Base Brown to Fleetwith Pike with Father John

Name of walk Base Brown to Fleetwith Pike with Father John
Date of walk 2013-08-14
Distance walked (miles) 12
Duration of walk 7 hours 0 minutes
Weather Overcast but warm
Peaks on walk Base Brown, Green Gable, Brandreth, Grey Knotts, Fleetwith Pike
Walked with Fr. John Inglis
Parking Road-side on way to Seathwaite Farm

Yesterday I did another walk with Father John, a priest from the Diocese of Brighton and Arundel that I met three years ago on a mountain, and we kept in touch. He acts as the supply priest for the Keswick Parish for two weeks in August, which also doubles as his holiday. We drove to Seathwaite to climb Base Brown (2120ft), Green Gable (2627ft),
Brandreth (2344ft), Grey Knotts (2287ft) and Fleetwith Pike (2026ft).
We missed out Great Gable as it would have added another hour to the walk. The walk was just under 12 miles long.


The forecast was not looking too good, but these fells were looking far more promising than the southern fells which were shrouded in low cloud as I passed them on the way to Keswick. Seathwaite Farm........


Looking over to Sour Milk Gill, our route up it was on the left of the waterfalls....


Looking towards Seathwaite Fell from the bridge. The slopes of Base Brown on the right.......


The route up contained a small scramble over rock, but nothing difficult....


My turn to climb.


One of the waterfalls of Sour Milk Gill.....


Entering Gillercomb.....


Looking back down Gillercomb.....


View down Borrowdale towards Derwent Water on the left, from the summit of Base Brown.....


Heading for Green Gable with Great Gable behind in the clouds.....


Panorama of the Ennerdale and Buttermere Valleys with our next fell, Brandreth, on the right, from Green Gable summit....


John admiring the view out with Great Gable behind him. The weather was much better than forecast!


Me also at the summit cairn.....


John takes one of me taking the view.


Close up view into Ennerdale. Black Sail Hut on the bottom right, currently being renovated. Kirk Fell and Pillar on the left....


Looking back down the Gillercomb Valley with Base Brown on the right. Sunshine was occasionally breaking through the cloud....


View back up to Green Gable from the start of the climb up to Brandreth......


From Brandreth summit you can now see three lakes. Ennerdale on the left and Buttermere and Crummock Water on the right.......


John heads for Grey Knotts, the rocky outcrop in the far distance......


In the words of one of John's favourite 'Cream' tracks we're "Sitting on Top of The World". We meet two gentlemen on Grey Knotts summit, one of whom takes our photo.....


We head down off Grey Knotts towards the quarries and Fleetwith Pike summit.......


From here we get a good view of the track leading from the bothy at Dubs Quarry over to Haystacks.....


The remains of the foundations of Drum House, part of the old 1800's tramway's winding house......


The quick way down to the Honister Pass....roughly 7 seconds! Dale Head across from us.....


Fleetwith Pike summit cairn with the view down Buttermere and Crummock Water. Loweswater is also partly in view. The Red Pike, High stile range on the left. Grasmoor far right. While I'm doing this John Is attempting to teach a group of small children to shout "sausages" in unison while he takes their photo. Whatever happened to saying "cheese"?


Their dad now takes one of us with Haystacks behind....thankfully he doesn't require us a to shout out the name of a random processed food!


At the cairn with John's camera


We have a little detour to the edge of Honister Crag and the entrance to the top of the Via Ferrata and some of the old mine workings. Death did NOT occur.....


Old workings....


Looking down on the old mine buildings.


We walked down the mine road to Honister Slate Mine and nipped in to use their facilities.....


Heading down the Pass towards Seatoller. Thinking longingly of the Yew Tree Inn, a large mug of coffee and their walnut cake. It is further than you think! John hopes a bus will pass us so we can cheat and catch it! I must have tired him out more than I had thought! Then John puts his thumb out to hitch a lift from passing 4x4s. We just get smiled at, they don't think we're serious! Maybe we need to try showing a bit of leg? That's John, not me!! Suffice to say we ended up walking! I told him he should have worn shorts! When we get to Seatoller the Inn is closed!!!!! We continue walking along the Seathwaite road back to my car......


John manages to hitch a lift from a passing lorry! Plenty of room for two walkers, their rucksacks and poles, in the back! But getting in required some brute force!


The scenery whizzes past. That's a mile saved! John's sheer relief is apparent!


Amused in the back of the lorry!


One minute I'm a stoic walker, the next I'm a cheating hitchhiker! Talk about being led into temptation! It wasn't half fun though!! I put the guilt-trip on hold and we sought out much needed sustenance in the form of coffee and walnut cake from a farm cafe, on the drive back to Keswick. John still hasn't learnt to put away his toys after playing with them!

The walk took us 7hrs.
But the shame will last a lifetime!

Another excellent day, I’m glad the weather held and we got all those superb views!

Brendan and I are doing a spot of shopping in Keswick and walking up Latrigg on Saturday, so we will call in for a cuppa at the Presbytery before attending John’s 5pm Mass.
He is travelling back to darkest Surrey on Sunday evening, and is probably looking forward to having a well earned rest!