Author Topic: TR - Scafell Pike October 2018  (Read 789 times)

richardh1905

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TR - Scafell Pike October 2018
« on: 21:39:34, 02/01/19 »

After climbing Ben Nevis last July, my 11 year old son was keen to add Scafell Pike to his list of mountains climbed, and the opportunity arose in October whilst we were on holiday in the SW Lake District. We stayed in a delightful old house above Eskdale, almost 400 years old, handy for the hills, pubs and for visiting family.


Copyright Ordnance Survey 2019

After consulting the forecast for the next few days, we tentatively chose Monday 15th October for our attempt. The day dawned bright and sunny, so we drove over to Wasdale and parked on the green at Wasdale Head. Beautiful views of Great Gable with the morning sunlight throwing the cliffs into sharp relief, surely one of the most photogenic mountains in Britain.


Great Gable in the morning sunlight

The Corridor Route was our chosen route, so we crossed the meadows at the head of Wasdale, the lane bordered by remarkable dry stone walls, in places thicker than they are high. We joined the Sty Head path and climbed out of the valley, traversing across the screes below Great Gable. I tried without success to pick out Napes Needle amongst the crags above.


Mouintaineering dog

We met several groups of people once we got to the head of the pass; thankfully most had other objectives in mind. Initially the Corridor Route descends somewhat, traversing below the crags of Spout Head, a spur of Great End. We crossed Skew Gill, an easy scramble up the far side, and then the serious climbing started. Good views across the valley to Great Gable, and behind to Blencathra, another highly photogenic mountain, in my opinion - sadly my phone camera doesn’t really do it justice. Skiddaw also came into view, as did the distant northern Pennines.
 
At one stage we had to scramble down a crag and traverse around the head of a steep sided ravine, a tributary of Greta Gill, and I had to help the dog down. The climbing continued, but the path leveled off somewhat as we approached the head of Piers Gill, passing a small tarn with Great Gable reflected in it (Middleboot Knott Tarn?). A lovely spot for a wild camp.


Great Gable reflected in Middleboot Knotts Tarn

After passing the head of Piers Gill, the terrain changed, becoming a lot stonier as we met the tourist route coming up from Brown Tongue; also a lot more people around as we climbed. The summit of Lingmell fell away behind us, the ground started to level off, and there it was - the summit plinth, with perhaps 30 people on or around it.

The views were fantastic - we could see over the top of Helvellyn to Cross Fell and the High Pennines. To the South East we spotted Ingleborough, and to the South, Heysham power station and the coast Lancashire coast beyond. To the North, we could see Criffel across the Solway Firth, and some higher hills in the far distance. We found some rocks to sit on to the south, and enjoyed our sandwiches and Lidl ‘Alpengut’ dried sausage in the sunshine.


Great Gable, Skiddaw, Blencathra, northern Helvellyn range, with Sty Head Tarn in the centre.


Another fine view to the North, Criffel in the distance far left, Derwentwater to the right.


Pillar and Grasmoor, with tantalising glimpses of the Galloway hills beyond, and the top of Lingmell just visible

After descending towards Lingmell we took the tourist path down towards Brown Tongue. More lovely views - this time of Wastwater laid out below us.


Wast Water far below.

The path turns into a tedious rock staircase lower down, necessary I know for erosion control, but hard on the knees, especially when you have an over enthusiastic dog dragging you downwards. Shortly after fording Lingmell Gill, an interesting distraction from the descent, we branched off to the right, taking a path that traverses across the lower slopes of Lingmell, back towards Wasdale Head. Much easier going, and a pleasant end to the walk.


Pillar and Kirk Fell, from the path traversing below Lingmell


Great Gable in the late afternoon sunshine.

A pint was called for, so into Ritsons Bar after a brief peep into the small outdoor shop. Beautiful views in the late afternoon sun necessitated several 'camera stops' as we drove back to our house.


Scafell Pike and Scafell


Looking back up Wast Water.


The Screes


Almost back. What an array of mountains in the fading sunlight!
« Last Edit: 14:16:38, 03/01/19 by richardh1905 »

Ridge

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Re: TR - Scafell Pike October 2018
« Reply #1 on: 22:32:49, 02/01/19 »
Amazing photos, looks like you had a great day.
Over hill, over dale. Thorough brush, thorough brier....
I do wander every where

April

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Re: TR - Scafell Pike October 2018
« Reply #2 on: 08:42:32, 03/01/19 »
Wonderful photos Richard  O0 It is always fantastic when you get days like this, they are rare  :)

I always call that tarn Middleboot Knotts Tarn, but I don't know if it has an official name as such. We have wild camped near there but the weather was atrocious. I will put it on the wild camp list for this year; it does look fab when the weather is good.
"Who would've thought...... you are light and darkness coming through" words by Tim Armstrong

richardh1905

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Re: TR - Scafell Pike October 2018
« Reply #3 on: 09:11:56, 03/01/19 »
Green Crag - Thursday 18th October

We decided to head into the hills again later that week - I was keen to do a walk from our door at Birkerthwaite Farm. Over the week I had done a number of exploratory dog walks from the farm (including a wonderful moonlit walk to Devoke Water), and had found a route out onto the moors to the east that didn't involve scaling taut barbed wire fences or wallowing through bog - or so I thought.


Early morning view from Birkerthwaite. We didn't use the picnic table!

