Summer field trips 2024

Programme of Summer Field Trips 2024


In the event of adverse weather conditions, please refer to the website on the evening before the trip to see if it has been cancelled.  

In the interests of reducing our carbon footprint, the protection of habitats and landscape and limited parking we encourage members to car-share.

If you require a lift or are prepared to car-share, please contact Clare Shaw 07827 867188 who will add you to the Society’s WhatsApp group. Guidelines are on the contact page.

Please bring a packed lunch for all the field trips and wear suitable clothing and footwear.

Due to the sensitive nature of the sites no dogs are allowed on any of these walks.

Members and friends attend the field trips at their own risk and the Society cannot be held responsible for any accidents or incidents.


Tuesday 23rd April – Evening visit to Sandscale Haws with Clare Shaw

Sandscale Haws Nature Reserve, short walk and dusk natterjack toad chorus with an introduction from Darren Mason National Trust Ranger. Meet at 6p.m. in the car park. 

SD 200756; what3words /unite.teardrop.lamppost 

After a walk around the dunes and wet meadow we will head to the pond to listen for the dusk chorus. Note that this is heavily weather dependent (needs to be low wind and dry, but with rain in the previous few days!) so check for updates in case this needs to be cancelled. Bring warm clothing and stout footwear. Finish 9-9.30.

Co-ordinator: Clare Shaw 07827 867188


Wednesday 8th May - Barkbooth Lot and Low Fell Plantation 

Parking is limited, so please car-share where possible. We will meet in the car park at Crosthwaite Church at 10.00 and operate a shuttle to the reserve from there.

SD 446911; what3words/clues.fastening.notebook

This diverse reserve near Crosthwaite is made up of a mix of habitats: rough fell, grassland, wetland and woodland and supports an interesting range of species. In May there should be a fine display of bluebells, and we would hope to see and/or hear a number of warblers and other woodland and scrubland birds. Depending on weather there may also be dragonflies and damselflies, including beautiful demoiselles. There are medicinal leeches in the pools.

The walk should take around 2 ½ hours. Come prepared for uneven and perhaps muddy ground. After the walk, refreshments (tea, coffee and cakes) will be on sale at the adjacent Low Fell West. All profits to charity.

Co-ordinator: Alison McLeod 07473 049220


Tuesday 21st May - Barbondale with Paul Trowell

Meet at 10.45 am on the side of the road by the footbridge at Barbondale. 

SD 656828; what3words/coherent.cobble.kilowatt

Paul will take us along Barbon Beck to hopefully see Redstarts, Cuckoos, Pied flycatchers and other woodland birds and butterflies. Walk of around 3 miles. Be back at cars by 1.30pm Bring packed lunch.

Co-ordinator: Paul Trowell 07484 270075


Saturday 8h June - RSPB Hodbarrow with Mike Johnson

Meet at 10am at RSPB Hodbarrow car park. From Millom town square, continue east taking the second right (Mainsgate Road signposted for Hodbarrow RSPB). Continue for about 0.5miles turning left by the lagoon for the reserve car park. 

SD174790; what3words/sleep.degrading.lobbed

Mike will lead a walk from the car park towards Hodbarrow Point looking for butterflies and birds, then along the outer barrier towards Haverigg. We will return along the same route. Overall distance about 4.5 miles. (If you want to shorten the walk you can walk back along the road to the car park past the Port Haverigg holiday village.) Bring pack lunch. Aim to finish around 3pm.

Hoping to see little terns, Common terns, Sandwich terns, Ringed Plovers, Redshanks, Oystercatchers, Great Crested Grebes along with Ducks, Egrets and migrant birds. We will look for butterflies, insects and dragonflies, we will hopefully see Pyramid, Fly and Bee Orchids.

Co-ordinator: Mike Johnson 07540 767744


Friday 14th June - Arnside Knott with Roger Spooner 

Meet at 10.00am at Arnside Knott NT car park, up the hill from Redhills Road. 

SD 452773; what3words /bonkers.boarded.artichoke

Roger will take us for a walk around Redhills pasture, the Knott, and back to the car park by 2pm. Walk of around 3.5 miles. Please bring packed lunch.

Hopefully we will see Fly Orchids and Butterfly Orchids, Limestone fern and Lemon-scented fern plus a general array of limestone plants.

Co-ordinator: Roger Spooner 01524 701619


Monday 24th June - Foulshaw with David Talbot

Meet at 10.30am at Foulshaw Nature Reserve car park off the A590. 

SD 458838; what3words/sobbed.strumming.skippers

David will take us around the reserve to look for early season dragonflies, the White-faced Darter, damselflies, Chasers, insects and lizards and maybe an adder. There will be Ospreys and other birds to see, bring packed lunch finish mid-afternoon. 

Co-ordinator: David Talbot - 07774 686896


Monday 8th July - Butterflies of Arnside Knott with Steve Bradley

Meet at 11.00am at Arnside Knott NT car park, up the hill from Redhills Road. 

