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WAINWRIGHT’S

Lost Tour


There is a hill that stands for me Beyond the sunset and the sea, A ladder of light ascending; When I have crossed the evening ray And lost my comrade of white day. It beckons to me, bending A mountain-way of wind and rain to draw my feet from the dark plain:Where stars of slumber kindle on its crest, My hill, the high hill, from wandering to rest Geoffrey Winthrop-Young

Haystacks


WAINWRIGHT’S

Lost Tour ED GELDARD


Mardale 1931

First published 2010 Amberley Publishing Cirencester Road, Chalford, Stroud, Gloucestershire, GL6 8PE

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reprinted or reproduced or utilised in any form or by any electronic, mechanical or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including photocopying and recording, or in any information storage or retrieval system, without the permission in writing from the Publishers.

www.amberley-books.com British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data. Photographs & Text Š Ed Geldard, 2010 The right of Ed Geldard to be identified as the Author of this work has been asserted in accordance with the Copyrights, Designs and Patents Act 1988. ISBN 9 78 1 84868 950 3

A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library. Typeset in 11.5pt on 13pt Venetian. Typesetting by Amberley Publishing. Printed in the UK by Hamptons.


Contents Acknowledgements

6

Dedication

7

Introduction

8

Prologue

11

Outline of Route

12

DAY ONE:

Windermere to Patterdale

15

DAY TWO:

Patterdale to Keswick

37

DAY THREE:

Keswick to Buttermere

61

DAY FOUR:

Buttermere to Wasdale

89

DAY FIVE:

Wasdale to Langdale

117

DAY SIX:

Langdale to Windermere

161

Afterword

185

Index

189


acknowledgements I would like to acknowledge the help given by Joan Self of the National Meteorological Archive; it was she who, time and again, answered all my queries about the weather at the time of the Tour. Thank you Joan. My thanks also go to LD Mountain Centre for supplying the clothing and rucksacks; to Don Bennett of Durham, for scanning the transparencies; to Frances Lincoln, holders of the Wainwright rights; to Gary Craven who rebuilt my old computer at the most critical point; to Jasper Hadman of Amberley Publishing for his meticulous editing; to Cedric Iley for rechecking the map references for me; and to Jocelin Winthrop-Young for permission to use his father’s poem. All played their part in making this book what it is. Any errors, which I’m sure you will find, are mine and mine alone. Of all of those who helped me, the greatest debt I owe is to Mag. Over the course of the eight months that I spent on the tour, her commitment and enthusiasm outstripped my own. Without her help none of the images in this book would have been taken.


FOR A.W. ‘And in the darkest hours of urban depression, I will sometimes take out that dog’s eared map And dream awhile of more spacious days and perhaps a dried blade of grass will fall out of it to remind me that I was once a freeman on the hills’. H. Sidgewick Cockley Beck Farm sitting room July 1924


