At the weekend I was out walking in the Trough of Bowland. Our objective was Paddy’s Pole on Fair Snape Fell. The area is one of the boggiest places in the country and the peat hags can rival those on Kinder Scout. We could be in for an adventure.
We parked in a layby close to Fell Foot farm about 2km NW of Chipping and walked up the lane to the farm and through the gate onto access land to begin the short but steep climb to the summit of Parlick.
I was finding it tough going and at one point I was overtaken by a guy carrying an enormous backpack. He was about to go paragliding and the pack weighing 20kg contained his sail, yet he still left me behind.
We were nearly at the top when suddenly the sky went dark. I thought it was another eclipse of the sun, but no, it was just a glider passing just over my head and landing nearby.
The summit of Parlick is only 432m (1418ft) in height but the views are impressive. On a clear day you can see the entire coastal plain of Lancashire, the central summits of the Pennines and the southern Lakeland Fells across Morecambe Bay.
At the summit there it a large cairn and shelter. Inside we found a green plastic container. It was an urn and had contained the ashes of someone who presumably wanted them scattered on the fell. Perhaps it was their favourite spot. What a wonderful final resting place.
From here we headed North following the line of the fence across Blindhurst Fell before turning West towards Paddy’s Pole.
Paddy’s Pole stands at 510m (1674ft) and has a large cairn complete with a pole, a shelter and a trig point, an ideal spot to take some photos.
We now changed direction to head ENE towards the true summit of Fair Snape Fell at 520m (1706ft). It was a beautiful day with a clear blue sky and after a relatively dry week the conditions were not as bad as I had expected. However we still had to pick our way round stagnant pools and drainage ditches with some slithery patches.
The next section heading NW towards Fiendsdale Head was probably the worst section with some pools that looked like bottomless pits.
We now began our descent on a good path heading SW down to the valley. The views were excellent and we could look across to the fells and the skyline along which we had walked earlier in the day.
It was now easy walking past a couple of farms to get back to our car. Back in Chipping we had time for tea and cake before our journey home.
Another marvellous day on the fells.
8 miles with 1538 feet of ascent.