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Parlick, Fair Snape Fell & the Bleasdale Circle

07.13.14

Posted by paul  |  4 Comments »

Today’s forecast was unusual for mid July ranging with drizzle & mostly low cloud that wouldn’t lift until midday, instead of waiting for the cloud to lift I thought about a short walk that actually turned into a longer one on the Bowland Fells which are less than an hours drive from Wigan where out of the window came mid morning – it had started to clear up rather nicely.

Although I had set my sights on a short walk over to Ullscarth from Wythburn & the fact that yes, I had a feeling of almost betrayal to my beloved Lakeland fells I thought I could kill two birds with one stone & still come away feeling like I’d had a long walk which was exactly what I got.

It all started at Fell Foot Farm, just gone eleven am.

 

ASCENT: 1,560 Feet  – 488 Meters

WAINWRIGHTS: NA

SUMMITS VISITED: 3, Parlick – Fair Snape Fell – Wolf Fell

WEATHER: Overcast With Low Some Low Cloud, Highs of 18°C Lows of 16°C

PARKING: Road Side Parking, Fell Foot Farm

AREA: Chipping, Forest of Bowland

MILES: 8.7

WALKING WITH: On My Own

ORDNANCE SURVEY: OL41

TIME TAKEN: 3 Hours 50 Minutes

ROUTE: Fell Foot – Parlick – Nicks Chair – Fair Snape Fell (Paddy’s Pole) – Holme House Fell – Friendsdale Head – Whinny Bank – Hazlehurst Farm – Admarsh Barn Farm – Vicarage Farm – Bleasdale Circle – St Eadmer’s Church – Bleasdale – Blindhurst Farm – Fell Foot

 

Map 1Map 2

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Parlick taken shortly after passing through Fell Foot Farm 11:06am 16°C

I left Wigan around 09:45am not before stocking up on a Meal Deal at my local Coop seeing that as today, I’ve come pretty un-prepared, but at least I’d had my coffee.

A long narrow lane leads you all the way to Fell Foot Farm after leaving my car a short distance behind at the aptly located parking spaces that I thought I may have trouble parking in, to my surprise there was more spaces left, even after I had left my car.

In a field near by Gliders take off from where an orange wind sock blows with the wind, I don’t just mean those Gliders where you take off from the top of a hill beneath a canopy, I mean full size things with Wings & Cockpits, they were pretty huge & very silent.

Despite the sun it’s pretty snappy so I put my Montane Soft Shell on over my T Shirt before locking the car & making my way towards Fell Foot Farm.

Already, I am regretting the decision to wear the jacket.

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Extensive views over Fell Foot & Chipping towards Longridge Fell & a distant Pendle Hill.

I hadn’t been walking long at all, in fact you can clearly see the car parking spaces dotted along the lane when I started to feel the heat even through a chilly wind, the best decision here was to  take my jacket off & pack it away but I was far too stubborn or lazy to do that, instead I stayed uncomfortable for the next fifteen minutes or so whilst I took in the steep path that flanks the fell side before getting steadily steeper once a direct line to the summit is reached, by means of a wire fence.

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Parlick summit & shelter.

After a short but steep pull I soon arrived at the summit where I was joined by a group of walkers admiring the views, I passed on my good morning & received a jolly good morning in return.

Here the views opened up extensively all over Lancashire towards East Yorkshire & the Fylde Coast but that cloud, although not as grey & murky as of the last couple of hours did lie low as it sped across the sky carried by a strong wind that also gusted across the summits.

I only realised afterwards that the guy in black is wearing a hat, I couldn’t blame him, it was here I thought that maybe keeping the jacket on wouldn’t be a bad decision after all.

Speaking of cold conditions the last time I was here it was -8°C with 4ft of snow drifts, I had never seen the ridge towards Fair Snape Fell look so inviting as it did right about now.

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Fair Snape Fell shortly after leaving Parlick summit.

I was in my element as I strode to take in the short ridge in-between Parlick & Fair Snape Fell all the while watching as the grasses changed colour each time the sun was obscured by cloud, it is mid July but a tiny piece of me thinks that this could be mistaken for Autumn as the wind pinched at my cheeks & ears.

