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Date & start time: Sunday 7th December 2008. 11.30 am start.

Location of Event : Stoneycroft, Newlands Valley, Cumbria, Uk ( NY 233 217 )

Places visited : Stoneycroft, Steel Hause, Causey Pike, Scar Crags, High Moss, Stoneycroft Gill path back to the car.

Walk details : 4.75 ml, 2000 ft of ascent, 4 hours 10 mins.including lunch.

Highest point : Scar Crags 2205 ft ( 672m )

Walked with : Hilton, John P, Ann and the dogs, Polly, Harry and Bethan.

Weather : Cloudy with sun before lunch but temperatures close to zero plus a big wind chill on the ridge.

One of those sunny periods as we meet at Stoneycroft


Following yesterday's glorious winter wonderland walk up Haystacks, today was never going to be the same.

A cloudier and windier day was forecasted so warm and windproof clothing was top of the agenda when packing the rucksack.

Still, it was a great start to the day.

This is the view over the top of Stoneycroft Farm towards snow capped Skiddaw.

Our small party today . . . Ann, John, Hilton . . .
. . . and myself. (note the gloves in view of the temperature)

Our primary target, Causey Pike, looking resplendent in it's remaining winter mantle.

The temperatures today, although cold, are a few degrees up and some of the snow cover has gone already.

We reach the snow line and climb the relatively new machine made section of the path to Sleet Hause.

We've climbed diagonally up, taking the direct line as opposed to the Rowling End route we often take.

Completing the first part of the ascent, we look up at the main summit.

The larger walking group that had set off ahead of us are part way to the top now.

Sleet Hause and the flatter section towards Rowling End.
Looking down to Rigg Beck and over to Little Town.

The purple house at Rigg Beck (by the bend) has has been cleared completely after the fire and is now just a flat pile of rubble.

Our turn to start the main climb.

The snow is soft having thawed since yesterday and climbing needs care but is relatively straightforward.

Fine views between Sail and Ard Crags looking west over to Starling Dodd and the High Stile Ridge.

Pause, or should that be Paws ?
Continuation . . .

Hilton takes care on the final rock scramble before the top.

Team photo, taken by a fine gentleman from the Clitheroe walking party

who were still on the top and admiring the view as we arrived.

Time for us to do the same.

Below is Derwent Water, the light and shade being due to a layer of ice which partially covers the lake.

Once the top was clear I held back to take this photo using the panorama mode on the camera.

Click here or on the photo above for a 360 degree annotated photo.

- - - o o o - - -

Ann holding back this time for a snow filled picture as we walk along the undulations of the Causey Pike Ridge

We're still in sunshine but there's a strong wind on the ridge.

Ahead the weather is looking quite grey and the clouds are down on Eel Crags ahead.

Ann looking well wrapped and reasonably warm.
Time for lunch . . . a souper idea !

We stop for lunch having found some relative shelter out of the wind just below the ridge.

Yes and very nice it is too!

" Would that be some rather nice Sardines in Olive oil you would be partaking of Hilton ? "

Hold your cursor over the photo for the reply !

Back on our way now.

The sunshine has gone and that wind seems to have an extra bite to it.

Catbells below and distant cloud covered Helvellyn.

Scar Crags ahead , a steep rocky edge and a number of small but fine cornices of snow.

To our left, the view of Eel Crags, Whiteside (just), Hopegill Head, Sand Hill and the prominent Grisedale Pike

taken across High Moss and the grey looking Coledale Valley.

A partial cornice on the last rise where the snow has collected out of the wind.

Harry has been over to see where Bethan has got to . . . she's 50 yards further down . . . as usual !

A lone walker approaches as we drop down to Sail Hause.

The climb ahead to Sail Fell looked cold and uninviting as it disappeared into the mist.

The walking group ahead has almost made it to the top however

but here at the low point of the ridge it's our decision to return to the valley.

The old miners track heading down towards Outerside as we leave the top.

Foot deep snow covered the path

but it is soft enough to kick steps or use those created by previous walkers. ( No need for extra equipment today.)

Force Crag Mine, the last working mineral mine in the Lakes, till it closed in 1991.

We're warmer again now we are out of the strong wind, but it still looks cold down there.

A close up of the partially restored old mine buildings.
Ann further down the path.

Taking care on the last of the steep snow.

High Moss and the path has levelled out prior to it's descent back to Stoneycroft.

Stile End and Barrow ahead as we follow the wider miner's track.

Ann looking warm but Hilton not quite so, as we leave the snow line behind and return to the car.

- - - o o o - - -


Technical note: Pictures taken with with my Cannon G7 or Ann's Ixus 75 Digital cameras.

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

This site best viewed with . . . warm hat, mitts and a buff pulled up over your nose !!

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Previous walk - 6th Dec 2008 Winter Wonderland on Haystacks

A previous time up here - 18th Oct 2007 Causey Pike and Sail