LET’S TAKE A RIDE…
An exceptionally varied short tour of Chipping and its environs
The route is a double loop so either or both circuits can be taken, with room for a pit-stop after the first lap.
1. Head out of the village on the Slaidburn road (eastbound) but turn left at the war memorial, signposted to Bowland Wild Boar Park.
2. At some stone pillars, look out for the concessionary bridleway shadowing the road on the left to add a smidgeon of interest. Where this ends, turn left over a cattle grid and up a farm road. Ignore a left turn into Leagram Hall Farm.
3. At Laund Farm bear left in front of the farmyard 100 yards later, turn right at a block for stacking milk churns. A fingerpost here says Park Gate 700m.
4. Before you get to Park Gate, and easy to miss, is a gate on the left, just before a bridge. There are two gates – despite the bridleway symbol on the second and despite what the OS map will tell you, the first, left-hand gives way to far easier terrain. Go through the gate, taking the obvious line.
5. After a quarter of a mile, turn right at a track, with North Lancashire Bridleway markers. Splash through a ford.
6. Descend to the farm, bearing left after the gate. Pass a fish ladder and emerge on the public road at a phone box. Turn right.
7. Turn right after 100 yards, passing through barn conversions at Higher Greystoneley. Drop to a water splash and follow the track down through woods. This gives way to open parkland. At the bottom, turn right on the public road, back into Chipping.
8. Climb out of Chipping from the church heading north on Church Raike, then fork right after 100 metres. Climb steeply from the duck pond with the valley on your left.
9. Where the lane levels, turn left into Fish House Lane. Drop into and climb out of the narrow valley to a T-junction. Bear right, climbing towards Outlane Head Cottage near Windy Harbour.
10. Take the bridleway on the left, past a couple of peaty ponds. Hold a steady bearing to pick up a sunken lane dropping to Ferry Butts and Black Hall. Go left at the road but almost immediately right on a muddy bridleway.
11. Go straight over the next road at a bungalow, The Croft then, ignoring the footpath sign opposite, take a diagonal bearing left across a meadow. Head between a sycamore and hawthorn then continue towards Pendle Hill. Drop down into the field corner and go through a gate. Drop under the power lines to another gate and out at a green, two-storey garage.
12. Bear right down the access road, heading south to join the public road. Keep southbound until the road veers right and go straight on.
13. Ignore the first left, taking the second left through meadows to Pale Farm. There’s a choice of footbridge or ford at the stream. A gate on the left brings you into a complex of buildings.
14. Pick up an arrow-straight access road heading North-East to the roadside cheese press outside the dairy. Turn left at the road and bimble back into Chipping.