Forest head to Gains – disused railways,Old Mines and quarries -Cumbria

Brampton Railway

image of area  from


we went from Blacksyke colliery to the  Blacksyke quarry  to Gairs colliery


along this route ran the famous  Rocket  steam engine

“In April 1837 James Thompson purchased George Stephensons Rocket from the Liverpool and Manchester Railway for the sum of £300″

background note:

Blacksyke Colliery

“Blacksyke Colliery’s first shaft was sunk during 1820-1 and went into production in 1822-3 using a steam engine for pumping and coal winding. To serve this Blacksyke colliery a branch line was put in East of Hallbangate climbing in a south westerly direction via a rope hauled line to reach this bleakly sited colliery”.

details of accidents at colliery




this is a coke oven


mine in the mist


at the top of the hill  of mine waste

steam engine where it used to be

note from dad : used for mine and the railway -incline was too steep for engines on their own !

video of Blacksyke mine

Blacksyke s quarry

red sandstone

note from dad -not from this area looks like Eden red sandstone ?

smmmmmooooth stone looks like wood !

Blacksyke quarry from above

Forest head Quarry







try and spot the railway line


Here are the railway tracks to Gains Colliery

background note :

Gairs Colliery – Work began on Gairs Colliery on the bleak windswept fells above Hallbankgate during 1909 and was completed by 1912. Besides the main seam there was a blacksmith shop and screens for sorting the coal. With this new development a further extension of the Brampton Railway was completed with a branch leaving the Blacksyke route near Forrest Head and following the course of the older line to Howgill. Beyond Howgill the new line climbed steeply to Gairs Colliery with gradients of between 1 in 27 to 1 in 18 which was one of the steepest worked adhesion lines in Great Britian at the time. At its peak in 1921 Gairs Colliery employed 180 below ground and 51 above ground and was finally abandoned on 6th September 1936

an old railway bridge  on the way to Gains colliery



the spooky house  ( dads note :Gains house where the mine manager was supposed to live but its split into two houses  which are equal ? )


Dads note we did not explore the mine because of the weather moving in see right hand side of the photo

safety choice – Jake was tired due to adverse weather conditions , don’t take risks and become a casualty  there’s always next time !

I am in the fog wind and rain again


note from Dad -we dropped height and took the protected route next to the stone wall to avoid the wind



video showing high wind ,rain and low level cloud



a mine opening  ?

(one of the small breaks in the weather to allow a good photo )


note – from dad

weather for route

high winds leading to high chill factor -cold due to driving rain  and wind , poor visibility at times  -down to 5m ,

above this area is a place called cold fell – a name not without reason !


route taken

blackberry played up due to getting wet so distance is underestimated times/speed not accurate

point to point run




Local mountain rescue team


walk links


we used a combination of the above two walks plus the Cumbria railways site to explore this area Gains mine in better weather than we had !



One Response to “Forest head to Gains – disused railways,Old Mines and quarries -Cumbria”

  1. Wow it's amazing how quickly the weather can change! Good on dad for getting you down via a safe route. And wow that sandstone is gorgeous!! So pretty and smooth!

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