Greenfield Valley

low cloud

Bird's-eye primrose
Bird’s-eye primrose

The sun struggles to get through the low cloud over Langstrothdale and it never breaks through at all in the next dale, the Greenfield Valley.

We see pied and grey wagtails at Oughtershaw Beck then head up the slope towards Pewet Moss where bird’s-eye primrose, lousewort and butterwort grow in the boggier patches.

The plantations on the far side of the hill, on the slope down into the Greenfield Valley, have been clear-felled so what used to be a shady ride between conifers is now a track across an open slope.

We sit on a couple of sawn off stumps to take a break for a flask of coffee and look out over a slope that has already been planted out with conifer saplings. Each sapling is planted on a scooped up mound which prevents its roots becoming waterlogged.


water avensThere are chaffinch and blackbirds about, birds that will probably find the open habitat more to their liking than the dense stands of conifers that stood here a year ago. Jackdaws call over pastures in the valley.

Water avens (right) grows alongside one of the gills draining into the Green Field Beck.



lithostrotionlithostrotionThe track has been repaired with crushed limestone. A few of the fragments are full of fossils, including the rugose coral Lithostrotion (above & left).

Another fragment (below) contains the valve of a brachiopod shell and a cross section of another type of coral, divided by septa which radiate from a central point.

fossilsLimestone Pavement

Greenfield valleyWe take another short break by the limestone pavement in the Greenfield Valley where I sketch Beckermonds Farm.

Common spotted orchids are in flower amongst the grasses near the exposures of limestone.

On our walk back via Oughtershaw village we see spotted flycatcher. The narrow roadside verges in front of the drystone walls are full of red campion, Herb Robert, water avens and dogs mercury.

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