I swore for one moment, I billowed warm air into cupped fist.

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Fair Snape Fell.

The group that I greeted me back on Parlick were at times catching up with me so much so over the wind I could hear the topic of conversation although I couldn’t tell you what about.

Here the ridge takes a slight dip unseen from both Parlick & Fair Snape Fell, it’s at this point do I pass through the wooden gate to take on the more obvious path seen on the left of the wall, an action I had mistook to do when back here last February causing me to plough through deep snow that had drifted against the stone wall, once bitten twice shy…even though it’s touching on 16°C !

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Fair Snape Fell seen with the Bleasdale valley.

My route will see me pass through the picturesque valley of Bleasdale after descending Whinny Bank which can be seen dropping down into the far centre part of the valley/photo.

Negotiating the numerous farms & lanes was a tougher challenge than first thought which I’ll get to later in the walk.

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Here, looking back on Parlick shortly before arriving at Fair Snape Fell.

The group who had been trailing me had long gone by the time I reached the summit path beneath Fair Snape Fell, here the weather also took a slight turn for the worse as it started to cloud over towards the north, looking south however, the sun still shone brightly adding a generous amount of colour to the grasses across the ridge.

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Parlick taken from Fair Snape Fell / Paddy’s Pole.

I soon arrived at a deserted Fair Snape Fell after watching two walkers leave the summit & head out east towards Saddle Fell, then out of view as I negotiated the peat hags common to this area of the Bowland Fells.

The cloud seemed to be getting darker & the wind stronger & once more I was reminded that even at just a little height above the Valleys the temperature can drop enough to make me think I was glad to have kept the jacket.

After taking a few photos from the shelter I took the short walk over towards the summit Trig Point where the blue skies where slowly fading to grey.

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Fair Snape Fell summit Trig Point.

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Wolf Fell is out there somewhere.

After taking just the one photo of the Trig Point I too headed East via a faint stony grass path that also lead me to a halt once I reached the peat hags. What looked like a farmer dressed in a wax oil jacket held his collie, over the wind I heard an aye,aye, I replied morning tipping my head at the same time pretending I knew exactly where the peat hags were taking me, when in actual fact I was mapping my route towards Wolf Fell by eye alone.

I clambered over a section of peat of around 5ft in height before spotting a direct path towards Wolf Fell over towards my left which I took; altogether feeling that I’d ‘been lost’ for just a little while.

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Wolf Fell summit Cairn.

Once above the hags I was able to spot a fence just a few hundred yards away running north to south, this surely was the path that would traverse me over Holmes House Fell towards the head of Friendsdale Head valley…

A mouthful I know.

The summit stake quickly appeared through an array of more peat hags as a procession of carefully positioned stepping stones ran over the damp peat beneath my boots, the last time I was here volunteers from the National Trust were profiling the peat hags to more manageable sizes by chopping away at them with Mini Diggers & overall hard labour to try & keep the peat at bay.

It was interesting although a little unsightly to see how they had managed it.

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Peat Hag profiling using wire mesh bands.

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En-route to my Holmes House Fell.

After crossing more stepping stones my path took me through the highest of the peat hags that were more than shoulder height, here I had lost all of my surrounding views more so as the cloud began to steadily grow thicker only hindered by the odd burst of sunlight trying to streak through.

I’ll be glad once the peat hags are behind me.

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My ridge route across Holmes House Fell.

Garstang & Preston are no more than three miles away as the crow flies but that didn’t stop the isolation I felt while crossing the boggy moorland known as Holmes House Fell which is pretty featureless to state the obvious.

Here I follow the wire fence as way yonder in the distance I spot a small wooden sty situated besides a metal gate which helped with navigation as the cloud rolled in & out.

Other times, the sun would shine again transforming the moorland into an array of colour.

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Whinny Bank from Holmes House Fell during a spell of sunshine.

My route would see me flank Whinny Bank to my left as I descend into the valley of Bleasdale, but that’s in a little while yet.

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Here, looking back on Fair Snape Fell as the cloud rolls in once more.