Introduction Yorkshire Dales 1989. Outside rain beat incessantly against the window; McCaskill had got it wrong again. Inside the condensation ran in rivulets down the panes; scones, jam and cream long since gone. Approaching Garsdale Head we had taken a side road leading to Grisedale, sometimes referred to as ‘the valley that died’, then on again past The Moor Cock Inn and Aisgill before stopping in the village of Nateby. Here, in the warmth of a small tearoom, events that would change my outlook and opinion forever were about to take place. The cigarette, which had now replaced the familiar pipe of my companion, looked strangely out of place. ‘Do you want to do the book?’ he asked in a matter of fact way. For a moment I sat quite still, not sure if I had heard correctly. ‘What does it involve?’ I replied. His eyes twinkled with enthusiasm. ‘Fifteen chapters, two hundred and thirteen pages, and two hundred and thirty photographs. From Kendal in the West to Wharfedale in the East, from Keld in the North to Malham in the South ... Limestone Country.’ From the high ground I gazed down at the Buttertubs through a cold heavy drizzle; I was there because Alfred Wainwright had asked ‘Is it possible to take a photogenic shot to show all five pots?’ Mentally I had begun to question the reason for this unasked-for outing and introduction to Alfred Wainwright. The reason had now become quite clear. The Westmorland Gazette was to publish his next book, and Wainwright was offering me the photography. We had met for the first time some two hours earlier, when Andrew Nichol, the editor of the Westmorland Gazette, had popped into the studio and asked me if I had a couple of hours to spare to go for a drive. ‘I want you to meet someone,’ he said. A meeting with Alfred Wainwright was the last thing I imagined. It was the beginning of a friendship that lasted until his death. The Lake District is a unique panorama of mountains, valleys and lakes, unequalled anywhere in the country. Each mile opens up fresh and wonderful views. Roads that wind through green and narrow valleys lead, after a few miles, to steep impressive passes, frowned on by soaring Gothic crags. The lakes themselves differ one from another, not only in size and shape, but also in surroundings, character and atmosphere; never the same from one day to the next, nor, more obviously, from one month or season to the next. Different weather, different cloud formation, different colouring and light: there is always something new. On the subject of rain, many will say ‘Doesn’t it always rain in the Lake District?’ Well, it has been said that Seathwaite in Borrowdale remains indelibly marked as the wettest place in England, with 130 inches of rain a year (although local rumour has it that this is simply down to Borrowdale Mountain Rescue Team relieving themselves into the rain gauge after a hard day on the fells!). The answer is that it doesn’t. It is a common factor in all mountain areas that, generally, when it rains it rains hard, but quite often it will clear unbelievably quickly. It must be remembered too that if there was not any rain, there would be no becks tumbling down the fellsides, and no lakes into which they could tumble. It was in 1930 that Alfred Wainwright made his first visit to the Lake District. So taken was he by the beauty of the fells that when he returned home to the mill town of Blackburn he began to make plans for the following year, for he was determined to see everything worth seeing. On Saturday, 23 May 1931, he and his three companions set out on their Spring Holiday; who would have believed it would turn out to be such a test of endurance. In 1993 Michael Joseph published Wainwright’s Tour in the Lake District – Whitsuntide 1931 as part of their Wainwright series. Eric Maudsley tells us in his introduction that a number of 8


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR variations were made to the walk. In the Sources and Acknowledgements section of the book we are informed that the walk lasted for seven days rather than six; Jenny Dereham tells us that this information came from the introduction by Eric Maudsley. After reading it through several times I can find no reference to an extra day, only slight variations to the first four days. Wainwright accepted that because of the late arrival at Windermere an alternative route was required on the first day, but not on the days that were to follow. The tour was conceived to see every mountain, lake and valley in the Lake District within the space of six days. The conclusions that I have come to regarding these variations are drawn from a lifetime’s experience on the fells. DAY 1 23 May 1931, Windermere to Patterdale Weather forecast: Cloudy with some lightening, heavy rain in evening. Eric Maudsley informs us in his introduction that it was early evening as they approached Ill Bell. He also tells us that the party retreated to the Troutbeck area to seek accommodation for the night. Wainwright’s timetable puts this around 7pm. It is my theory that, because of the heavy rain, the group retraced their steps to Yoke and then descended into Troutbeck Park. My reasoning is that if they had left Ill Bell they were committed to continuing the ridge as far as Thornthwaite, from where they could have dropped down to Threshthwaite Mouth and Hartsop. This, however, would mean another two hours in the driving rain. The following day the small party would have probably made the short journey via the Kirkstone Pass to Patterdale to start day two. DAY 2 24 May 1931, Patterdale to Keswick Weather forecast: Very cloudy with rain at times. Maudsley tells us that they had to leave out Blencathra on day two. Again, in my opinion, this was due to the weather; although not as heavy, this was their second day of discomfort. We have no information as to where they left the route, but I believe it would have been at Sticks Pass or Calfhow Pike. From there, after descending to the road, it is but a short bus ride into Keswick. DAY 3 25 May 1931, Keswick to Buttermere Weather Forecast: A cloudy morning followed by showers in the afternoon. Maudsley informs us that on day three Grasmoor was omitted from the schedule. Wainwright’s schedule tells us that they would have reached Dale Head just after noon. The morning had been cloudy and they were once again suffering from intermittent showers. Upon reaching Robinson around 3pm they must have dropped down to Buttermere. This was because once they had crossed the road at Newlands they would be committed to Grasmoor and a further 6 hours of showers. DAY 4 26 May 1931, Buttermere to Wasdale Weather forecast: Bright all day. Once again, we are told of a variation – the exclusion of Pillar. This is the hardest day in the tour and I’m not surprised that they cut short their day. It was bright and hot for the time of year. I believe that on reaching the Black Sail Pass they made up 9


