Great Calva to Great Cockup

Name of walk Great Calva to Great Cockup
Date of walk 2016-05-12
Distance walked (miles) 12
Duration of walk 7 hours 52 minutes
Weather Sunshine, but windy
Peaks on walk Great Calva, Knott, Great Sca Fell, Little Sca Fell, Meal Fell, Great Cockup, Little Cockup.
Walked with Ged and blind Kas
Parking Peter House Farm, Orthwaite.

The A591 between Grasmere and Keswick reopened yesterday after six months, so no more detours via the Kirkstone Pass and Dockray to reach the fells on the other side. Today we would drive over Dunmail Raise to reach Peter House Farm near Orthwaite and climb up Great Calva and Knott. Then on to the Uldale Fells, Great Sca Fell, Little Sca Fell, Meal Fell and finally Great Cockup and Little Cockup, which never fails to get a smirk! A walk of 12 miles.


Mathilde, designed by Rebecca Heaton Cooper, outside the Swan Hotel, Grasmere. One of sixty sponsored Herdwick sheep that are part of the 'go herdwick' Calvert Trust Public Art Trail. Unfortunately I am still trying to lay my hands on a Trail Map. No one has deemed either Barrow or Ulverston as worthy enough to sell them.


We park at Peter House Farm and join the Cumbria Way to the Back O' Skiddaw. It is very hazy this morning. View up to Whitewater Dash Waterfall with the slopes of Great Calva on the left and Bakestall on the right.


I zoom in on Dash Falls, but it is like peering through smoke.


The valley view back north showing the long walk up, is clear by comparison. Binsey on the horizon.


It is a wide, easy path but still quite a way until you reach this point, a break in the heather which contains the route up towards Great Calva. Skiddaw House has been in view for some time, but any attempt to turn off early for Great Calva would be very hard going. Kas gets a drink before we head up. This route is best attempted after a dry spell, as it is usually very boggy.


A view back to Skiddaw from the walk up. It is desolate and isolated.....wonderful!


Lonscale Fell behind Ged. Thirlmere can be seen with the naked eye.


The wind is very strong and cooling, but the sunken shelter faces the sun and with the wooden plank seating makes for an excellent sun trap. GPS says 3.84 miles to Great Calva summit.


Seat with a view. The slopes of Blencathra on the left.


The very hazy view to Thirlmere.


The hazy view down to Skiddaw House Youth Hostel.


Looking across to Knott, our next summit, and down to Wiley Gill.


Looking down to the River Caldew.


We head along the fence line.


We detour to one of the small tarns on Great Calva for Kas to get a drink.


We then head for the col and the opportunity to get out of the wind,


Great Calva on the right from the walk up to Knott.


Time for a rest before the final push. It is not windy close to the ground.


Kas is sitting up and his ears are being blown back by the wind! Our route down from Great Calva behind him.


Knott summit with High Pike and Carrock Fell behind.


It is blowing a gale! The sunglasses are for protection from the wind.


Close up of Lingy Hut on Lingy Hill, a bothy in between High Pike and Knott. I was last there nearly two years ago with Fr. John. A garden shed in the middle of nowhere!


Lingy Hut disappears into the moorland below High Pike and Carrock Fell.


Heading for Great Sca Fell.


Empty is the word I would use to describe the Uldale Fells.


Great Sca Fell summit.


Little Sca Fell summit. Overwater and Binsey in the distance.


View to Lowthwaite Fell and Longlands Fell with Brae Fell off right. No time to walk these today.


We head for Meal Fell. Great Cockup is behind it, Burn Tod on the left.


There is still little respite from the wind.



There is a shelter on Meal Fell


Meal Fell summit. We head for the shelter.


The wind is coming from the east so we have to sit outside on the west side with a view to Great Cockup.


The sheep disapprove of Kas.


Heading down to Trusmadoor, then it is straight up Great Cockup.


We detour to Burn Tod Gill, Kas can get a drink and I can cool off my aching feet before our final ascent.


Looking back to Meal Fell, Little and Great Sca Fell from the route up to Great Cockup.


Kas on Great Cockup with Skiddaw behind him.


Kas and me with Bassenthwaite Lake behind us.


Looking to Binsey and Overwater. We head down from Great Cockup to Little Cockup.....that's one cockup after another!


A Grouse Butt. There are a line of them on the fellside a bit further up.


Looking across at our morning route up towards Dash Falls. The haze has now gone.


We head off down the track that eventually reaches the road.


The view is very clear now!


We walk back towards Peter House Farm on the road.


Some nice views back.


Sheep and lambs on the lower pastures. This ewe needs a haircut!


Final view to this morning's route before we reach my car.


I stop at the Sawmill Tearoom at Dodd Wood on the way back. It was 6pm but they shut at 5pm, they were also shut this morning when we drove past. They are one of the designated sellers of 'go herdwick' Trail maps, so my efforts to buy one are thwarted again! I console myself with Amazing Grace by Debra Esterhuizen.


Flo, by Debby Akam, outside the King's Head.

A long but easy walk, which took us just under eight hours. Just a pity it was so incredibly windy, as out of the wind it was very warm. I suppose we should really be thankful that it wasn’t raining or shrouded in hill fog. I guess there is no pleasing some people!

St. James’ Tower are doing a Bell Ringers’ Walk from Brathay to Hawkshead on Saturday, which includes sailing to Wray Castle from Waterhead. Apparently Windermere Cruises sell ‘go herdwick’ trail maps. So I hope I will be lucky enough to buy one then! There may even be ‘Herdwicks’ in Hawkshead! 🙂