Date & Time: 18th February 2006. 10.30am start.
Location of Start : Latrigg car park at the head of Gale Road above Keswick. (NY 281 253)
Places visited : Lonscale Fell, Jenkin Hill, Lesser Man, Little Man and Skiddaw itself.
Walk details : 7.4 miles, 2570 ft of ascent, 6 hrs including lunch.
Walked with : Ann, John Patterson, Jo Hall and her dogs.
Weather : Brilliant - overcast to start, clearing to sunshine with dramatic cloud effects all day. A little summit cloud for a time.
The start at Gale Road end
Ann and I were joined today by John and Jo for a repeat of our walk five years ago when Ann and I completed our first round of Wainwright's. Skiddaw Little Man has ever since held a special place in our hearts.
That day was gloriously sunny and we spent a delightful time walking along the snow covered tops. Today we had a covering of snow on the summits but no guarantee on the weather. The forecast however, predicted sunshine and light winds, so hopes were high.
At the start we kept to the lower track and headed right (east) on the bridle way across the lower sloped on Lonscale
on the route to Skiddaw House via the Glenderaterra valley.
Looking back we could see snow on the high north western fells of Eel Crag and Grisedale Pike.
The Howell Monument, to past shepherds of Lonscale, can just be seen on the green ridge to the right of the photo.
As we reached the gate at the end of the open fell side, we turned left and started our climb.
The route follows the edge of the Crags and we had fine views down into the valley. Our dogs high on the ridge noticed a fox below who quickly ran off across the heather . I just managed a quick photo before he was gone.
The grey skies were gone too
and we had the first views of the snow covered tops of Blencathra.
Our first summit - not really - just a slight diversion
to the edge of the fell overlooking Blencathra.
The (in)famous Mungrisedale Common
The grassy flat top of this Wainwright Fell hosts one of the smallest summit cairns around, if you can find it !
The view back from Lonscale summit.
The view forward towards Skiddaw Little Man and Skiddaw.
Here was the snow and the sunshine we had hoped for.
Walking alongside the fence to Jenkin Hill
The sky was not clear blue all over, but the clouds certainly added to the atmosphere.
The central fells it seemed were suffering under a heavy cloud layer whereas we had sunshine.
With the summit of Little Man behind.
Time for lunch
and time to add a fleece beneath you to protect from the cold ground !
The two walkers ahead of us had made their way up with oversized, square rucksacks. Once on the top the purpose of the large sacks became obvious as they opened out the contents to provide them with a totally different form of transport for the second half of their day.
Take off, as the blue paraglider starts his flight.
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A short panorama of Carlside, Longside and the main summit.
After our lunch our route took us along the fence line to Skiddaw itself.
John, stopping to admire the view.
Reaching the first summit the cloud started to close in
so I captured a quick view looking south.
Our small group reaches the slightly busy summit of Skiddaw
the trig point to the left, the viewing table to the right.
As we got to the top we met this young couple who were obviously delighted at reaching the summit.
They were from the Manchester area and they proudly announced that they were going to get married. We suspect that the question had only just been proposed !!
As quickly as it arrived, the cloud partially cleared
and we were treated to fine views of surrounding fells through the gaps.
Looking east to Carrock Fell and the distant Pennines
with Cross Fell enjoying uninterrupted sunshine.
On the way back . . .
Keswick, Derwent Water and the central fells.
by-passing Little Man
we took the main path on its northern side back to Jenkin Hill and the earlier gate.
The sunshine has certainly melted some of the snow on Lesser Man since we climbed it a few hours ago.
The southern panorama is noticeably green
compared to the recent whites of the tops.
Back to the start - the Howell Monument - and the junction with the path to Lonscale which we took earlier.
"Great Shepherd of Thy heavenly flock. These men have left our hill,
Their feet were on the living rock. Oh guide and bless them still."
The Howell inscription.
- - - o o o - - -
Technical note: Pictures taken with a Canon IXUS 400 Digital camera.
Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.
This site best viewed with . . . the exuberance of youth, as we found on the summit!