DATE                                          28.04.11

DISTANCE                                 ABOUT 11.5 MILES

WEATHER                                 HOT AND SUNNY

START / FINISH                        OLD SCHOOL HOUSE AT BARROWBURN

Yomping Yarnspath Law

I have been neglecting my favourite set of hills for the last couple of months and been heading off to different places , well today that all changed , as anyone who knows me will tell you for the last 6 years I have been looking for something that was important to me , the only problem was I couldn’t remember what it was , or even where it was , that changed over the years by me having the odd flash back , I knew “it” was in or near Kidland forest so for the last few years I have spent a ridicules amount of time wandering around in and around Kidlandlee forest . However that all changed about a week ago when I was up Cross fell and had a massive memory recall, so now I knew what it was all about

 Time to do something about it & put that chapter of my life well and truly behind me.

There was only one way that I could hope to achieve   this and that was to go there and generally mooching about a bit.

The Route, I decided that I would start at my favourite start place Barrowburn head up Lounges Knowe cut down to Fairhaugh and join a forestry track, this track lead me to Nettlehope hill and from there to Mid Hill, it was from this point that I went off making it up as I went along, there is a footpath at this point that leaves the forest, by looking at it I would have a guess and say it hasn’t been used in years, however it suited my propose and fighting my way through the long tussocks I managed to leave Kidlandlee , now I was on the slopes of Yarnspath Law , what a unwelcoming hill this , its very badly overgrown with both tussocks , bogs and overgrown heather making it a nightmare to walk on , there is no path up here , not even  the odd sheep trail , in fact it is totally unmanaged as far as I could see , normally I would avoid areas like this like the plague but today I was on a mission . I struggled to get to the summit, there is no cairn or pile of rocks anything, and in fact it was only by checking my GPS that I knew I was there. I had a mooch around and made my way towards Bloody bush Edge in a rather wonky route , picking my way as the overgrown heather allowed me  looking back on the route it seemed that I was zinging and zagging  however its what I have to do in these sort of places , the terrain got a lot easer as I got onto the slopes of Bloody bush , again I didn’t go on the marked footpath (even if one existed) but made my own way up to the trig point , remember I was following a route that I think I did 6 long years ago , all the time looking for something . Just before the trig point I finally archived what I wanted to do and felt that I could call it a day on that particular chapter of my life and get on with things, first of all time to get off these most unwelcoming hills  I decided to retrace my steps and pick up the footpath that leads  all the way down to Uswayford , at this point I followed the fence line down where at least there was some sort of path , crossing over the fence I at last left the overgrown heather and entered onto rough pastures where the sheep keep every thing in check , much better for me to walk on , from this point onwards I felt incredibly at peace with myself and the surrounding s  . my path took me down to the farm across the Usway burn along a farm track till I joined the border cycle track (I have yet to see a bike up here) back to the farm and tea room at barrow burn .

All in all about 11 ½ miles some of it the worst terrain that mother nature could throw at me, but somehow I feel incredibly fortunate and privileged to have walked it. Once again the weather couldn’t have been better nice sunny day with a cool breeze just enough to stop me from getting to hot and strong enough to keep the fly’s and midges at bay.

It goes without saying I stopped of at the tea room and treated myself to a pot of tea and a fruit and cream scone (well deserved I thought) and very nice it was too.

I know that there are still huge holes in my memories but at least I won’t wake up feeling desperately frustrated and angry about something I can’t remember about, it’s been a huge relief to finally close that particular event. I wonder what the next one will be.

Sorry this is a walk ,i had  better get on and post some photos of the route …………..Enjoy I know I did.

 First one looking towards the camping hut at Barrowburn

Cross the Usway burn at Barrowburn, this view is always one of my favourites I always stop look at the way ahead and for some strange reason feel very lucky to be here with a whole days walking ahead of me.

Starting to head up Lounges Knowe

Looking back down to where I started

Looking across to where I will be a bit later (Kidlandlee)

Crossing over the Usway burn at Fairhaugh

Still heading up towards Nettlehope hill

On the forest track heading toward mid hill

Looking down towards west burn (if anyone is interested there is a “camping barn / house down there Whiteburnshank) lovely views eh.

Leaving Kidlandlee now

Looking up to Yarnspath Law

Looking toward where the summit is, it’s very hard going this, the grass and heather is so overgrown that you sink through it to mid thigh in places

On what I believe is the top now looking towards Bloodybush Edge.

Still struggling through

Looking at what I believe is the Shivering stone (fancy name for a rock I thought)

On my way back down now on rough pasture which is a lot better to walk on.

Heading down toward Usway farm following Bills sike

Finger post, that means that I am not lost

Still heading down, I can see my route on the other side of the valley

Heading toward the farm still (a bit of rough ground to get across first)

Usway burn (this is the third time I have crossed this burn)

Small waterfall

Nice burn shot

My way back

Looking down at the burn it looks like the rock has been washed out of the hill sometime during the winter

Looking towards the Middle (not my route back today)

On the slopes of barrow Law looking back

The path back

Looking across to the very edge of Kidlandlee and a distant Yarnspath Law

Looking down towards Barrowburn in the Coquet valley

Halfway down looking up the valley

After a well deserved refreshment break its back to the car last look back.

yet again another good days walking

NORTHUMBERLAND