My ridge crossing wasn’t exactly what I had expected as my path ran its course through wet bog which I guess can only be expected of the area. Here it’s handy to learn to walk over a carpeted swimming pool as oddly as my boots sank into the bog, they always came out bone dry.

A sure sign that the bog here is missing its main ingredient!

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Friendsdale Head.

Through the cloud & mist I spotted what looked like white dots which turned out to be this delightful path that some very thoughtful & kind person had laid to stop us walkers sinking through the quagmire.

By now I had lost visibility & had been walking in the cloud for the last twenty minutes or so until I reached the stepping stones which descended me west towards a distant Hazlehurst Farm, but before all that I had quite a few miles to cover.

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Fair Snape Fell as the sun reappeared.

I thought about taking a direct line to the summit of Whinny Bank but was a little put off by a pathless ascent over yet more boggy ground, instead I took my time whilst I descended the fell as it seemed with each step the sun grew brighter & indeed much warmer.

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Fair Snape Fell seen with a distant Parlick.

My descent took me much longer than I had first initially thought but this didn’t concern me as my views over the valley of Bleasdale, Fair Snape Fell & Parlick were well worth the long wait before reaching the valley floor.

I hadn’t had to use my map until now as I needed to learn my way through the various lonnings & farm paths that would see me through Bleasdale & one particular place that I wanted to visit was that of the Bleasdale Stone Circle, my research had told me that the ancient Stone Circle was found within a small copse of trees not long after passing through Hazlehurst Farm.

Picture the scene…

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Hazlehurst Farm.

No this isn’t the copse of trees that I am looking for, this is Hazlehurst Farm where I stood map in hand…sometimes sideways trying to pick out the location of the Bleasedale Circle amongst half a dozen wooded areas that could have easily been identified as the location of the ancient monument.

What started off as a simple walk was now turning into a map reading course & a good eye for the lay of the land, my map told me that a path ran from the wooded area from where I took this photograph where I would join a lonning towards the next farm situated a miles walk from here.

My problem was I just could not find that footpath.

I strode to the edge of the woods which over looked cropped fields only separated by a wire fence but a faint brook gave my position some clarity so I went for it, my map told me to stick left of the brook which didn’t stop me having to scale a wire fence were to reach it I had to walk through waist high tangled wild grass, here I was to be stung by stinging nettles all up my right leg.

I sure hope that Stone Circle is worth it.

After scaling the wire fence I found myself in a empty field, ahead of me in the distance another metal gate was spotted which I made for, thankfully, as I neared the gate I soon spotted that ‘give away’ orange rope around the gate which if common to walking in the country side meant ‘no right of way through here’ thankfully though, a wooden step lay just off the path where I could scale my next fence before making my way through Admarsh Barn Farm where I succumbed to a little conversation with the farmer as he loaded his quad with a single bale of hay.

Hi’ is this Admarsh Farm? aye he says, end of conversation.

This little tippet of conversation was enough to tell me that the Stone Circle lay just ahead & around the next corner which was flanked heavily by a wooded area.

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Not far now.

I walked for up to three quarters of a mile before arriving at the next farm on the map which was named Vicarage Farm, it was there I spotted the sign post as a sigh of relief left my shoulders!

The sign pointed towards a large wooded gate where a large open field opened out, in it, was the small copse of trees that I had been looking for.

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Parlick seen above Bleasdale seen with the site of The Bleasdale Circle.

I have to say that it has been numerous years since I had to resort to a map as I found myself a little sketchy of my unwary surroundings, seeing that sign post put an end to all that.

It was well past midday & since leaving Wigan I had only eaten my Kellogg’s Crunchy Nut for breakfast – so it was here I decided that once I had explored the Stone Circle, I would sit down & feast on some well earned lunch.

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The Bleasdale Stone Circle.

The Bleasdale Stone Circle was only discovered as late as 1898 but what fascinates me most is that this site which dates back between 1700 BC is that a burial chamber was excavated containing charred remains of human bone which were thought to have been cremated by means of Funeral Pyre.

Inside the grave a small ‘accessory cup’ was also unearthed believed to contain food & drink for the afterlife of the deceased.