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR their minds to descend into Wasdale. They would have been tired at this point, and again, this is the only escape route before being committed to the Pillar group. DAY 5 27 May 1931, Wasdale to Langdale Weather forecast: Bright in the morning and afternoon turning to thunder and overcast in the evening. The second of the two good days, this time without any variations, but it was still a hard day with over 5000 ft of ascent. DAY 6 28 May 1931, Langdale to Windermere Weather forecast: Cloudy and overcast all day. Rain by evening. Again there are no variations that we know of. Wainwright’s schedule tells us that it would have been around 5pm when they reached Ambleside to start the long journey home by bus. Whatever the reasons were, I have said enough and this is Wainwright’s walk; go and see for yourselves, I am sure you will not regret it. Ed Geldard

A. W. 1991 For the technophiles, I used four cameras and a variety of lenses during this walk; these were a Hasselblad SWC, a 500C, a Bronica ETRSi and a Pentax MX. All images were in the pre-digital age. The film was Kodak EPP. Throughout this walk I was following the footsteps of A.W.; using the six foolscap sheets that Eric Maudsley kept for six decades. I did not use the variations made to it by Michael Joseph in Wainwright’s Tour in the Lake District – Whitsuntide 1931; in fact, it wasn’t until the book was published that I learned of them. As I have said already, this was A.W.’s walk. 10


PROLOGUE Winter 1931. Outside, the snow lay two feet deep in places. In the warmth of the Borough treasurer’s office at Blackburn, the young man’s eyes quickly scanned the sheets that lay on his desk. The work, done in his spare time, had taken him months of meticulous planning before it could be condensed into six foolscap sheets; the notes, such as they were, were made using a half inch Bartholomew’s map of Westmorland and Cumberland. It was the outline of a proposed walking tour in the Lake District for the forthcoming Whitsuntide holiday of that year; he, with three of his colleagues, Jim Sharples, Harry Driver and Eric Maudsley, would embark on an adventure, dreamed of in the long winter months. The previous year, at the age of twenty-three, Alfred Wainwright had taken his first holiday in the Lake District. Leaving behind his dreary life in the mill town, he found himself in a world of unbelievable beauty; the experience was ‘a revelation so unexpected that I stood transfixed, unable to believe my eyes ... those few hours on Orrest Head cast a spell that changed my life.’ On his return, he began to make his plans. The ‘Tour’ was to be the most comprehensive walk tackled to date. It was the year before his marriage to Ruth Holden; a marriage he was to regret over the next thirty-six years. With Whitsuntide fast approaching, Wainwright addressed the small band in the warmth of his office. He told them that, with their time limit, it would be impossible to visit every corner of Lakeland; yet, if the route was painstakingly followed, the party would visit ‘everywhere worth mentioning’. It would be ARDUOUS, but the rewards would be well worth the time and effort expended. It would avoid the tourist traps and picnic spots; its aim was to see EVERY lake, EVERY valley and EVERY mountain in the District. It would be ‘THE GRAND TOUR’. It was not until Alfred Wainwright’s death, six decades later, that those six foolscap sheets once again saw the light of day.

Dun Bull Inn, Mardale 1931 11


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Day

From

To

A.W.’s Mileage

Aprrox. Mileage

Approx. Ascent in Ft.

A.W.’s Ascent

Saturday

Windermere

Patterdale

16

13.5

3746

3850

Sunday

Patterdale

Keswick

20

20.25

5428

6900

Monday

Keswick

Buttermere

19

18.25

6455

6650

Tuesday

Buttermere

Wasdale

18

16

6485

7750

Wednesday

Wasdale

Langdale

14.5

13..5

5236

6300

Thursday

Langdale

Windermere

15

15.5

3049

3400

Totals

102.5

97

26653

34850

Note: All distances and ascents are approximate and should only be used as a guide. * Naismith’s Rule: Allow one hour for every three miles forward, and half an hour for every one thousand feet of ascent. A study by Leeds University in 1998 found it accurate within 25 per cent on routes in the Lake District.

12


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

14


SATURDAY 23 May 1931 WINDERMERE TO PATTERDALE Forecast: Cloudy with some lightening, heavy rain in evening. From

