Getting Serious … or Clive Goes Big!!
Our third full week and apart from the odd shower the weather was dry.
04 April; Scale Force from Buttermere
This waterfall was featured in a BBC programme in early April and as we had received so much rain in the previous few days this seemed a good time to visit. Of course, the rain that had swelled the waterfall also made the approaching paths very wet.
That said, the boggy two hour tramp was worth it. The main path from the village led along the shore of Crummock Water and then turned up the beck leading from the falls. We took a higher but very rocky path which was hard to follow at times. The hard work was worthwhile when we passed through a gate and suddenly saw the waterfall directly above us. It is the highest drop of any falls in Cumbria and well worth the visit. There is also merit in seeing it in winter or spring when there is less vegetation to block your view.
In addition to the falls the surrounding views of Crummock Water and Buttermere are beautiful and we will be returning to that area before long.
05 April; Sca Fell from Wasdale Head
Another day when Julie wanted to work so it was a day when I could go higher and further. There are four peaks in England higher than 3,000 feet and we have climbed three of them. The missing summit was Sca Fell so it was time to complete the set.
Hardened walkers will ascend via Lords Rake, often to or from Scafell Pike. Others will walk from Eskdale. My priority was to ascend the quickest and safest route within my capabilities so I climbed from Wasdale Head looking for a path up from the coffin route towards Eskdale. I could not identify the path from the map so I followed the track up to a boggy plateau and then made my way across the fell to eventually find the path from Burnmoor Tarn.
It was still Easter holiday for many schools and there were a number of cars in the car park with walkers setting off for Scafell Pike. None went my way and from the moment I left the car park until I returned over four hours later I did not meet a single person.
I haven’t included a photo of the summit as frankly, it was very misty and not a lot to see.
07 April; Great Borne, Starling Dodd and Little Dodd
I parked at Whins on the road from Ennerdale Bridge to Bowness Knott and climbed up a wet path towards Floutern Tarn. At the fence I followed the steep path up Great Borne in ever gathering mist, reaching the top in thick fog. I paused at the shelter for a sandwich and the mist eased so I decided to continue to Starling Dodd and hopefully to then find my way down to Ennerdale.
There was quite a contrast between the two peaks. Great Borne has the Herdus plateau and a lovely rocky summit whereas Starling Dodd is a great grassy dome. By the time I reached Starling Dodd the skies were clear and there were wonderful views of Ennerdale to the south and Crummock Water to the north. A real treat.
Seeing that Red Pike was again covered in mist I climbed down to Little Dodd and then found a weak path alongside the beck which took me down to Gillerthwaite and the four mile slog back along the road to Whins.
09 April; Whoap and Lank Rigg
From my background reading and from the map I was not expecting much from Lank Rigg but as it is the closest Wainwright to our house it had to be done.
We parked on the Cold Fell Road on a sunny morning with just the occasional fluffy cloud. The track was wet and when we reached the ford at the base of Whoap the water was too high to cross without getting seriously wet. We followed the beck along the steep gully towards Black Pots until it narrowed enough for us to jump across. We then climbed up the fell until we found the main path near the top. There were good views all round with an easy walk round the ridge and up to the top of Lank Rigg. Contrary to Wainwright’s expectations we did meet someone up there.
The views were excellent. To the north east there were the fells across Ennerdale, to the east we saw the snow covered central fells around Pillar and to the south and west we saw the west Cumbrian plain and our adopted home town of Egremont.
We retraced our steps to the ridge where we stopped for lunch prior to a descent along the side of the valley. By this time the ford had eased a little so we walked across bare footed, resting after to dry our feet in the sun. A lovely day’s walk.
Next time, more fells and a coastal walk.