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" Low Fell and the First Snow "
Date & start time: Saturday 21st November 2015 midday start.
Location of Start : The red phone box, Loweswater , Cumbria, Uk ( NY 143 211 )
Places visited : Thackthwaite, Low Fell, Low Fell southern top, Foulsyke and home.
Walk details : 3.3 mls, 1250 ft of ascent, 3 hours including lunch.
Highest point : Low Fell, 1375 ft - 423 mtrs.
Walked with : Paula and Sue, Tom and Abigail, Ann and our dogs, Harry and Dylan.
Weather : Lovely winter sunshine after the snow clears the air.
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The first snow of the winter fell last night
and our daughter who is up with the grandchildren suggests a Low Fell walk.
With clear visibility and a little snow on the top, Low Fell was a great place to be to get those all round, winter views.
The story starts the night before.
Around midnight it cleared and the moon came out on what was a rather cold, damp evening.
Before heading to bed I stepped out with the camera to see the views
and sure enough, there was the first snow of Winter on the tops of the high fells.
[ a passing aircraft appears like a shooting start in this ten second exposure ]
In the morning all is revealed.
The sun was up and the skies clear . . .
. . . it was just topping out over Rannerdale to reveal the snow on the top of all the fells.
A while later, with the bags packed and a small flask for lunch we were ready for a walk.
Low Fell was the request . . . starting with a group photo at Thackthwaite (taken on my camera by a kindly fellow walker).
Tom, Abi, Sue, Paula, Ann and myself . . . the boys, Al and Mark, were out on a cycle tour to the coast and back.
As we walk up through the fields the view opens out again.
Abi is intrigued by a tree stump . . . it blew down in the gales eleven years ago now but is still alive.
The snow is well and truly settled on Skiddaw, even Lord's Seat has a reasonable covering.
Looking around, that's Ladyside Pike dressed in white, plus the almost saddleback shape of Hopegill Head summit.
The foreground peak with the diagonal white line is Dodd of the Whiteside ridge.
At the apparent head of our valley
the fells of Haystacks, Great Gable, Scafell Pike and Kirk Fell almost blend together.
A wider view as we leave the fell gate behind and head up the curved track onto Low Fell.
This is an old footpath, possible a coffin route to the old Mosser Church.
It zig-zags at the head of the valley as we draw level with Fellbarrow on the opposite side.
Level ground again as we reach the top gate close to an old sheep fold.
Here's looking at you . . . (note that diagonal line up Dodd again).
I did stop to catch a non-summit view however . . . the first snow on Low Fell.
Zooming in on Crummock and the high fells.
. . . and on the summit party as they made their way along the path.
Over one of several stiles along the path.
The stile is easy, the dog gate hopeless for larger dogs due to a wrongly positioned fence wire.
The final steep ascent towards the summit.
. . . and we are there . . . on top of Low fell.
Paula and family plus Sue, ourselves and the two dogs.
Hang on . . . we seemed to have gained one from somewhere !
'Oscar' and his owners Jess and Will were walking the ridge too and we happened to meet at the highest point.
It's lunchtime . . . so we find a sheltered spot for lunch away from the cool north western breeze.
"Nice hat" Thomas . . . "Anything for me ?" says Dylan
Oh yes . . . and a third from Ann of our two companions.
We ate on the grass bank on the distance and one stile later we are nearing the southern summit.
Ann looks back at along the ridge and at snow covered Skiddaw in the distance.
South summit rocks and a white-Whiteside.
A classic summit photo, this time at the south summit cairn . . . everyone wrapped up against the cold wind.
The path leads onward and downward towards the viewpoint at the end.
I hang back to catch a wider view of the Buttermere Valley.
This is the cairn we can just make out from our kitchen window, far below.
Harry and Dylan at the snow-peppered cairn.
Ann contemplates the view as we start our way down the steep southern end of Low Fell.
There is a path but it is sometimes difficult to find.
Tom hangs back to check out the rocks . . . once the dogs have finished posing.
Tom is sitting an exam in Geology later this week once he gets home.
Whichever way, the path you are on will lead you around or down to the Scots Pine.
Looking down on Godferhead, Foulsyke, Wood End, the Vicarage
and our cottage at the end of the central curved wall.
As we descend further, the high fells start to slide down behind the trees of Whinny Ridding Woods.
A last view of Grasmoor's top until we clear the trees once again.
The oak tree at the gate has remarkably held onto a lot of its leaves despite the recent gales.
It provides some bright autumnal colours to the valley.
This is where the horses are today . . . lower down, out of that cold breeze.
A final photo of one of our local farmers preparing his flock for the start of the new farming year.
It's time to put the tups to the ewes and start the farming cycle all over again.
- - - o o o - - -
Technical note: Pictures taken with either Ann's Canon Sureshot SX220, my Canon 1100D Digital SLR or Paula's iPhone.
Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.
This site best viewed with . . . got to be that first snow of Winter.
Previous event - 18th November 2015 - Vale of Lorton First Responders
A previous time up here - 28th September 2013 - Low Fell in the Sunshine
Next Walk - 25th November 2015 - Holme Woods with Mary ( yet to be published )