Thursday, 19 May 2011

Repair work at Mickleden and Stickle

Last week we were again joined by the Fix the Fells volunteer lengthsmen for a work party. We generally run at least one work party each month where the lengthsmen get hands-on experience of footpath repair work.  Last weeks session was again held at Mickleden and nine volunteers came along to help out. In a similar fashion to last months work party the weather was not on our side. Despite the poor weather, between us all we completed a good amount of pitching and also replaced some stepping stones, with something a little more substantial, as the old ones were starting to get washed away.

Lengthsmen pitching at Mickleden

As we've been waiting for the helicopter lift at Stickle Ghyll, so that we can get the rock moved to site for this years work we are still fairly limited to what we can do up there. We therefore decided to make use of some stone that had been moved on a previous lift, but we'd not had the opportunity to use. 
A section of path had started to become undermined so we'd had some large rocks dropped nearby so that we could build up the edge of the path and prevent it from collapsing.

Under-cut footpath at Stickle Ghyll

Although we didn't have to move the rock too far (it can just be seen towards the top of the photo, next to the path) it wasn't the easiest to get into position, as rolling it over the path and off  the edge proved quite challenging to do in a controlled manner. Once the first rock was in place at the bottom of the slope we positioned the others behind it. We then tightened all the rocks against each other and also to the path, finally we filled in the gaps with rubble and topped it off with some soil.

Footpath after repair work

We've still got to put some grass seed down around the rocks to help everything stabilise and blend in a bit better with its surroundings but at least the path is safe from falling out now, preventing a much larger job than if we'd needed to rebuild the whole section of path.

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