The now Stone Circle measures 45 metres in diameter with a mound containing the grave in the centre, the circular objects seen today are replacement ‘stone pillars’ left here after the original timber post had understandably rotten away over the the last centuries.

It is thought that the woodland was planted only after the discovery to protect the ancient site from the elements.

Sitting here in awe of the history of our region just didn’t seem right, it took a while to sink in but surely it did as the shadows of the trees danced across the ancient site there I sat, eating my BLT.

Purely magical & well worth the stinging nettles.

Sooner or later I knew I would have to leave which is what I did after around twenty minutes, after one last look back I passed through a wooden gate that would leave me across the field & back to Vicarage Farm where I would pick up the lane bound for St Eadmer’s Church which was just under a mile away.

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An artist impression of The Bleasdale Circle C/O the Ribchester Museum.

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St Eadmer’s Church, Bleasdale.

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Kerplunk anyone?

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St Eadmer’s Church, Bleasdale.

After taking in the lane from Vicarage Farm I soon arrived at St Eadmer’s Church which is a fine monument & well kept village Church situated in the heart of the valley of Bleasdale. Before reaching the Church grounds I pass two elderly park rangers tucking into their lunches whilst sat on a bench, ‘afternoon I say’

I don’t get a return although not through ignorance, through a full mouth of sandwich.

I press on.

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Parlick with Blindhurst Farm down below.

After leaving St Eadmer’s behind it was back to the map & how I would find my way towards Blindhurst Farm which you may be able to spot just as small out buildings below Parlick, it would seem a pretty simple A to B.

Which couldn’t have been further from the truth.

I first had to leave the tarmac road where you see the trees were I would take a right turn along the edge of a narrow stream, at first my path was faint but became more overcome by long grass the further I walked besides the bank.

After crossing the brook I could see Blindhurst Farm across a large field which I crossed before I gained height steeply towards the farm buildings themselves.

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Blindhurst Farm.

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Blindhurst Cottages found close to the farm.

After passing through the farmyard to the sound of a group of four barking sheep dogs which I only realised sooner rather than later I might add that they where all on the end of steel chains, the dogs barked territorial & didn’t stop until I left the farmyard completely, I think this caused my next navigational error slightly however, when you see how faint the paths were I had to follow & the lack of use they had you may feel a touch of sympathy for me!

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Stumbling across this wooden footbridge.

I scoured the top of the field for a crossing, only learning that there was water flowing through sound only as the long grasses completely covered their courses.

Here I place both hands like a gymnast would as I propelled myself forwards over the nettles & alike before crossing the wall where I was in reach of Fell Foot.

In reach yes, but more field negotiating had to be had.

I appeared to have found myself in a field of cowpats followed by large groups of their owners, I see no way through.

I keep with a stone wall which ran beneath a patch of trees, ahead I spot an open gate but I can’t make a direct route, I have to go around by sticking to the wall carefully negotiating the swill all the while heading for the gate.

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Back at Fell Foot.

After passing through the gate I found myself close to Fell Foot even though I could not see it, ahead all that lay was a short flank of Parlick before a sudden turn revealed Fell Foot & a sea of glorious countryside with views as far as the eye could see.

I wipe the sweat from my brow & with the tiniest of pretence, I pretend the last half hour never happened because nothing could have spoiled my short walk that turned into a rather larger grand day out.

Mardale lll Bell via Lingmell End

07.05.14

Posted by paul  |  10 Comments »

So many factors had got in the way of this walk which was planned all the way back in November 2013, mainly the weather. If both David & myself could cast our way back over the last year at each & every walk we did, with exceptions of the day we walked from Dunmail Raise to Scafell Pike should in actual fact, have been this walk.

This route was one of David’s ‘out of the ordinary’ walks’ a walk that would take in the beauty of the Kentmere Valley through to Kentmere Reservoir where we would then take on the mighty Lingmell End that dominates the head of the Kentmere Valley.

We knew it was going to be a tough one mind…

I’ve often gazed upon the nose of Lingmell End & uttered the words, If anyone’s stupid enough to climb that, they deserve a bloody medal.

It all started at Kentmere Church, in the heart of the Kentmere Valley.

