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Date & start time: Saturday 27th Feb 2010, 11.20 am start.
Location of Start : Thackthwaite Village, Cumbria, Uk ( NY 149 238 )
Places visited : Thackthwaite, Broadmoor Hill, Hatteringill Head, Fellbarrow, Watching Crag, Low Fell, South top, Foulsyke and home.
Walk details : 5.1 mls, 1650 ft, 4 hrs 15 mins including lunch.
Highest point : Low Fell 1387 ft ( 423m)
Walked with : Gary and Sheena, Ann and the dogs, Tim, Harry and Bethan.
Weather : Beautifully sunny winter's day with some high cloud.
A local walk with friends takes on a new light as we head for Fellbarrow
but take a right turn at the start instead of continuing on the normal path.
The winter weather really helped make this walk special
Saturday morning and it's a cold, frosty morning but wonderfully clear.
This is the view from the garden of Mellbreak, snowy Hen Comb and Black Crags (part of Gavel Fell)
This is the second shot of the day as I went out to feed the birds.
(The dogs were also eating al-fresco today because of the beautiful morning)
Someone couldn't wait . . . he's in the picture above too
and has been a regular friendly visitor every morning during the cold weather.
For today's walk we (Ann, Gary, Sheena and myself ) drove the three miles to Thackthwaite Village
in order to start the walk up the curved footpath up from the village onto Fellbarrow and Low Fell.
After walking up the lane alongside Galloway Farm the path enters the fields and Sheena and Ann head for the fell gate.
There's plenty of new snow on the fell tops today, as can be seen on Swinside, Dodd and Whiteside behind.
Old trees that crashed in the 2003 storms still lie battered across the old track.
While it was really sunny above us there was patches of high cloud and fell top low cloud all round.
Rather than follow the normal curved path up the fell there was an executive decision
to turn right, to stay low for now and cut across to Broadmoor Hill in order to climb the skyline up from the right hand side.
A quick deviation from our planned route
took us onto the small outlying hill at the bottom of the ridge.
All the same views as normal but seen today from a different perspective.
We're further north of Thackthwaite and further up the fell than is usual on a Fellbarrow climb.
Our first intended route can be seen away to the left but today we are hoping to walk the ridge up to snowy Fellbarrow summit.
It's shown on the map as open access land on the green grass of the climb.
The view north to the distant Scottish Lowlands.
Retro . . . looking back at Broadmoor Hill as we start the climb.
We cross the snow line, the winter covering persisting more here due to the north facing aspect of this part of the fell.
The views open out as we climb higher.
The tops of the high fells all have wispy cloud but most summits are visible.
Wide open spaces allow the dogs a chance to run and play.
Gary looks heavily laden but he's carrying normal gear (and lunch) on his back counter balanced by his large camera bag on the front.
Zoomed in on the zig-zag footpath up from Thackthwaite and the high fells of the High Stile Ridge behind.
Our second minor summit of the day completed as Gary reaches Hatteringill Head cairn.
Ann's not far behind.
But these two were in front as usual !
Beyond them and the cairn is the view of the Solway estuary, the wind farms surrounding Workington and the distant Scottish coast.
An artistic shot of the ladder stile as we start the ascent to Fellbarrow itself.
To be fair I helped him up . . . but after he jumped down and I moved away he promptly jumped back up of his own volition.
A neat high jump and a quick stop and he was there . . . perhaps he wanted to stop Bethan climbing the trig.
Looking round at the cloud and snow on Grasmoor.
Further to the left, this was Whiteside looking suitably . . . white.
From the summit of Fellbarrow looking south
picking out all the snow on the north facing slopes of the fells ahead.
Gary skirting Smithy Fell as we make our way across to Low Fell.
Watching Crag . . . a suitable place for lunch and a view to "watch" while we enjoyed it.
Low Fell ahead and the Loweswater Fells of Carling Knott and Burnbank behind.
Ahead of us the view spread out to include the whole of the Buttermere and Crummock Valley
and left ( out of picture) all the way down towards Cockermouth.
Zooming in on the head of Buttermere with Great Gable, Haystacks and Rannerdale Knotts central to the picture.
A retro shot again . . . looking back this time from Low Fell summit at Watching Crag to the right and Fellbarrow away to the left.
From the summit the path dips slightly, heading for the southern cairn and viewpoint overlooking the darker Mellbreak.
Whiteside, Hopegill Head and distant Ladyside Pike from Low Fell's second cairn.
Grisedale Pike was just out of the cloud just to the right of the sunlit rounded top of Ladyside
and Skiddaw just shows above the Swinside Ridge to the left . . . not a bad view !
Turning, we get a view down on the partially frozen Loweswater.
Gary, Sheena, Tim and Ann enjoying the view.
Starting the steep descent off Low Fell.
Despite the warm sunshine, the wind had a cold chill within it so it was hat and gloves and a wind proof top since lunchtime.
A dog gate in the fence meant Tim didn't have to climb the stile.
No visit to Low Fell is complete without visiting the old Scots Pine.
The Foulsyke group of houses below enjoy one of the best views in the Lakes.
They can look directly across at Grasmoor and Whiteless Pike
and have a view all the way down the length of Crummock Water from the front of the buildings.
So we leave Low Fell behind for another day as we cross back into the valley and the farm fields.
[ If you are walking the other way, the painted stone helps with navigation.]
One and a half fields away from tea and scones !
- - - o o o - - -
Technical note: Pictures taken with either Ann's Canon 75 or my Canon G10 digital camera.
Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.
This site best viewed with . . . an interesting local walk from Gary and Sheena's holiday cottage
Previous walk - 22nd February 2010 Non-Arctic Darling Fell
A previous time up here - Sunday 5th July 2009 Low fell with David
Next walk - 28th February 2010 Middle Fell in Wasdale