To

Map ref

Height

Mileage

Ascent

Windermere

Orrest Head

NY 4140 9937

783

0.5

383

0

Orrest Head

Dubbs reservoir

NY 4220 0170

741

2

186

-204

Dubbs reservoir

Garburn Pass

NY 4345 0445

1480

2

739

0

Garburn Pass

Yoke

NY 4375 0675

2316

1.5

836

0

Yoke

Ill Bell

NY 4370 0770

2484

0.5

338

-170

Ill Bell

Froswick

NY 4350 0850

2362

0.5

157

-280

Froswick

Thornthwaite Crag

NY 4300 1010

2572

1

476

-266

Thornthwaite Crag

High Street

NY 4410 1110

2719

1

249

-102

High Street

The Knott

NY 4370 1265

2423

1.1

94

-390

The Knott

Angle Tarn

NY 4170 1440

1572

1.5

0

-851

Angle Tarn

Angle Tarn Pikes

NY 4145 1470

1860

0.3

288

Angle Tarn Pikes

Patterdale

NY 3900 1595

495

1.6

0

-1365

13.5

3746

-3628

Totals for day

Descent

0


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

ORREST HEAD ‘The best time to visit the Lake District is between 1st of January and the 31st December’, so said Christopher North. Windermere, or Winandermere as Wordsworth and other Lake poets called it, is the largest of the lakes. It derives its name from the Norse hero Winander or Vinandr. From Orrest Head the lake gives an impression of its true size; a full ten miles in length, it exhibits the most magnificent backdrop of mountains, not only in Westmorland but also in the whole world. At the south end of the lake we have Coniston Old Man, and in the same direction Black Comb appears over Claife Heights, followed by Wetherlam, Wrynose Pass, Crinkle Crags, Scafell, Bowfell, Great Gable, Langdale Pikes, Loughrigg, Fairfield, Red Screes, Caudale Moor, Thornthwaite and many more in between. During the winter of 1896/97, when the lake was covered with thick ice, the railway company of the day ran excursions for skaters from London for six shillings (thirty pence) return.

16


DAY 1 WINDERMERE TO PATTERDALE

DUBBS RESERVOIR Anglers enjoying a quiet afternoon at Dubbs Reservoir.

TROUTBECK, SUMMER The beautiful valley of Troutbeck was once a forest area, where harassed and terrified Brigantes took refuge from the Romans who were making their great road over High Street. Traces of an ancient settlement have been found on Troutbeck Tongue, the impudent elongated hill that divides the valley into two. Centuries later, the valley was enclosed and divided among the inhabitants. 17


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

TROUTBECK, WINTER The snow-clad sentinels of Yoke, Ill Bell and Thornthwaite dominate Troutbeck Park, originally a mediaeval deer park belonging to the barons of Kendal. Beatrix Potter owned a farm here where she bred Herdwick sheep.

GARBURN PASS Formerly an important packhorse route, this steep and stony track, known as the Garburn Pass, rises across the shoulder of Applethwaite Common. It is the only direct link between the valleys of Troutbeck and Kentmere. The long ascent, enclosed in part between low stone walls, allows arresting views of Yoke, Ill Bell, Froswick, Thornthwaite and Caudale moor. The upper valley is divided into two by Troutbeck Tongue. 18


DAY 1 WINDERMERE TO PATTERDALE

YOKE SUMMIT Yoke provides a gentle introduction to the ridge that runs north to Thornthwaite Beacon and High Street. From its summit we look to Ill Bell and Froswick.

19


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

RAINSBORROW CRAG Kentmere, the source of the Kent, a river that gave its name to Kendal, is divided into two distinct areas. The lower part, now that it no longer has the mere, which for over a mile occupied the fields south of the church, is featureless. The upper valley is more characteristic, having the High Street range at its head. Above the disused quarries, the black precipice of Rainsborrow Crag rises above upper Kentmere.

20


DAY 1 WINDERMERE TO PATTERDALE

KENTMERE VALLEY The Kentmere Valley offers the fell walker not only a horseshoe ridge walk, but also the longest single high level ridge walk: from Sour Howes above Windermere to Arthur’s Pike on the edge of Ullswater. The summit of Ill Bell gives a wonderful view of the valley.

21


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

ILL BELL SUMMIT Ill Bell is usually climbed by way of the Garburn Pass from Troutbeck and along the ridge over Yoke. It is the highest and shapeliest of the peaks on this ridge leading to Thornthwaite Crag. The multiplicity of cairns that crowd the small top make it one of the most distinctive summits in Lakeland.

22


DAY 1 WINDERMERE TO PATTERDALE

FROSWICK FROM ILL BELL The ridge from Ill Bell to Thornthwaite Crag is a series of ups and downs. On the ridge ahead lies Thornthwaite Beacon and High Street.

23


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

SCOTS RAKE Wild fell ponies on Scots Rake, where in the distant past the marauding Scots swept along until they were cut down by Hugh Hird and his trusty longbow. In the distance we can see Froswick, Ill Bell and the Kentmere Valley.