 

ASCENT: 3,100 Feet – 945 Meters

WAINWRIGHTS: 4, Mardale lll Bell – Harter Fell (Mardale) – Kentmere Pike – Shipman Knotts

WEATHER: Cloudy To Start, Overcast With Some Sun, Highs of 12°C Lows of 18°C

PARKING: Roadside Parking, St Cuthbert’s Church, Kentmere

AREA: Far Eastern

MILES 11.3

WALKING WITH: David Hall

ORDNANCE SURVEY: OL5

TIME TAKEN: 7 Hours 5 Minutes

ROUTE: Kentmere – Hartrigg – Kentmere Reservoir – River Kent – Lingmell End – Mardale lll Bell – Nan Bield Pass – Harter Fell (Mardale) – The Knowe – Brown Howe – Kentmere Pike – Shipman Knotts – Longsleddale Pass – High Lane – Kentmere

Wainwright Guidebook Two

Book 2

The Far Eastern Fells

-Mardale Ill Bell

To the west the fell merges gently and dully into High Street, with a fringe of crag throughout on the north, and south linking high ground is a wall of steep rock, Bleathwaite Crag, bounding the silent hollow of Hall Cove, the birthplace of the River Kent. On the south also is the most pronounced shoulder of the fell, Lingmell End, thrusting far into the valley of Kentmere, and from it descends a short spur to the top of Nan Bield Pass.

a.w

 

Map 1Map 2Map 3

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Looking back on St Cuthbert’s Church, Kentmere 08:04am 12°C

We had arranged to meet in Kentmere by the church at 08:00am I arrived ten minutes early to find David already there as he was taking in the views up the valley, I gave a David a quick wave through the windscreen before heading around the corner to find a spot to park the car where I found that a long wheel base mini bus had taken up the spaces of three cars by parking so in considerately, you would have to see it to be believe it.

I wound the window down as David caught up with me, the disbelieve on his face matched mine, luckily enough I managed to park the car besides the Kentmere Institute Building taking care not to sting myself on the nettles as I got out.

David was almost kitted up as all he had to do was lock his car, which just left me to do a quick change of footwear into my boots before locking the car & heading out on the quiet country lanes towards Hartrigg, deep inside Kentmere territory some one hours walk away.

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Passing Scales Farm, Kentmere.

It had rained heavily the previous day & the evidence was all around as we never seemed to be far away from the noise of gushing water. The cloud remained relatively low but we could see a change was on its way as the light strengthened & the skies had distant blues in them.

Through the valley we heard the sound of a quad bike which reached us within no-time shattering the peace about the place although we did get a polite nod from the farmer driving.

We continued through the valley at the same time checking those skies for what was promised to be a fine day, sadly it hadn’t reached us yet.

But it’s coming…

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Hartrigg Farm, Kentmere.

We were well & truly into the Kentmere Valley by the time we passed Hartrigg Farm where we stood a while taking in its location & surrounding country side, almost all of the farms in Lakeland are working farms & evidence of this is the clutter left behind around tatty out buildings but not here. Hartrigg is well maintained & even its out buildings match the standards of the main farm house itself which left both me & David feeling a little jealous.

Hartrigg Farm is a credit to the Valley of Kentmere & indeed all the generations who have lived there.

Time to stop day dreaming, we’d better press on eh.

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Yoke, lll Bell & Froswick as we approach The Reservoir Cottages.

It didn’t feel like we had been walking for almost an hour when we had our first proper views of the lll Bell ridge which were tainted as the remaining cloud lifted from their summits leaving a rather cloudy grey atmosphere.

We soon passed the Reservoir Cottages (seen ahead near the spoil heap) before taking on a gentle path that navigates the base of Steel Rigg where views upon Yoke & Rainsborrow Cove dominated our left flanks.

Once the Cottages were passed we soon had our sights on Kentmere Reservoir & its fast flowing Weir which was heard long before it was seen.

Way over on the other side of the Valley we spot teams of walkers who had oddly left The Nan Bield Pass path above Kentmere Reservoir for a rather odd route beneath Smallthwaite Knotts, judging by the size of the group & the fact they were carrying full kit we could only assume that they were part of the Duke of Edinburgh scheme.

