Takin’ it Easy   14 comments

Early summer has become a time of added pressure for the family over the past couple of years and will continue for a few years yet. As the junior members face up to GCSE’s and A-Levels, May and June are a time of revision and exams. TJS is now mid-A-Level and when he’s off to University the cycle begins again for TJF. The May Spring Bank Holiday was always a main holiday for us but for now we have to be content with weekend breaks that while a good chance to get away normally involve camping and all the hassle that goes with it.

We are therefore lucky indeed to have my good friend Mark, his better half and their kids who invited us up to stay for the weekend. As always it was superb time of walks, play, good fun and laughs aplenty. Just the ticket to break up the school pressures and for me, personally to wind down and just enjoy simpler pleasures

The weather seemed set fair but alas the glorious drive up in broad sunshine on the Friday was a farewell wave (or two fingers up, take your pick) from our fickle British summer.

Saturday was hot and humid and with a forecast of heavy thundery showers on the way. Time to take advantage of the joy of Silverdale with one of its many fine short walks.


We went down to the cove where some sat and enjoyed the last of the warm sun, while me and the DBs explored the smelly beach caves




From there we went across the Lots, a lovely open meadow overlooking Morecambe Bay and one of my favourite spots in these parts. We missed the best of the Orchids that flower here so compensated with a windy game of frisbee



Alas the weather intervened and stopped outdoor play. A succession of heavy thunderstorms and its accompanying electric light show filled the rest of the day.

Sunday looked much better and we had a plan. A walk with a pub for lunch was in order. We had designs on a couple of spots but, rather unsurprisingly, most were fully booked with it being a Sunday on a BH weekend.

No matter, we had a resrve plan that included Garden Centres, cafes and a supermarket as a fail safe. Mark had a walk planned that ticked numerous boxes. After a visit to the Mill at Beetham (and an unsuccessful visit to the Garden Centre Cafe – packed out) we headed to Milnthorpe via Dallam Deer Park



I like Deer Parks, something about their manicured pastures and woodland, here with some views to the Peaks of the Yorkshire Dales



And of course Deer, although a little reticent and distant (the specks under the trees in the middle distance)



Lunch was now becoming a matter of priority. We came across the Bulls Head in Milnthorpe. It wasn’t much to look at either inside or out, all flashing fruit machines and pool tables. We were assured the food was good so gave it a go. What a find, the menu was extensive, the food excellent and staff friendly and capable, coping well with a party of nine arriving mid afternoon expecting top fed unannounced. The prices were reasonable and we all left with happy burps and distended stomachs. Time to work off some of that acquired fat

We walked back through the edge of the deer park along the river Bela. It was exceedingly fine and under a warm sun the walk was a delight




The river broadens and the path follows it out across the floodplain to where it joins the Kent





Time for more contrasts as we headed back inland with a short climb up Haverbrack.


The views across the Kent estuary to the distant Lake District fells was grand

IMG_2737 IMG_2738

Even the butterflies looked happy


Fairy steps was next on the tick list. A narrow passage with some old nonsense about fairies coming and giving you a blessing or doing the ironing for you or some-such if you manage to climb up without touching the sides. Here is Mark having a valiant attempt


The kids making it look easy


TBF seeming to enjoy the challenge




After a pause on the top it was back down through the woods to the car, crossing this magnificent spread of buttercups on the way


A fine walk and not an unsubstantial 6 miles in the end (a long way with a gang of restless kids I can tell you)

Fairy Steps

Mark had suggested we could walk back to the house and collect the car later. Seemed like a good idea in principle but when we reached the car the moment had gone. A much better idea was a late evening walk to the Pepper Pot.

On the way Mark showed us a Woodpecker nest he’d watched the previous week. We were sure the chicks would have flown by now but after a couple minutes one of the youngsters popped his head out and started squawking to be fed – boy are Woodpecker chicks noisy. We could hear the parents in the distance but they never appeared, clearly waiting for us to move before they returned


As always the view from the top was superb and we sat watching the light fade in peace and quiet before returning in near darkness through the woods. A quite excellent day


Monday was a washout but only in weather terms. Heavy rain kept us indoors but spirits were high as we filled the day playing a variety of board games of which the Silverdale gang have many. It was in its own way as fine a day as the previous one and it was with a heavy heart that we ate heartily again and bid our hosts farewell

A top notch weekend and as always a huge message of thanks to Mark and the family for putting us up and feeding us like kings and queens. We are an active family, a little too absorbed with doing stuff every minute of every day of holiday for our own good. Sometimes I forget that there is as much pleasure from timeless easy-paced wanders, games, play and just great company. I sometimes return from a holiday fulfilled yet needing a break to recover. A weekend in Silverdale sees me return fulfilled and relaxed in equal measure and isn’t that what a holiday should be


14 responses to “Takin’ it Easy

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  1. An excellent weekend, you are, of course, more than welcome. You can bring better weather with you next year! Actually, we didn’t do that badly – I enjoyed the thunderstorms and even the Monday was good fun, despite the rain. The music for the slideshow was a good choice – suitably laid back.


    • It was a great weekend. It never seems to matter what the weather does as we always seem to get a break and there is always a walk on the doorstep to take advantage, even if I don’t remember doing so! I had a great time on the Monday as well and it was a surprise that TJF enjoyed the games so much (and was pretty good as well). An excuse to get the kids down from the rooms in the winter or when the weather is bad


  2. Always great to get away for a long holiday weekend. You have such lovely green countryside! And nice photo of the butterfly.


  3. I have to admit that I’ve always liked these huge deer parks with their manicured grounds and carefully positioned trees! 😀 As a youngster, with horses, places like Tatton Park used to be absolutely wonderful to gallop around!


    • We have a deer park just up the road from where we live but it’s private and only open a couple of times a year. I really should find out when and pay a visit. Do you ride much these days if ever (assume not as I’ve never seen it on your blog).


      • No, I don’t. I grew up with horses and used to compete regularly too, but sold my last couple when I was in my mid twenties. It was a big decision/wrench at the time, and I still have the occasional bad dream about it.


        • Must have been tough to give something like that up, not only the joy of riding but the friendship you must have developed with the horses themselves. I’ve always thought “horse-packing” would be a fine way to explore the mountains with an equine companion

          Liked by 1 person

  4. Yep, as a kid I used to day dream about horse packing through The Rockies….


  5. A lovely write up, splendid stuff, wonderful photos.


    Brenda-Dawn Linney
  6. Really enjoyed that Andy as that’s my kind of walk. Loads of variety on it and plenty of shelter to avoid heavy summer showers. It’s been that way weather wise up here as well with lower level walks the best option the last few weeks. Rained five days out of every seven here the last month or so..


    Blue Sky Scotland
    • The walks round this area for perfect for easy strolling with long and short options, hills, coasts and interesting stuff like the Fairy Steps. Heatwave down here at the moment so walking is off the cards for now


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