In the last month, me and my lovely wife along with our silly pointer have driven out to various points along the Lancaster Canal for a run. First off we started from Tewitfield (read about it here) and then the following week we started from Holme (read about it here). Today we started from near the village of Stainton, as close as we could park to where we had reached the previous outing, and once again headed north.
Less than a mile into the run and we came to the Hincaster tunnel and horse path, opened in 1819. The boats would be hauled through by hand, as the plaque states, with the horses going over the top, which is what we did.
There was a neat little viewing platform that extended over the canal so that you could have a look all the way through the tunnel without climbing down onto the old canal bed.
There were also a couple of small tunnel like features for Nelly to rush through, avoiding any trolls that might lurk there.
It isn’t always easy to capture Nelly in full flight, as she runs like a crazy, but happy pointer. Not far after the tunnel we had to take a detour along a road, crossing the dual carriageway to Kendal, before rejoining the footpath. There is very little left of the canal this far north, with a few bridges standing in the middle of fields.
We continued past the beautiful village of Sedgwick and across more fields, some with very placid cows and others full of sheep. Having been chased by cows last year we are wary of them, especially as a man was killed by cows near Ingleton the other week.
Before long we had reached the outskirts of Kendal where we decided to turn around and head back, instead of running into the centre. Disaster almost struck as first Helen fell over, grazing her knee and straining her wrist, and then Nelly started to limp. They are both tough northern girls, so we pushed on at a nice gentle pace, walking past the cows before stopping to take a couple of photos at the other side of the Hincaster tunnel. As you can see the canal is very overgrown.
Back through the little tunnels and to the car, where Nelly could have a long drink. I was carrying plenty of water so during the run the three of us were OK but I had left extra in the car. Nine miles of running, slightly less than the previous time, but we were all feeling tired; it must have been all the styles we had to climb over, or the up-and-over section at the tunnel. Whatever, it was another great little run. As Helen said, she couldn’t believe that she would ever say nine miles was a ‘little’ run.
Driving back into Lancaster we were amazed at the length of the queue stretching along Caton Road for the McDonalds drive-thru. The easing of the lockdown means different things for different people. We weren’t tempted.
Once home we inspected the damage. Helen’s knee was a bit swollen and neither of us could see anything in Nelly’s paw. I’m sure that everyone will be absolutely fine by tomorrow morning.
Now that we have run the whole length of the disused section of the Lancaster Canal, what’s next? We might look at leaving a bicycle locked up at Tewitfield, driving to Kendal and then running all the way back to Tewitfield. There is a nice cafe at the Greenlands Farm Village where Helen and Nelly could rest while I cycled back to get the car. Alternatively, Helen could drop me off at Kendal and I could run all the way back to Lancaster (probably just over a marathon distance), meeting me at various points to make sure that I’m OK.