Date & Time: Saturday 18th March 2006. 11.45 am start. ( NY 110 153 )

Location of Start : Bowness Knott car park, Ennerdale, Cumbria, Uk.

Places visited : Herdus, Great Borne, Starling Dodd, Smithy Beck and back.

Walk details : 5.7mls, 2,350 ft of ascent , 5hrs 10 mins.

Walked with : Angela, Ann and the three dogs, Bailey, Harry and Bethan.

Weather : Cool and breezy, a few clouds but a beautifully sunny winter's day.

Ennerdale Forest sign at Bowness Knott.

 

The view as we crested the rise from Lamplugh to Ennerdale was never better.

Ahead was Great Borne and its lower peak of Bowness Knott, and behind were the snow covered peaks of Pillar, Steeple, Haycock, Caw, down to Crag Fell and Grike on the right.

 

Crag Fell and the old farm house at Bowness Point.

 

Our starting point for the climb was back up the road a short way.

We crossed the stile and headed up the footpath, alongside Rake Beck, towards Great Borne.

Out of the wind the climbing was warm work in the midday sunshine so there were occasional stops to take off those extra layers of clothing we put on thinking it was going to be cold.

 

Rake Beck climbs steadily up towards the skyline to the hause between Bowness Knott and Great Borne.

 

The view as you reach any high point is usually delightful - today was no exception.

As we topped the rise the high peaks appeared, all beautifully covered in snow.

A close up on Green Gable and Great Gable at the head of Ennerdale.

Pillar Rock on the right hand side, can be seen standing out as the darker rock on Pillar fell side.

Ennerdale Lake spreads out below us as we climb again.

We follow the beck up as it takes a sharp left turn, and makes it way up to the highest slopes of Great Borne.

The Fox Bield on the way up Rake Beck.

Here, where the stones were more plentiful, a farmer of old had constructed a circular walled trap with a circumference of no more than six feet (2 metres). It was a similar depth and smooth sided so any fox lured into it by the bait would get trapped and could be caught and killed.

   
The fox bield with Ennerdale Lake below.
The waterfall high on Rake Beck

Angie tops out above the falls

after a steep final climb up the path through the rocks and heather.

Off the slope, into the wind.

We diverted left, over to the western end of the fell, to the minor summit known as Herdus

That panorama rises again

from near our lunch spot on the front of Herdus.

 

   
Crossing to Great Borne.
Our first small snow climb.

Bethan and Harry waiting near the top of the snow slope.

Four wheel drive and automatic crampons were a great help to get to the top first.

The summit of Great Borne looking down on Low Fell and the Lorton Valley.

The rocks up here were an unusual pink granite, and were rounded stones, unlike the flat Borrowdale slate we were used to further up the valley.

The girls at the Great Borne summit trig point.

An eastern panorama from the trig point.

Click here or on the photo for a larger annotated image.

   
Stunning views of Green and Great Gable
and of Pillar, at the top of Ennerdale Valley.

 

   
The strange V shaped fence towards Starling Dodd.
A close up of the girls rounding the corner.

The notice says please walk round the conservation area.

Ahead was the snowy slopes of Starling Dodd.

Click here or on the photo for a minute or so of daft winter fun.

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Ann and I on the top of Starling Dodd.

 

The summit sculpture made from old fence posts,

with its winter backdrop of Green Gable, Great Gable and Kirk Fell.

Ahead was Red Pike and the High Stile ridge.

A passing grey cloud gave a flurry of snow and clothed the tops for a minute or two before moving on.

Our route was downward from here on.

We turned right and cut down over the grass and heather covered sloped towards the firebreak in the forest below.

The upper reaches of Ennerdale from the juniper tree.

Blue skies were once again the order of the day.

   
Starling Dodd from Smithy Beck
The Smithy Beck Falls

We made our way down through the trees onto the forestry track and then down the way marked footpath of the Smithy Beck Trail (red route). In the forest were the remains of old houses and charcoal pits, part of the old industry of Ennerdale, which included iron smelting, hence the name Smithy Beck.

Down by the lake

Time for Harry to take a swim after a thrown stick or two, despite the cool nature of the water.

   
Steeple and Scoat Fell
High fells above the trees.

A last look back, with glorious afternoon sun on the lake.

Back then to the car and home.

Our first lambs of the season on the Lamplugh fields

The farmers in some areas have had lambs for three or four weeks now, but our recent walks have been towards the higher fells so we have not seen this season's new arrivals till today. The Loweswater flocks are not due to lamb for another week or two.

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Technical note: Pictures taken with a Canon IXUS 400 Digital camera.

Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.

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Previous walk - 17th March 2006 Rannerdale to home - a longer dog walk

A previous time up here - 3rd August 2003 A Voluntary Wardens Walk, Smithy Beck, in Ennerdale