Skiddaw in Snow

Name of walk Skiddaw in Snow
Date of walk 2010-11-10

Snow had fallen on the higher fells on Monday night, so on Wednesday I drove to the Latrigg car park with Ged and Kas to climb Lonscale (2344ft), Skiddaw Little Man (2837ft), Skiddaw (3053ft) and Bakestall (2208ft) returning on the Cumbria Way track via Skiddaw House through the Back o’ Skiddaw. A walk of 12 miles.

01

Today we had a break from the rain and gales of recent days and it was a blue sky sunny day! From the Hawell Monument looking up Jenkins Hill. Kas is eager to get going and shoots on ahead sniffing out the route!

02

Looking across Keswick and Derwent Water to the North Western Fells

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No snow on Catbells

04

We turned off the main path to take the hill up to the Lonscale Fell path. It was warm in the sunshine. Ged with Skiddaw behind him

05

Lonscale summit with Blencathra behind, we then head for the minor peak ahead left, and the views out

06

07

The Back o' Skiddaw. The map labels this as Skiddaw Forest, but the only trees to be seen are around the isolated Skiddaw House, centre right. Great Calva is back right with Knott behind. Bakestall far left.

08

A sheer drop on the edge of Lonscale. Looking down to our return route and Glenderaterra Beck and across at Blencathra

09

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11

Heading up to the first cairn.

12

Looking back to pointy Lonscale Fell from the first cairn

13

Heading up to Skiddaw Little Man.

14

These ladies were from Scotland and doing their first ascent of Skiddaw. Great views across to Clough Head and the Dodds and to Loadpot Hill in the distance

15

Looking to Carlside and Ullock Pike

16

A close up with the wind turbines of the Solway Firth behind Ullock Pike and Longside Edge, and snow on the Scottish Hills too!

17

The cold had started to bite, so back on with the coat and gloves and I also put on my microspikes for a safer descent. Ged hadn`t brought his as he had not realised it had snowed....D'oh! On the way down his backside soon had a sharp reminder that it had!

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Easy to tell which way the wind had been blowing!

19

Looking back up to Skiddaw Little Man.

20

Kas, me and my trusty microspikes

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Walking along the summit ridge. A popular place to be today!

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It was lunchtime so there were lots of people sitting in the numerous shelters

25

Looking down Bassenthwaite Lake

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Looking back at our route from Lonscale Fell, mid left, and out to the Hellvellyn range

27

Close up

29

Looking back up to Skiddaw.

30

Heading down to Bakestall. Great Cockup and the Uldale Fells ahead.

31

Bakestall summit cairn. We headed down the steep side of Birkett Edge to the Cumbria Way path, first taking a look at the rapids leading to Whitewater Dash Falls

32

From the Cumbria Way Path looking at the Back o' Blencathra. We did think of climbing Great Calva too (just to our left), but it would mean returning in the dark so we left it for another day. We stopped along here on the rocks for a late lunch in the last of the sunshine, before heading into the shade of Skiddaw.

33

Skiddaw House on the horizon.

34

Skiddaw House

35

It is quite a long track, but easy walking. Looking back at Great Calva as we head up the path around Lonscale Fell side.

36

The track keeps its height and gives good views across to High Rigg and Tewit Tarn, but it was four o'clock and we had started to lose light. It would be dark in 30 minutes

37

The clouds had come in and the sun had started to set as we take the track back towards the car park. Gales and rain were forecast tonight.

There was one final awkward bit where we had to cross a flooded stream, which I would not have wanted to do in the dark, but managable in half light. We got back to the car after six hours and ten minutes. We gave Latrigg summit a miss as it was now dark!
It was wonderful to do the first snow walk of the season and on such a glorious day!
Jo.
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