SD 452773; what3words /bonkers.boarded.artichoke

Target species: High Brown Fritillary, Scotch Argus, Brown Hairstreak, Grayling, Common Blue, Wall Brown, Large and Small Skippers, Small Heath, Ringlet and Gatekeeper. 

Steve will take us around Arnside Knott, a walk of around 3.5 miles. Please wear stout footwear and bring packed lunch, finish at 3pm

Coordinator: Mike Johnson 07540 767744


Wednesday 17th July - Warton Slag Banks with Lynne Farrell.

Meet at 10.30am at Cotes Stones Farm layby. 

SD486714; what3words/birthdays.vase.destined

We will walk from here along the footpath and track down towards the stock car racing area (which only operates at weekends) and perhaps as far as the point at SD473713. Bring a packed lunch and drink, as we could spend many hours down there on a pleasant day. Strong footwear recommended as slag banks are rough terrain.

The slag banks and adjacent saltmarsh provide a rich variety of plants, some uncommon in the AONB (Natural Landscape area). The flowery banks are also good for moths, butterflies, and fungi. We will also see various birds.

Co-ordinator: Lynne Farrell 01524 761064.


Thursday 25th July - Scout Scar with Richard Jefferson

Meet at 10.15 am at Helsington Church 

SD 488 889; what3 words/recent.wide.tigers

Bring packed lunch.

Scout Scar offers a range of limestone habitats which support a rich flora and fauna. These include wildflower-rich limestone grassland, heath, screes and crags. We should see a wide range of limestone flowers including common rockrose, dropwort, salad burnet, wild thyme and carline thistle.  We may encounter a scarce orchid -dark red helleborine and a number of more local flowers and ferns such as lesser meadow rue and green spleenwort.

Look out for butterflies as well.

A walk of around 4.5 miles with the aim of finishing by 3pm 

Leader: Richard Jefferson 07747 354318


Monday 29th July - Mid-afternoon walk at Myers Allotment with David Wrigley 

Meet at the top gate on the Row from the Slackwood Lane end at 3pm. Park along The Row in laybys.

SD 474749; what3words/receiving.observe.delivers

David will show us around Myers Allotment looking at the habitat and its butterflies. Then we will look for purple hairstreak butterflies from 5pm. Finish around 6.30.  

Co-ordinator: Sue Brindle 01524 963080


Monday 12th August - Visit to Julia Piggott’s bee reserve at Brigsteer 

Meet at 10.00am at Helsington Church. 

SD488889; what3words/recent.wide.tigers

We will walk down the steep slope to Julia’s house for a talk on bees before walking to the meadow to see the bees and have a go at identifying the different species. A walk of around 1.5 miles.

We will return to Julia’s house about 12.30/1pm – you should bring your own lunch. 

Please make a donation for the visit.

Co-ordinator: Fiona Newey 07752 398036


Friday 30th August - Evening bat walk at Levens Park with Gail Armstrong

Meet at 8pm in lay-by at side of A6 slip-road, just north of bridge at Levens Bridge.

SD 495854; what3words/rehearsed.onions.plot

We will walk along the river where a range of bat species are likely to be flying. Bring a head-torch, and a bat-detector if you have one. Some bat-detectors will be provided. The walk will last approximately two hours.

Co-ordinator: Alison McLeod 07473 049220


Tuesday 3rd September - Middleton Sands with Mike Johnson

Meet at 10.00am at Potts Corner car park, Carr Lane near Middleton 

SD 413571; what3words/cashiers.birdcage.unscrew

We will watch the high tide come in at 12.28 bringing in knots, oystercatchers, golden plovers, lapwings, dunlin, curlew, redshanks and other waders and sea birds. We will then walk along to Sambo’s grave and the bird hide. 

Walk of around 3 miles. Finish about 3pm.

Leader Mike Johnson 07540 767744


Saturday 14th September - Ashmeadow family day with Basil Herwald

Meet at 10.30am at the promenade entrance to Ashmeadow. 

SD 453786; what3words/dragon.marzipan.strain

Come and learn about woodland management and how the Barnes trustees look after the community orchards. Children welcome.

Co-ordinator: Basil Herwald 07980 826263


Tuesday 24th September - Mosses and Liverworts with Clare Shaw

Meet at 10.00am at Gait Barrows car park; if full park in nearby laybys. 

SD 478775; what3words/bounded.clapper.cosmetic

Bring hand lens or magnifying glass if you have one. (The Society has 8 hand lenses which will be brought for participants to use.) Clare will lead a short walk around Gait Barrows looking at a range of mosses and liverworts in different habitats and sharing key features that will help with identification. Finish at 1pm.

Joint walk with Arnside’s ‘Junction 36’ Photographic Club.

Co-ordinator: Clare Shaw 07827 867188 

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Arnside and District Natural History Society
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