Our only assumption was that they had lost the path somewhere along the way.

Once we reached the Reservoir we finally got to see Lingmell End directly where a route was agreed & plotted by David & myself on which way was the best to ascend. We chose to take on the contour or ‘profile’ of the fell by heading directly up its nose.

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Lingmell End & the top of The Nan Bield Pass taken from Kentmere Reservoir.

After leaving the Weir behind we navigated ourselves around the Reservoir whose narrow path was overcome by water still flowing from the fellside from the previous nights rainfall.

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Here looking back at Kentmere Reservoir & Dam.

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A rather youthful River Kent in Full flow.

The thought of crossing the River Kent never crossed our minds, that was until we reached the point where the Kent flows into the Reservoir. It seems the previous nights rainfall had swollen the River Kent making any crossing un-safe meaning we had to follow the River up stream & look for a safer place to cross.

Easier said than done when crossing any swollen River!

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Searching for a place to cross the River Kent.

David strode on in search of a better & safer place to cross. On any given occasion I have been known to wade through Rivers or Becks & dry off naturally but here, the River Kent simply wouldn’t allow a safe crossing where at times the River looked shallow at one to two feet in depth, would then rise well over three feet towards the middle & far bank.

We had been walking a good while by the time we made the decision that we would simply have to wade through, David suggested we take off our socks and boots, even doing this would still get the bottom of our shorts wet but that was the best offer we had.

We both found suitable ground close to the ‘best spot’ to cross the River by where we then stripped of the socks before tying our boot laces in loops & tying them around our necks, I committed by throwing my walking poles like javelin’s over to the opposite side of the bank before lowing myself down into the freezing cold water.

The water reached knee level almost instantly but we had aimed our sights for the centre of the river where it seemed to shallow out a little towards the opposite bank, coping with the cold fast flowing water was one thing, having nothing on your feet over extremely slippery rock underfoot was another as I struggled for traction making David wait behind me much longer than we both needed of. After quite a lot of silent ouches from myself we soon found ourselves on the bank where David found a large rock to sit by & re-apply the socks & boots, at this point my feet were still in a centimetre of cold grassy water so without hesitation I de shouldered my pack & used it to sit on.

Without really noticing it seemed, the cloud had vanished & the sun had come out.

Wah hey!

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Ill Bell’s north east ridge as the sun came out.

With nothing to dry our feet we sat a few moments to let the sun dry them off as best we could before re-applying socks & boots, the feeling of warm socks over cold feet made the decision to cross barefoot more than worth it, after all we didn’t want to be taking on a steep climb with wet socks.

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Back tracking with Kentmere Reservoir & Rainsborrow Crag seen right.

I took this photo shortly after shouldering pack again which just goes to show the distance we had to travel to make a safe crossing.

We followed the Kent for a short while walking through tall Grass in preparation for the Bracken we knew we had to cross before reaching the base of our ascent.

We encountered the Bracken first thigh high via a faint path that seamlessly lead to nothing where we then had to blaze a trail through ourselves.

Every now & again we would stop to admire the views which took the mind away from the fight with the Bracken.

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Kentmere Reservoir seen with Yoke & Rainsborrow Cove.

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Man puts out plea to find ones legs.

I wouldn’t say that wading through the Bracken was unpleasant because it wasn’t, it was just a means of reaching the next objective after all, however it was a little tiring & most definitely wet with also the odd hole in the ground to look out for.

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Yoke & Ill Bell seen across Kentmere Reservoir.

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Ascent on Lingmell End.

After our encounter with the Bracken we soon reached the base of our ascent which looked far more daunting than what the picture might suggest.

Here we mopped brows before plotting a line up the fell on which to follow seeing as from now on, we were walking pathless.

David set off in good pace closely followed by myself, negotiating the Bracken & Grasses was done once more before we settled at a low point along the ascent seen in the photo where the grass appears a lighter green.

