" A wet and Windy Low Fell "

Date & Time: 2nd September 2006. 12.30 pm start.

Location of Start : Oak Cottage, Loweswater ( NY 143 211 )

Places visited : Foulsyke, Latterhead, Thackthwaite, Fellbarrow, Smithy Fell, Low Fell and back off the steep western side of the hill.

Walk details : 6.5 mls on the map , 1600 ft of ascent , 3 hrs 40 mins.

Walked with : Myself and nine other Online Fellwalking Club members.

Weather : Well, they forecasted poor weather, and they were right.

Forecast was for heavy rain and high winds !

Scale Hill with Whiteside in the background.


The Fellwalking club were gathering for an evening meet, but decided to have a daytime walk as well. We posted the suggestion of Hopegill Head and Whiteside, parking the cars on the Swinside Road, but the forecast was too wild to contemplate such an exposed and potentially slippery climb, so the group gathered at Loweswater and an alternative route was agreed for the day. It was raining when we started !

Jo, Mike, John P, John S, Pam, Christine, Terry, Andy, myself and Stephen.

Front row : Megan, Polly, Bethan and Harry.

Foulsyke House after we crossed the fields to the top road.

Normally this house has one of the best views in the Lake District, but not today.

A mile and a half road walk brought us to Thackthwaite (pronounced Thack'ut) Village where we turned up the lane by Thackthwaite House and climbed steadily towards the fell.

The rain had eased off slightly, enough to allow some wet weather gear to be removed.

In the distance is the outlier of Dodd with Swinside Ridge and Hopegill Head behind.

That was to have been our route but the weather had other plans.

Down in the valley below the preparations for tomorrows

Loweswater Show were going ahead despite the weather.


The marquees on the show ground were up

and the field was starting to be marked out.


Lets hope the weather, and in particular the forecasted strong winds,

would not cause problems.


Following the old footpath up, we climbed steadily. As we reached the ridge the rain increased slightly and the wind increased a lot, making conditions more difficult. Not only was the ground wet, but the stiles were slippery too.

From this point we turned right to Fellbarrow summit and then retraced our route back to the stile.

The ridge of Low Fell runs north-south and we had to walk directly into the strengthening wind.

A sheltered grassy slope on the ridge allowed a brief stop for a bite too eat. Several of the folk had an early start and little breakfast.

Our intention was to enjoy the beautiful heather on the high fells.

This quick photo of the heather on Low Fell would have to do today.

Those that have walked Low Fell will know that all the paths off the end involve steep descents.


In view of the slippery conditions we opted for the direct descent of the southern slope as it involved a more rugged path and potentially more grip than on the eastern side.


Unfortunately it also exposed us to the worst of the weather, but with care we all made it down to the footpath below.


Photo taken from inside my hat !

Down to the Scots Pine on the lower slope and easier going now.

To see what the view shuld have been, click here or on the link at the bottom of this page (after the walk photos).

A sheep shearing trailer, recently used, but not today ~ thought you might like the rain effect across the photo ~ It was then back to the cottage, a waiting teapot, and chance to dry out.

We had a very wet walk but spirits were high and I think everyone enjoyed this rather different sort of fellwalk this afernoon.

- - - o o o - - -

After a change of clothes we all met up again in the evening in the back room of the Kirkstile Pub in Loweswater.

The Fellwalking club exists in cyberspace a lot of the time, a message board where friends can meet and chat about walking all over the UK and abroad, not just the Lakes.


This evening was an opportunity to meet each other over a meal, and to listen to a guest speaker of note.


Who better than Hunter Davies, author, journalist and biographer of the late Alfred Wainwright, he who produced those excellent fell guides to the Lakes that we all know and love.

Hunter kept us well entertained with stories, not only of AW, but of many of the other famous people that he has had the opportunity to interview and write about.

In his investigations into Wainwright's life he found many interesting memorabilia, some of which he was able to bring along for us to see.

There followed an excellent meal prepared and served by the staff of the Kirkstile Inn.

Twenty six members and guests met up and enjoyed a really good evening.


Our thanks go to Hunter Davies

for such a memorable talk, and for his company during and after the meal.

As a memento of the evening, he was presented with an engraved wooded plaque, a picture version of which was also given to all present, in celebration of this fine Inaugural Dinner Meeting.


- - - 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 . . . a drying room and the biggest teapot in the village.

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Previous walk - 28th August 2006 Great Calva and mighty Mungrisedale Common

A previous time up here - 22th February 2006 Fellbarrow and Low Fell with Tim