The repaired Scarth Gap path

The repaired Scarth Gap path

A footpath leading to the late Alfred Wainwright’s favourite fell has been repaired after it was damaged by a landslide during the 2009 Cumbria floods.

The surface of the bridleway between Gatesgarth and Scarth Gap was washed away and walkers and mountain bikers tackling the route have had to find a way round the 30m gap in the path.

The bridleway leads from Gatesgarth in the Buttermere valley to Scarth Gap, the col between High Crag and Hay Stacks, where Wainwright’s ashes were scattered, before continuing to the Black Sail hut in Ennerdale.

The author of the Pictorial Guides to the Lakeland Fells called the route ‘one of the pleasantest of foot passes’.

Lake District National Park Authority put in a successful bid to the Rural Development Programme for England for the £70,000 needed to repair the path.

The authority has also put in place measures at the site to deal with surface water to try to prevent a recurrence of the problem. A local contractor recovered more than 100 tonnes of material from the foot of the slope to use in its repair and slate from the nearby Honister Slate Mine was used to create a drain.

The damaged bridleway before repairs were carried out

The damaged bridleway before repairs were carried out

Lake District National Park Paths for the Public project coordinator Dylan Jackman said: “I’m really delighted that the bridleway has been repaired.

“It’s been a while coming, but it has been quite a unique project and something that needed careful consideration.”

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