From there the ascent took on a steepness of a new level where at times I found myself walking on my tippy toes with my walking poles high above my shoulders such the steepness of the fell side. The ascent was dotted with unseen sheep dens cut into the fell side which were a nice place to catch your breath back by, but a horrible place to get yourself out of. It seemed best to avoid such places.

Every now & again I would see David stop to catch his breath back or mop his forehead with his trademark hand towel that he keeps between shoulder & pack.

I opted for my own route should it lighten my load but it was no use, David had found the best line & I was soon back on it closely catching David up as he waited for me beneath the nose of the summit.

A joke was shared whilst we both got our breaths back before jointly arriving over the shoulder of the fell to be greeted by a smooth grassy ridge whose grasses where illuminated by a bright sun overhead.

The next two photos where taken during brief rest stops as David trundled on up ahead, I somehow failed to manage an ‘up shot or down shot’ of the ridge as the ascent/descent at times just fell below leaving nothing but a grass shelf to look up or down on.

Averting my eyes towards the Ill Bell ridge however, never failed to get my attentions…

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Yoke, Rainsborrow Cove & The Kentmere Reservoir seen from a brief rest stop along the ascent.

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This time with Ill Bell & Ill Bell’s east ridge.

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Yoke, Ill Bell & Froswick taken from Lingmell End summit cairn.

I didn’t expect to find a cairn at all & was delighted in doing so, here we both took a little time out to take photos & once again, get the breath back.

The views as of late have been something to talk of as David points out the top of The Wrynose Pass & a host of southern fells including the Gables & Scafells.

I however have a niggling pain at the front of my right foot in the same place where the knot from laces is located, I undo my laces to ease a little pressure & redo them this time not crossing the laces around the area but taking the laces straight up & around the back of the boot, this eases the pain but gave less support.

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The top The Nan Bield Pass seen from Lingmoor End stone summit cairn.

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Rewards are plentiful as we head for Mardale Ill Bell.

One of the whole highlights of the day for me was this short ridge walk all the way to Mardale Ill Bell which can be seen as the pointed peak in shadow up ahead.

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Here, looking back along the summit ridge of Lingmoor End towards the Ill Bell ridge.

The weather seemed to change as we headed for Mardale Ill Bell summit as every now & again the sun would disappear behind cloud leaving a rather cool wind about the summit tops.

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High Street taken from Mardale Ill Bell summit.

We had toyed with the idea of heading over to High Street whilst back down in Kentmere but sadly gave it a second glance once the ascent on Lingmell End was behind us, which I was kinda happy about as I have plans for a future walk up High Street in the not too distant future.

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Harter Fell (Mardale) seen shortly after leaving Mardale Ill Bell summit.

We both spent a few moments taking photos from the summit & expecting really to be seeing more than just the two of us given that today is a Saturday in the middle of July we hadn’t come across anyone as of yet.

That all changed as we took in the descent towards Nan Bield Pass when we came across the Duke of Edinburgh youngsters taking a rest shortly after leaving Mardale Ill Bell summit, we pass on our Good Mornings as I find it hard to avoid in asking the leader of the group how they came to leave a perfectly good path whilst traversing above Kentmere Reservoir but, I managed to keep it in as I thought he didn’t want reminding of what could have been a genuine mistake.

But I guess, the kids didn’t let that one go either!

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The stone shelter found at the top of Nan Bield Pass.

We soon found ourselves at top of Nan Bield Pass where we came across a large group of walkers huddled into the shelter, we pass on more good mornings before we take on the next ascent of the day on Harter Fell (Mardale)

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Here, looking back over the stone shelter towards Mardale Ill Bell.

The sun came back out whilst we took on the ascent on Hater Fell (Mardale) leaving a warm feel about the summits once more, the heat would come like the flick of a light switch once the sun disappeared behind cloud as it would almost leave you reaching for an extra layer, then once it came back out again, you was too hot.

Quite a few people we crossed commented about it!

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Haweswater & High Street’s Rough Crag ridge seen as it descends to The Rigg far below.

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Mardale Ill Bell’s east ridge seen with High Street & a distant Kidsty Pike (far right) from our ascent on Harter Fell (Mardale) with Small Water below.

