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" Low Fell with the Graysons "
Date & start time: Monday 15th April, 2019. 10.30 am start.
Location of Start : Thackthwaite Village, Cumbria, Uk ( NY 149 238 )
Places visited : Low Fell and the southern viewpoint, the Pine Tree and The Kirkstile.
Walk details : 3.5 mls, 1275 ft of ascent, 2 hours 30 mins.
Highest point : Low Fell, 1387 ft - 423m.
Walked with : John and Richard, Ann and our dogs Dylan and Dougal.
Weather : Sunny but very hazy, overcast toward the end. Very, very windy on top.
© Crown copyright. All rights reserved. Licence number PU 100034184.
The cool, south easterly breeze is still with us, in fact it was considerably stronger at altitude as we found out on our walk along Low Fell today.
John and his son Richard suggested the fell walk earlier in the month so we took an extra layer today in case we had to wrap up warmly.
An earl-ish start for the four of us . . . with the aim of relaxing together over lunch in the Kirkstile.
John and his son were on holiday in the Lakes, staying in Keswick, and hadn't climbed Low fell before.
We parked in Thackthwaite for this classic local linear walk.
The village was looking smart with a relatively new fence and a wealth of daffodils lining the road.
The walk really started as we enter the lane, adjacent to Thackthwaite House and the old Galloway Farm.
It could well be an old coffin route around to the old Church in Mosser, except that there's no graveyard or cemetery there.
Whatever its history, nowadays the lane gives access to the fields and woodland above the village for the farmers,
but is probably more often used by walkers to gain access to the slopes of Fellbarrow and Low Fell.
The fell gate . . . I've never known a gate that has suffered more damage than this one.
Every time we visit it seems that one part of it or another is falling apart.
Another object that has fallen apart is the old ash tree.
It tried to pollard itself, growing a new shoot from the damaged trunk, but I think even the one it managed is lost to decay.
A group of larch are mentioned locally on the O.S. 1:25k map.
This line of trees is certainly old. Lets hope they survive the larch disease that has attacked the Whinlatter trees.
It's hats and gloves on . . . and head down into the wind as we reach the top of the ridge.
[ No wonder it is windy . . . someone opened the gate !]
The southern airflow has brought a thick haze . . . which could be pollution from the distant cities
or dust from the Sahara brought over on this active European high pressure weather system.
Our route continues on along the ridge . . . but there's a major "up" as we start onto the higher ground of Low Fell itself.
No gate here and it is still windy !
John and Richard stride out towards the summit,
any tucks or folds of material on their trousers and jackets flapping like mad in the gale.
A false summit . . . at least we've a nice view of Crummock Water to look at while we climb to the real one.
The strength of the wind can be judged now . . . by checking how bad a hair day they are experiencing.
On the Harry and Bethan Beaufort Scale I make it a six ! [ Scroll down below the weather links.]
I was about to take a picture of the others arriving at the summit, but we met a fellow walker who offered to take this full group photo for us.
It turns out that she was staying in Gillerthwaite (self-catering) cottage in the village and has been our neighbour for the week.
She was not being anti-social . . . sensibly she chose not to stay too long in the crazy summit wind.
The end of the ridge and I stop for a photo down to Loweswater and Darling Fell to the right.
Darling Fell . . . and the haze continues north to obscure the Solway coast.
The map shows a public right of way from our ridge straight down and straight up the other side . . . I think the true path journeys more circuitously.
The southern summit . . . either the wind has dropped or this end of the fell is more protected.
The dogs are first to the viewpoint cairn . . . Dylan knows the way as he's been here before, Dougal hasn't.
Just a short walk home now . . . down there and across a few fields.
The viewpoint cairn must have been deflecting the wind from the top summit as it is blowing a gale here again.
The dogs shelter behind me for protection from the wind . . . I have my Buff neck scarf over my woollen hat just to keep it in place.
If nothing else, this windy walk will be a memorable one for John, Richard and ourselves !
The ground levels out, the wind levels out and we hop over the fence to explore further.
Below us, on a level bluff of land, is a feature we wanted to show our visitors.
There are the remains of a beautifully circular sheep fold on the fell side ahead.
It has seen better days . . . but the wall can still be traced round the complete circle.
They say that circular churches are good because the devil can't find a corner to hide in.
Circular sheepfolds must be a problem because you can't find a corner to trap a sheep in.
We descend another hundred or so feet and reach the Lonesome Pine.
John expressed a wish to visit this . . . a wish we were more than happy to fulfill.
Job nearly done, fell ticked off, tree ticked off . . . all that remains is to walk back to the cottage.
We reach the top road at the exit of Wood End driveway . . . just two fields to go and we we're home.
The table is booked for 1.30 pm lunch at the Kirkstile Inn in twenty minutes time.
We leave the dogs at home resting as we change shoes and walk the short distance up the road !
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A perfect way to end the walk . . . and the wind has dropped so we can continue our chat quietly
. . . WITHOUT SHOUTING !
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Technical note: Pictures taken with either Ann's Panasonic Lumix TZ60, or my Panasonic Lumix Gx8 Camera.
Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.
This site best viewed with . . . a lift back for the car as they make their way back to Keswick.
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Previous walk - 14th April - St Bees Head with Pat
A previous time up here - 23rd March 2010 Mellbreak with John Grayson
John and Richards pictorial log for their week in the Lakes can be found here
Next walk - 17th April - Paddock and Garden