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Wainman's Pinnacle overlooking Cowling with Pendle Hill straight ahead on the horizon
Wainman's Pinnacle overlooking Cowling with Pendle Hill straight ahead on the horizon

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Route No. 659 - Thursday 9 March 2017
Buck Stone La, Coppy La, Greystones La, Pole Rd,
Lund's Tower, Wainman's Pinnacle circuit - 9km
Cowling, South Pennines . . .

Route map from Ordnance Survey Open Space service.

Map: OS Explorer OL21 South Pennines



Setting off along the moorland path from Buck Stone Lane opposite the car park

The path followed the wall across the moor
The path followed the wall across the moor

The gate took us on to a public footpath going across an area of open access land. The area is rough, very wet moorland. The path followed a wall a few metres on our left. There were several drainage channels at intervals crossing the path at right angles and after last week's rain and some overnight rain this week they were running full. We had a choice of wading across or a muddy detour in each case. After about 400m we came to another kissing gate in a stone wall.

This week we have had a spell of settled fine weather with clear blue skies, bright sunshine and a cool breeze. So this morning my friend, Jim, and I drove to a little parking area off Buck Stone Lane at map ref. SD 985 425. The parking area is about 300m south of Wainman's Pinnacle on Earl Crag overlooking Cowling, about 9km south of Skipton. From the parking area we crossed Buck Stone Lane to a kissing gate opposite.

A boggy patch at the kissing gate
A boggy patch at the kissing gate

The path following the wall towatds the Hitching Stone
The path following the wall towards the Hitching Stone

Turning left through the kissing gate in the wall
Turning left through the kissing gate in the wall

Path across the moor
Path across the moor

After about 600m we came to a stone step stile over a wall at map ref. SD 992 415. The first half of the path to this point is a bit hit and miss and a compass bearing is probably a good idea to stay on track. We had to keep north of a developing depressing in the moor which, by the time we reached the step stile, this depression had developed into a little valley with a small water course and much boggy land in the bottom.

Through the gate we continued along the path next to a wall, passing a padlocked field gate on our left. After about 250m we came to another kissing gate in the wall on our left. Ahead of us at the top of the rise was a huge boulder called the Hitching Stone. We turned left through the kissing gate and followed the route of a public footpath across the rough wet boggy moorland through heather and coarse grass.

The Hitching Stone
The Hitching Stone

Path above the boggy floor of the little valley on our right
Path above the boggy floor of the little valley on our right

Stone step stile as we made our way along the little valley
Stone step stile as we made our way along the little valley

Following the narrow path along the little valley
Following the narrow path along the little valley


Approaching the wall where we turned left


From our starting point at Buck Stone Lane to the road here, called Long Gate, we had walked about 1.8km across the open access moorland. I had found this hard going. Bog hopping is an energy sapping pastime with my old wonky knees and I was very glad to reach the road and some firm going for a while.

Over the step stile the path followed the path running along the side of the little valley above the watercourse. After about 600m the path brought us to a stone wall at map ref. SD 997 411. Here we turned left and followed the wall for about 350m to a road at map ref. SE 000 411.

Following the narrow path along the little valley
Following the narrow path along the little valley

Following the path by the wall across a boggy area
Following the path by the wall across a boggy area

Heading for the road along the path by the wall
Heading for the road along the path by the wall

Gate & stile on to the road called Long Gate
Gate & stile on to the road called Long Gate

Walking along Long Gate to the junction with Coppy Lane
Walking along Long Gate to the junction with Coppy Lane

Following Greystones Lane
Following Greystones Lane

Track over moorland to Pole Road
Track over moorland to Pole Road

We continued along Greystones Lane round Grey Stones Hill to a sharp right hand bend where the lane again changes its name this time to Todley Hall Road. At this bend we kept straight on following a walled track around the edge of a small area of open access land to Pole Road at map ref. SE 014 416.

At the road we turned right and walked along Long Gate for about 150m, then turned left to follow Coppy Lane down to a right hand bend in a small dip where the lane changed its name to Greystons Lane.