So off we went, Tess the spaniel leading the way as always. My route soon ran into trouble, a couple of wide water filled channels blocking our way. These had to be negotiated by using the adjacent barbed wire fence as a suspension bridge - an entertaining spectator sport! Luckily we all got across dry footed - except for Tess, who doesn't mind getting her feet wet! The going improved as we started to climb; a rising traverse below Great Crag onto open moorland, where we followed faint sheep tracks.


Moorland above Eskdale


Crook Crag and Green Crag

After crossing a small burn, we climbed more steeply up a grassy slope immediately to the south of Green Crag - this bought us out onto a small col, where we got good views of the mountains ahead.


Scafell range and Harter Fell

Some nice scrambly rocks led us to the summit - extensive views all around, and not a soul in sight!


View from the summit of Green Crag

We descended towards, and then bypassed Crook Crag, before descending more steeply to the north. We then entered some delightfully rough country, reminiscent of the northern Rhinog 'badlands', and lost whatever indistinct path there was.


Stunted Spruce in the 'Badlands'

After weaving our way around minor crags and across heather moorland, we dropped down to join the bridleway that runs below Harter Fell between upper Eskdale and Dunnerdale. Because of our slow progress over the rough ground, our thoughts turned from Harter Fell to a pint and a meal in the Woolpack! The descent along the bridleway into Eskdale was a delight, the path traverses across the slopes and emerges right at the foot of Hard Knott Pass. The weather remained fine, and the road was quiet enough to make the walk down the valley enjoyable.


Upper Eskdale

The Woolpack Inn is a bit of a strange place, half traditional pub and half café. But the Steak and Kidney pie was excellent, as was the beer.

Continuing down the valley, we were soon able to leave the road and join a delightful path that runs along and above the south bank of the River Esk. Lovely woodland. We climbed out of the valley along a path up a small wooded ravine to take a look at Stanley Force, but I was somewhat underwhelmed by the waterfalls. The walk back to Birkerthwaite across the open moorland and then high pastures was much more enjoyable.

A good day out on some less frequented hills.





And of course no trip to Eskdale is complete without a ride on La'al Ratty !
« Last Edit: 20:18:07, 03/01/19 by richardh1905 »

richardh1905

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Re: TR - Scafell Pike October 2018
« Reply #4 on: 09:33:10, 03/01/19 »
Amazing photos, looks like you had a great day.

Wonderful photos Richard O0
It is always fantastic when you get days like this, they are rare  :) 

I always call that tarn Middleboot Knotts Tarn, but I don't know if it has an official name as such. We have wild camped near there but the weather was atrocious. I will put it on the wild camp list for this year; it does look fab when the weather is good.

Thanks Ridge, April.

I found a reference to Middleboot Knotts Tarn on the internet after you correctly identified where I took the photo from, April, so I have used the name.
« Last Edit: 13:36:31, 03/01/19 by richardh1905 »

pdstsp

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Re: TR - Scafell Pike October 2018
« Reply #5 on: 11:34:32, 03/01/19 »
Great pics and TR Richard - the Corridor route is a lovely approach (or descent).


I also have a real soft spot for Green Crag, though I've never approached it from anywhere other than Harter Fell, its a lovely quiet area, though it can involve some wading!

April

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Re: TR - Scafell Pike October 2018
« Reply #6 on: 12:32:54, 03/01/19 »
More lovely pics  O0
"Who would've thought...... you are light and darkness coming through" words by Tim Armstrong

beefy

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Re: TR - Scafell Pike October 2018
« Reply #7 on: 13:53:22, 03/01/19 »
Cracking pics richard O0
DRIP COFFINS  :D

Ridge

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Re: TR - Scafell Pike October 2018
« Reply #8 on: 14:49:23, 03/01/19 »
Great pics
Jealous of the Green Crag views.
Over hill, over dale. Thorough brush, thorough brier....
I do wander every where

karl h

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Re: TR - Scafell Pike October 2018
« Reply #9 on: 19:37:53, 03/01/19 »
Lovely pics from a couple of classic mountain days there Richard  O0
By coincidence  i was wandering those 'badlands' around Green Crag yesterday and camped just below
show your love for Lady Nature. And she will come back again.
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richardh1905

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Re: TR - Scafell Pike October 2018
« Reply #10 on: 20:20:40, 03/01/19 »

Thanks for the feedback, pdstsp, April, Ridge, Beefy, Karl.


Yes, an ideal quiet corner for a wild camp. Just the sort of country that I like to lose myself in.

Ridge

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Re: TR - Scafell Pike October 2018
« Reply #11 on: 20:28:04, 03/01/19 »
If you do end up moving you are going to have to buy that lad a set of Wainwrights and possibly a chart to tick them off.
« Last Edit: 21:47:45, 03/01/19 by Ridge »
Over hill, over dale. Thorough brush, thorough brier....
I do wander every where

sunnydale

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Re: TR - Scafell Pike October 2018
« Reply #12 on: 21:21:07, 03/01/19 »
Gorgeous photos Richard O0
***Happiness is only a smile away***

richardh1905

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Re: TR - Scafell Pike October 2018
« Reply #13 on: 21:45:16, 03/01/19 »

Thanks Sunnydale  :)
We had an excellent week.

vghikers

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Re: TR - Scafell Pike October 2018
« Reply #14 on: 17:41:24, 04/01/19 »
Superb clear photos on both outings.
The Green Crag / Crook Crag area around Birker Fell is one of the great gems of the Lakes, wild and underrated but little walked.