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Walk 4: The Canal and the Lancashire Coastal Way






A chance to experience the atmospheric scenery of the salt marshes and sands of the Keer Estuary as it flows into the vast basin of Morecambe Bay, one of Europe’s foremost sites for wading waterfowl. Look out, too for cockle harvesters out on the distant flats, practicing their hazardous craft between the tides. Before the railway forged a route across viaducts and embankments to the Cartmel Peninsula, the quickest way from this main part of Lancashire to ‘Lancashire-over-the-Sands’ was to make the risky crossing across the Keer Channel and Warton Sands to Kent’s Bank, on the distant shore near the prominent Humphrey Head. It took a skilled man to learn the vagaries of the shifting sands, quicksand and creeks. Such people were employed as professional guides to take coaches and carts across the treacherous passage. IMPORTANT: The Coastal Path can be liable to flooding for short periods at high tide. Only pass point 2 on this walk if you have at least 2 hours before high tide. Information can be obtained by telephone on 01524 582808. Distance/time: 5 miles (8km)/2 hours 30 mins. Please note: walkers are politely reminded to observe the Country Code, which includes the following: • Enjoy the countryside and respect its life and work. • Guard against all risk of fire. • Fasten all gates. • Keep your dog(s) under close control. • Keep to public paths across farmland. • Use gates and stiles to cross fences, hedges and walls. • Leave livestock, crops and machinery alone. • Take your litter home. • Help to keep all water clean. • Protect wildlife plants and trees. • Take special care on country roads. • Refrain from unnecessary noise.

Walk Waypoints

  1. 1 From Market Street. cross the traffic lights and the A6 to continue along Kellet Road to the canal bridge. Here turn right just before the bridge, and walk down through the play area to the canal towpath. Turn right, pass by the marina and stick to the towpath until nearing bridge number 125, known locally as Bolton Cinder Ovens Bridge. Just before the bridge, leave the towpath by a gate on the right, and follow the road down to the A6. Cross slightly to the right to go down a one-way street. Follow this, St Nicholas Lane, under the railway to the shore.
  2. 2 Wild Duck Hall is the farm on the shore at the road bend. Turn right here along the track outside the sea wall towards Bolton Holmes Farm. Here leave the track, and walk to the edge of the salt marsh. If the tide is high or the sea is coming in, then turn back as the way ahead will be flooded. After half a mile, you pass Marsh House, and there is a better path alongside the River Keer to the road. Bear left along the road, following the River Keer past the footbridge, which takes the Coastal Way on to Warton, and under the railway bridges back to Carnforth town centre.

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