With the sun came colour which illuminated Small Water magically, both David & I studied both the north & east ridge that Mardale Ill Bell has to offer which hopefully will be turned into a future walk sometime soon.

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The Ill Bell ridge seen with Lingmell End seen sharply rising from Kentmere Reservoir below.

Our ascent on Harter Fell was done with great stead seamlessly making towards the summit shoulder in no time at all, below us we spot a couple who are also making their way up the summit but for whatever reason, seem to be rushing.

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Mardale Ill Bell, High Street & Kidsty Pike seen from Harter Fell (Mardale) summit cairn.

By the time we arrived at the summit we were joined by a couple who were just about to leave for Kentmere Pike, we chatted briefly before the couple we had seen below us on our ascent caught us up who all passed on their pleasantries.

It was just no good, the sleeves on my Craghopper shirt had to be rolled down, sunshine or not, I had goosebumps over my arms whilst here.

Yeah I know…man up Paul!

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Looking back across Brown Howe towards Harter Fell shortly before arriving at Kentmere Pike summit.

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Kentmere Pike summit Trig Point & our lunch spot.

We had caught up with one of the couples we had spoke with back on Harter Fell by the time we reached Kentmere Pike summit who were just finishing of their lunches whilst sat on the stone slabs used to hop over the stone wall.

Sorry to disturb your lunch but would you mind if we hop over ‘sorry of course not’ the guy moved his butty box which was perched on one of the stone slabs, after making it over what ensued was nothing short of mayhem as the guy seemed to drop his lunch, its packaging & his map all within a split second ‘the maps blowing away his wife shouts’ all the while I’m handing the guy back floating bits of sandwich bags & what not back at him ‘get the map, get the map’ his wife is still shouting…

David sits down struggling to contain his laughter behind a mouthful of his own sandwich, I however feel a little guilty for perhaps ruining the guys day.

Lunch was great, in fact lunch was better than great & went on much longer than usual due splendid views only interrupted by David’s spotting of a cloud that looked like the south English coast.

Good times!

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Taking on the ridge towards Shipman Knotts.

After packing lunch away we shouldered packs for the last summit of the day in Shipman Knotts which when walking from the direction of Kentmere Pike is mostly downhill before a slight rise to reach the summit.

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The Kentmere Valley from above.

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Shipman Knotts summit.

The sun cast dark shadows across the hill side taking light with it, for some reason here at the summit of Shipman Knotts it felt much colder than any of our previous summits that we had visited today, David decides to take his Weather Meter out which gave a wind speed of 19mph with a temperature of 12.1°C which is really nothing to speak of other than it did feel much cooler than that.

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Here, looking back on Shipman Knotts.

We left the summit of Shipman Knotts by following the stone wall where we passed another couple  making their own ascent at the summit.

Shortly afterwards we branched off the main path right which in essence is just a short cut back down to the Kentmere side of the Longsleddale Pass below, this was done under now scorching afternoon sun as we both commented that it had come an hour to late, but, predicted all the while.

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The Ill Bell ridge from Stile End.

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This time without the zoom.

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The Kentmere Valley with The Ill Bell ridge over to left & Kentmere Pike to the right.

After passing through Stile End we came to the Kentmere end of the Longsleddale Pass before taking a left turn towards Kentmere & its narrow lanes all lined by wooden telegraph poles. Photo opportunities looking into Kentmere were plentiful should you stop & have a look over the stone wall every now & again.

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Almost back at St Cuthbert’s Church Kentmere.

We took in the quiet narrow lanes only stopping once in a while to have a nosey at the traditional Cottages typical to the Kentmere Valley most of who’s front doors were left open such is life & a world away to what we all know as town or city life.

It seems Kentmere is the place that time forgot, and long may it remain that way.

We crossed the River Kent for the last time before taking on the very last ascent of the day before reaching the Church where our cars were left to bake in the sun some seven hours ago. My car is parked a short walk away from David’s so we kit down separately only to re-join for one last chat at the back of David’s car where I take an impressive lean on the rear wing as David talks about our next walk planned for August.

Lets hope we don’t have to wait nearly nine months before we get that walk underway, yet if we do, lets hope it turns out half as good as todays walk.