Opposite page: THORNTHWAITE BEACON Thornthwaite Crag, topped by its fourteen foot high beacon, is the most distinctive summit in Lakeland, a landmark for miles around. This monolithic cairn stands west of the Roman road leading on to High Street, at an angle in the wall crossing the summit. The most scenic route to the beacon is by way of Yoke, Ill Bell and Froswick, from the Garburn Pass. 24


DAY 1 WINDERMERE TO PATTERDALE

25


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

HIGH STREET High Street and its satellites make an ideal ridge walking area. The flat crest that carries the Roman road is seen here from Thornthwaite Beacon.

26


DAY 1 WINDERMERE TO PATTERDALE

HIGH STREET SUMMIT The summit trig point of High Street could stand almost anywhere on this flat featureless plateau, and it’s no wonder that that the people from the valleys used to hold horse races up here. From the summit we look across to Great Gable and the Scafell range.

27


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

RACECOURSE HILL, HIGH STREET High Street takes its name from the Roman road (the ‘Street’), which traverses the fellside linking ‘GALAVA’, near Ambleside, to ‘BROVACUM’, near Penrith. The summit, marked by an Ordnance Survey column, is a vast grassy plateau with a tumbledown wall running north to south over the crest, where, until 1835, an annual shepherds’ meet took place with wrestling and horse racing. The horse racing and sport finally came to an end, and were merged into the Shepherds’ meet at Mardale. A pleasant way to climb High Street from the west is to start at Low Hartsop and walk up Pasture Beck.

HIGH STREET DESCENT The grassy promenade of the High Street ridge descends to a narrow depression at the Straits of Riggindale before climbing again towards the Knott. This is the most popular ridge walk of the eastern fells. 28


DAY 1 WINDERMERE TO PATTERDALE

MARDALE Mardale was once described as ‘a hamlet, unforgettable for the charm of its romantic beauty and seclusion from the world’. This was before 1919 when Manchester Corporation acquired Haweswater Lake in Mardale, together with 24,000 acres of surrounding catchment area, for its conversion into a reservoir. The water level was raised by almost a hundred feet and the tiny village of Mardale disappeared. During the summer drought of 1995, the reservoir was drawn down further than it had been since its construction in 1936. As the weeks passed, the waters continued to recede and the remains of the drowned hamlet slowly re-emerged from beneath the lake. From our viewpoint we look over Goosemire to Chapel Bridge and into Riggingdale.

29


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

THE KNOTT The Knott is of little interest and is only a small cairn on a grassy mound, easily reached along the High Street ridge.

ANGLE TARN ‘The mountain tarns,’ said Wordsworth, ‘can only be recommended to the notice of the inquisitive traveller who has time to spare.’ On a sunny day, Angle Tarn is a favourite place for picnics and is easily reached from Patterdale via the Boardale path. This beautiful sheet of water, with its islands and calm clear waters, is passed on the descent from High Street and makes a perfect foreground for the distant Helvellyn range. 30


DAY 1 WINDERMERE TO PATTERDALE

ANGLE TARN PIKES From the northern Pike of Angle tarn we look across Deepdale to Helvellyn and St Sunday Crag. At one time Deepdale was thought by many to be the most important centre in the eastern fells.

DESCENT INTO PATTERDALE On the descent from Boardale Hause, walkers may pause a moment and enjoy the view of Patterdale and the surrounding fells. 31


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

NOTE Wainwright tells us that it would not be possible for the party to leave Windermere until late afternoon, and therefore some diversion of the route would be required. He suggests two alternatives: (1) From Thornthwaite Crag they could descend via Threshthwaite Cove to Low Hartsop, and from there make for Patterdale. This would amend the figures to read five and a half hours of travel, fourteen miles and 3100 feet of ascent. (2) From the Windermere Reservoir they could follow the valley alongside the River Trout to Troutbeck Park, skirt round The Tongue and climb up to Threshthwaite Cove before descending to Patterdale via Pasture Beck. This would reduce the climbing to a minimum and, other than going via the Kirkstone Pass, it is the shortest practical route to Patterdale. The revised timings for this would be four to four and a half hours of travel, twelve miles and 2050 feet of ascent. Because of inclement weather conditions the party were forced into a third option: they had to descend to the Troutbeck area and seek accommodation for the night.

