Seathwaite Fell in Snow

Name of walk Seathwaite Fell in Snow
Date of walk 2017-03-26
Distance walked (miles) 8
Duration of walk 6 hours 50 minutes
Weather Blue skies and sunshine
Peaks on walk Seathwaite Fell
Walked with Brendan
Parking Road side at Seathwaite

On Saturday Brendan and I drove to Seathwaite in Borrowdale to walk up Seathwaite Fell and visit Styhead Tarn on the route back. The walk would be about 7 miles. I recently had a corticosteroid injection in my knee joint and it is now much less painful than it had been of late, so I could test it out on a multi terrain walk. I also have some new Meindl boots, so it will be a good test for them too!  The weather was glorious so we stopped off at a few places on our way.

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Looking out towards the boat house on Coniston Water.

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Yew Tree Tarn with Holme Fell behind. Left click to enlarge, click again to return.

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Skiddaw from Derwent Water.

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The world and his wife were in Borrowdale this morning. We had to park a long way down the road.

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We walk through the farm, which has toilets, and then the view opens up. Seathwaite Fell on the right.

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Taylor Gill Force on the right.

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There is a route up this way, I have used it before, but it is a scramble.

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Approaching Stockley Bridge. The route takes you to the right of the fell.

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View back down Borrowdale.

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Spies are everywhere!

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We reach a small gill coming down off the fell side, there is a small cairn here. Here we leave the main path and the endless crowds and head up the fell. The north summit is directly above us. The route up is steep, but it saves a long circuitous walk that we would need to repeat on the way back anyway. The route up gives us great views down the valley.

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The steepness of the terrain is evident. Once into the snowline we wear microspikes.

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Behind Brendan is the col between Base Brown and Green Gable.

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I'm heading right, peeking out left is the summit of Glaramara.

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One of the many small tarns on the fell.

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Brendan is a long way in the distance.

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I sit on the summit cairn rocks and wait for Brendan to appear. It is really warm and the heat is reflecting off the snow. There is no breeze and it feels like a summer's day. I discarded my fleece at Stockley Bridge, and I'm rather glad I decided against wearing my thermal trousers! I get out my sunglasses to protect my eyes from the glare. One chap joins us on the summit, he has come up the same way and appears in my panorama.

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Left click to enlarge click again to return. From left to right is Glaramara, Allan Crags, Esk Pike, Great End, Scafell Pike and Lingmell.

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Great End, and Scafell Pike.

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Me on the north summit. We set off for the south summit.

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Great Gable and Green Gable.

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The summit of Seathwaite Fell is very undulating. The snow means that there are no grassy paths visible, but there are footprints of a previous walker which are heading in the right direction. We follow these as then we can tell how deep the snow is.

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View back to the north summit.

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Brendan spots the world and his wife now at Esk Hause.

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Esk Pike on the left with lots of people on the horizon.

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....and in close up. We definitely chose the quietest fell to visit!

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We pass several more tarns.

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Close up of Derwent Water.

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Looking into Wasdale from another view point. Lingmell on the left. A small bit of Styhead Tarn is visible on the right.

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Brendan has had enough of the delights of Seathwaite Fell's undulations so I leave him with the ruck sacks and I head up to the south summit by myself. The south summit is 100ft higher than the north, but the north summit is still considered to be the summit. Either way I'm doing both!

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On the South summit.

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It looks pretty much like the north summit!

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Great Gable and Green Gable, I head back down to Brendan and then we weave our way down the fell side.

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We are heading for the crossing point at the top of the ravine. The path down to Sty Head is on the other side.

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I reach the gill. We cross virgin snow which thankfully was not deep, but still hard work.

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Styhead Tarn below on the left.

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Looking up the gill from the crossing point. This leads up to Sprinkling Tarn and Esk Hause. We refill our water bottles. It has been hot work!

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We head down the left side of the gill.

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Great Gable, Green Gable and Styhead Tarn.

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We could see people swimming in the tarn!

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Now below the snow line we remove our microspikes and I eat my lunch. Brendan had his while I went up the south summit.

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Seathwaite Fell and its reflection.

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Looking across to Great End and Scafell Pike. Superb reflections!

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Two photo panorama. Left click to enlarge click again to return.

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Same view from the outflow.

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We head back down.

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It is still a long way back, but a pleasant walk in the sunshine. I don't put my fleece on until Stockley Bridge where the return walk is in the shade.

An excellent walk! With all the meandering we did on the summit my GPS said the walk was eight miles. It took us six hours and fifty minutes. My knee held up pretty well. I did the descent back from Sty Head Tarn very slowly, relying heavily on my stick, but with only minor discomfort. My new Meindl boots from George Fisher were extremely comfortable, and unlike my other two pairs (Brasher and Hi-tec), genuinely waterproof! No more wringing out wet socks!

Jo.

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