DATE                                  22.09.12

DISTANCE                         13.5 MILES

WEATHER                         BRIGHT AND SUNNY

START / FINNISH             ROADSIDE PARKING AT HARTSIDE

BLOODYBUSH EDGE

Today was the big one, I had been pussy footing around nursing my knee for some time now and today I decided it was time to give it a real proper test. My other (arty) leg had been on its best behaviour so things where looking good.

I had a rough route sorted out in my head it entailed a return to Cushat Law but this time from the Ingram valley side something I had never done before. I would park up at the small farm at Hartside follow the small road to the farm at Alnhammoor then hopefully link up to a footpath that would take me over to the top of little Dodd where I would briefly link up with Salters road, now comes the tricky part I intended to stay on Salters road only until I could see a way up onto Bush Knowe, hopefully a farmers quad bike track or at least a sheep trail heading in the right direction , the terrain isnít that bad lower down but soon goes from rough grazing to unmanaged heather moorland as you climb higher and I need some sort of path (however small) to swing my arty leg , as luck would have it I happened to spot one , right where you would expect one to be and even with my poor eye sight I could see that was heading in the right direction all the way to the top , where I knew the terrain changed back from heather moorland to rough grazing again .

The going wasnít that hard but did involve a bit of zigging and zagging as I encountered a couple of wet boggy places and a couple of peat sikes but nothing to get concerned about. Then to my joy I came to the summit and there was the stone shelter at Cushat Law (615 meters) which meant a nice sit down.

Once again I had got lucky with the weather bright and sunny with a cooling breeze and was treated to some fantastic views all the way to the coastline and as far as the eye could see in the other direction.

Now it was time to have a think about ďwhere to nextĒ? I decided to pay Bloody Bush Edge (610 meters) a visit perhaps not one of my better moments but what the hell ÖÖÖÖI was out for a full days walking and thatís what I wanted to do , I had almost  forgotten what a boggy mess this area is (or used to be ) but I reasoned if I stuck close to the fence line things would be ok , the path is something you cant miss anything from 4 meters to 40 meters wide , wet , boggy , full of brown deep puddles with loads of tyre tracks all going from side to side . in several places where small water run offs  meet itís a bit of a mess , no matter how much crossing backwards and forwards you do itís hard not to get a boot full of mankey water , there are several places where it gets that bad it pays to cross over the fence and make you way in the heather . But as normal the more difficult it was the more I started to enjoy it, and finally after a long slow slog I finally made it to the trig point of a very wet Bloody Bush Edge. There is an old wooden sleeper by the trig point which enables you to have a sit down without getting your arse wet , again at this point I had to make a choice I decided to follow a different fence line down to Salters road and join up with it as it leaves the forest . This of course meant more bog hopping down the hill, and even now I canít understand why I didnít slip over, I mean I slipped so many times in so many different positions but each time I stayed upright, one slip involved a 10 meter long skid before I came to a stop but still managed to stay upright. Someone was looking after me!! And eventually a very tiered me staggered onto the Salters road (track) for a very well deserved sit down and rest. I will freely admit to being knackered now but a good drink, a rummage around in the rucksack for some tasty cake and a ten minute cat nap in the sun soon had my energy levels recharged.

Feeling refreshed its time to start heading back, all the way on salters road which for the most part is very easy walking, a few years ago all the bad sections where worked on using some soil processing method or something this is where the path was dug up mixed with a % stone and relayed which now makes for excellent walking and biking for that matter, of course there are still huge sections where the road becomes grassy and boggy but on the whole its easy walking. Following Salters road back it took me over Nagshead Knowe and then down to the river Breamish, this is a lovely valley to walk along with High Cantle, High Bleakhope, and low Cantle on one side of you and the ridge line of Cushat law / Bloody Bush edge on the other side accompanied by the pleasant sounds of the river, Salters road changes from a dirt track into a metallic road towards the end of this valley as you approach a small farm , at this point I am feeling knackered and decide to take the easy route back to the car , the road and salters road part and go there different ways at Low Bleakhope , salters Road goes straight on where as the metallic road goes round Shill moor following the river , Iím going to stick to the metallic road , there is no traffic to be concerned about as its only an access road for  two farms. But even on this road the views are something not to be missed and eventually it would take me all the way back to Hartside where my car is, or most importantly where the jet boil and coffee is kept. And as anyone who knows me will tell you I must have a cup of coffee when I get back to the car, a good and proper way to finish a walk.

Total distance walked today was 13.5 miles with 2525 ft of ups and downs so not to shabby at all but walking from Cushat law to Bloody bush Edge is hard going for me.

A few photos:-

 Taken from the car looking towards the route that I would be following towards and a distant Hogdon Law.

Crossing over the river Breamish looking back towards a distant Dunmoor Hill.

Looking up along the Shank burn.

Now on Salters road very easy walking for a while.

Looking up towards Bush Know and a distant Cushart Law looking for some sort of path to follow.

Heading up on Bush Know looking down toward the farm at high Bleakhope.

Time for a stop and a breather a few photos whilst my lungs start to work again.

Then suddenly the stone cairn on Cushart law is in sight.

A few photos from the top.

Looking across to a distant Hedgehope.

Looking towards the coastline.

On max zoom.

The path down to a section of Kidland forest (not my route today)

Last look back at the stone cairn.

My route following the fence line. Down cushat Law then upto Bloodybush edge , its not to bad at this point.

On the lower slopes of Bloodybush Edge looking back towards Cushat Law . its very wet and boggy hard work walking this section .

But the distant views make it all work while.

Then suddenly you made it time to cross over (again) I have had to cross over the fence several times on my way up here.

Trig point. what you cant see is how wet it is up here.

A old wooden sleeper , the only dry spot where you can sit down for a well deserved break.

My route down towards Salters road , its just as wet and boggy on this section.

Part way down.

 

Looking back up.

Made it to Salters road, its been a long knackering few miles.

Salters road (track) is now a restricted by way . the downside is there are a few gates to open and close.

Having a well deserved sit down and food break , old arty leg want his photo taken with Bloodybush Edge in the background.

My route back along Salters road , not all of this path is made up of stone track there are still miles of natural grass .

Not sure what I am looking at here but its typical of the views around here.

Heading down towards Nagshead Knowe.

Nearly at the bottom now.

Ainsey burn.

Crossing point , not a problem today as there hasnt been much rain.

Still on Salters road as I head into the valley.

Looking back .

Crossing over a very young river Breamish.

Again looking back.

Looking towards Cat Cleugh.

Looking along the valley towards the farm at Low Bleakhope.

Looking back down the valley towards the farm at High Bleakhope.

Looking up at High Cantle.

My route now takes me along the small road following the river Breamish. a few photos taken along the way.

Looking back.

Looking towards Hedgehope.

Looking down towards Lindhope. only a couple of miles to go.

I dont make recomendations but (just this once) I would like to say if anyone really really wants to go to Bloodybush Edge wait until the ground is frozen it would make it so much easer . thank you.

Day after thoughts.

Once again my routine of home, gear sorted and shower straight away seems to work, I had an early(ish) night and much to my surprise I didnít ache in the morning, arty leg was fine but where I got a boot full of mangy water the foot shell was full of stinking sludge that took a day or so to dry out and will stay like that till the next time I go to the limb centre. My stump was a bit red but again nothing to worry about ÖÖso I am marking this one up as a big success thank you.

NORTHUMBERLAND