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Ward's Stone from Stoops Bridge

Forest of Bowland Walk

Region - Forest of Bowland

County/Area - Lancashire

Author - Lou Johnson

Length - 13.0 miles / 21.1 km    Ascent - 1630 feet / 494 metres

Time - 8 hours 10 minutes    Grade - mod/hard

Maps Ordnance Survey Logo Anquet Maps Logo

Ordnance Survey Explorer OL41Sheet Map1:25kBUY
Anquet OS Explorer OL41Digital Map1:25kBUY

Walk Route Description

Photo from the walk - Ward's Stone from Stoops Bridge
Click image to see photo description.

This walk to Ward's Stone, in the Forest of Bowland, takes you to the highest point in Lancashire (560 metres). The lengthy route combines a cultivated valley with moorland, and despite the length of the walk is never too strenuous. The walk should be avoided in low cloud as the moorland section has few landmarks and can be confusing. After heavy rain some of the moorland paths maybe wet underfoot.

The start is the small car park adjacent to Stoops Bridge near Abbeystead Reservoir (grid ref. SD5635440. After parking walk across the bridge and take the first footpath on the right. Cross the stone set stile and head north across fields. On reaching a road, turn left and continue generally uphill for just under two kilometres to reach the Jubilee Tower (grid ref. SD542573). Turn right into the car park and take the path adjacent to a fence. As you gain height you can enjoy improving views. At the third boundary post (grid ref. SD557589), turn right and make the short ascent onto Grit Fell.

Descend to the east and follow a concessionary path across the moor. Go straight across a track and start a gradual ascent to reach Ward's Stone and an OS trig column after two kilometres. The stone is not the highest point which is soon reached at a second trig column. Ahead you have a view of the Three Peaks Country in the Yorkshire Dales. Continue along the path to reach an angled fence by the Queen's Stone (grid ref. SD595587). Fork right here and keep the fence on your left. Continue to a wall. Bear right with the wall and continue on the grassy path soon passing two boulders (Grey Crag) on the other side of the wall. The wall becomes a fence for a while before a wall takes over again. A fence replaces the wall again at a stile. Continue to a ladder stile in the broad col, with Wolfhole Crag rising ahead.

Turn sharp right and follow the path to start the descent from the watershed. A good track soon appears, and this is followed across Tarnbrook Fell. At the intake wall, the track turns sharp right and continues to a road in Tarnbrook. Turn left (following the Wyre Way, initially a walled track, the path heads southwest across fields to Top of Emmetts where you follow their access drive to a road (grid ref. SD575547). Cross the road to a stile and continue across fields following the Wyre Way to reach Strait Lane. Turn left and head downhill to the start at Stoops Bridge.

Other walks nearby

Walk 1742 Grit Fell from the Jubilee Tower near Quernmoremoderate7.7 miles
Walk 2164 Clougha Pike from the Jubilee Towereasy/mod4.7 miles
Walk 3038 Wolfhole Crag from Tower Lodgemoderate9.0 miles
Walk 2257 Clougha Pike from Quernmoreeasy/mod4.8 miles
Walk 2137 Clougha & Goldsworthy's Installation Circularmoderate5.2 miles
Walk 1218 Fiensdale Head & Bleasdale Watermoderate10.0 miles
Walk 2594 Totridge Fell & Fiendsdale Head, Forest of Bowlandmoderate11.0 miles
Walk 1670 Hazelhurst Fell, Fair Snape Fell and Parlickmoderate11.0 miles
Walk 1994 Cockerham, Glasson & Conder Greeneasy/mod6.6 miles
Walk 3505 Whitewell via Crag Stones from Dunsop Bridgeeasy/mod8.5 miles

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