    Far better to spend the money on tidal and wave projects, small scale hydro, and energy conservation. Anything else is green tokenism, designed for the profits of multinational foreign owned energy companies rather than the saving of the planet.

  6. December 4, 2013 9:48 am

    Love the photos. Enjoying your Trespassing book. Ann

  7. December 4, 2013 10:37 am

    Many thanks!

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