The bend where Coppy Lane becomes Greystone Lane
The bend where Coppy Lane becomes Greystones Lane

Turning off Greystones Lane along a track to Pole Road
Turning off Greystones Lane along a track to Pole Road

Track over moorland to Pole Road
Track over moorland to Pole Road

Turning left on to Pole Road from the track across some open access moorland
Turning left on to Pole Road from the track across some open access moorland

Following Pole Road towards Lund's Tower
Following Pole Road towards Lund's Tower

Passing Hill Top Farm along Pole Road
Passing Hill Top Farm along Pole Road

After about 2km we came to the crossroads with Buck Stone Lane. Here we kept straight on along the road towards Lund's Tower. We continued along the road around a left hand bend with Lund's Tower above us on our left.

At Pole Road we turned left and walked along the road in the bright sunshine. There was not much traffic at all, although the occasional car did pass a bit too quickly for my liking.

Passing High Pole Farm along Pole Road
Passing High Pole Farm along Pole Road

Nearing Lund's Tower along the road
Nearing Lund's Tower along the road

Turning left off the road to climb up to Lund's Tower
Turning left off the road to climb up to Lund's Tower

The path from the road up to Lund's Tower
The path from the road up to Lund's Tower

Doorway to the spiral staircase up Lund's Tower
Doorway to the spiral staircase up Lund's Tower

Just around the bend we turned left off the road and followed a public foot path up the hillside. We passed a few picnic tables with a lovely view but the picnic area was spoilt by an accumulation of litter. We climbed some steep steps to a path along the top of the escarpment that led us to the foot of Lund's Tower. There is a doorway into the tower where a narrow dark spiral staircase climbs to a viewing platform at the top of the tower. At the top of the spiral staircase there is a low stone slab and we had to duck under it to emerge on the viewing platform. There is Pendle Hill on the horizon to the west, the Yorkshire Three Peaks on the horizon to the north and Airedale to the north east at Cross Hills. We made our return to ground level down the rather precarious spiral staircase.

Approaching Lund's Tower
Approaching Lund's Tower

Looking out from the top of Lund's Tower
Looking out from the top of Lund's Tower

View north west from the top of Lund's Tower
View north west from the top of Lund's Tower

The path from Lund's Tower along the top of Earl Crag to Wainman's Pinnacle (the salt & pepper pots)
The path from Lund's Tower along the top of Earl Crag to Wainman's Pinnacle (the salt & pepper pots)

Looking back to Lund's Tower
Looking back to Lund's Tower

Nearing Wainman's Pinnacle
Nearing Wainman's Pinnacle

The origins of both monuments is unknown, but not free from speculation. We enjoyed the view from Wainman's Pinnacle and nearby we found a small pool full of frogs.

From the tower we followed the path along the top of Earl Crag for about 800m to Wainman's Pinnacle. Together Lund's Tower & Wainman's Pinnacle are known locally as the "salt & pepper pots".

Walking along the top of Earl Crag to Wainman's Pinnacle
Walking along the top of Earl Crag to Wainman's Pinnacle

Wainman's Pinnacle on top of Earl Crag
Wainman's Pinnacle on top of Earl Crag

View from Earl Crag as we walked from Lund's Tower towards Wainman's Pinnacle
View from Earl Crag as we walked from Lund's Tower towards Wainman's Pinnacle

Frogs gathering to mate
Frogs gathering to mate

The whole route had been just under 9km and it had taken me around three and a half hours to walk. Jim is very patient and keep waiting for me to catch up.

I counted around 40 frogs intent on their spring mating ritual in the sunshine. From Wainman's Pinnacle we followed the path back to the parking area at Buck Stone Lane and the end of our walk.

Frogs gathering to mate
Frogs gathering to mate

A few of the frogs we saw in a small moorland pool near Wainman's Pinnacle
A few of the frogs we saw in a small moorland pool near Wainman's Pinnacle

Looking back to Wainman's Pinnacle from the car park at the end of our walk
Looking back to Wainman's Pinnacle from the car park at the end of our walk

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