THRESHTHWAITE MOUTH From the eastern edge of Thornthwaite Crag one looks down into Threshthwaite Cove. The desolate walls of the Cove rise up to form the col between the steep shale slopes of Thornthwaite Crag and the rugged slopes of Caudale Moor. This is Threshthwaite Mouth. 32


DAY 1 WINDERMERE TO PATTERDALE

HARTSOP Nestling in a secluded valley a few miles from Patterdale, the tiny hamlet of Hartsop contains several interesting seventeenth-century buildings and cottages with spinning galleries. In the days of William Rufus the area around Hartsop was a hunting forest, and it takes its name from the deer that ran here. In winter, deer from the Martindale herd can sometimes be seen on Hartsop and Caudale Moor.

33


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

THE KIRKSTONE Below Red Screes, among the fallen boulders only a few yards from the roadside, is the boulder that gives the pass its name, the Kirkstone. On the long ascent from Ullswater, its silhouette, said to resemble a Kirk, is conspicuous on the skyline. Wordsworth says: This block – and yon, whose church-like frame Gives to this savage pass its name

34


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

35


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

36


SUNDAY 24 May 1931 PATTERDALE TO KESWICK Forecast: Very cloudy with rain at times. From

To

Map ref.

Height

Mileage

Ascent

Patterdale

Grassthwaitehowe

Grassthwaitehowe

NY 3850 1595

850

1.5

355

0

Striding Edge

NY 3485 1495

2687

2

1837

0

Striding Edge

Helvellyn

NY 3415 1512

3113

0.5

426

0

Helvellyn

Helvellyn Low Man

NY 3370 1550

3033

0.5

84

-164

Helvellyn Low Man

Raise

NY 3435 1745

2889

1.25

144

-419

Raise

Sticks Pass

NY 3420 1820

2457

0.5

0

-432

Sticks Pass

Stybarrow Dod

NY 3444 1884

2690

0.5

233

0

Stybarrow Dod

Watson Dod

NY 3355 1955

2584

0.5

0

-106

Watson Dod

Great Dod

NY 3425 2045

2807

0.75

223

0

Great Dod

Calfhow Pike

NY 3305 2112

2166

1

0

-641

Calfhow Pike

White Pike

NY 3375 2297

2105

1.25

0

-61

White Pike

Wallthwaite

NY 3540 2620

558

4.25

0

-1547

Wallthwaite

Scales

NY 3430 2690

781

1

223

-20

Scales

Sharp Edge

NY 3275 2835

2254

1.5

1473

0

Sharp Edge

Blencathra

NY 3240 2805

2848

0.75

430

0

Blencathra

Threlkeld

NY 3220 2540

528

2.5

0

-2320

5428

-5710

Totals for day Bus to Keswick

20.25

Descent


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

PATTERDALE Mountains are the natural boundaries of Patterdale or Patrick’s Dale, the small hamlet situated at the head of Ullswater. Tradition says that in AD 504 St Patrick passed through the dale performing baptisms at a holy well that is still preserved by the roadside. Today’s visitor passes over the same well-trodden routes to High Street and Kidsey Pike; others may go by way of the old packhorse trails to Howtown on the eastern side of Ullswater, or through Grisedale to Helvellyn.

38


DAY 2 Patterdale to Keswick

From St Sunday Crag we look down on Ullswater, Patterdale and Grassthwaitehow.

39


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

HELVELLYN AND CATSTYCAM In Victorian times, the tourist rode from Patterdale up a pony track by way of Kepple Cove and on to Red Tarn. There they would tether their animals before ascending the slopes of Catstycam and Swirrel Edge to the summit of Helvellyn. Seen from Birkhouse Moor, the sombre, precipitous east face of Helvellyn contrasts sharply with the smooth flanks of Catstycam.

40


DAY 2 Patterdale to Keswick

STRIDING EDGE With sheer fellside on either side, the mile long arête of Striding Edge is the most frequented and exciting ridge scramble to the summit of Helvellyn. It was here, on what De Quincy called the ‘awful curtain of rock’, that Charles Gough was killed in 1805. Combined with the descent of Swirrel Edge, the traverse of Helvellyn by Striding Edge has become a Lake District classic.

41


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

STRIDING EDGE AND RED TARN The panorama from the summit of Helvellyn is striking. On a clear day almost every fell in Lakeland can be seen. Almost one thousand feet below, nestling between the two long arms of Striding Edge and Swirrel Edge, is Red Tarn, whose round contours contrast with the narrow arête of Striding Edge, and the gentle slopes of Birkhouse Moor.

Opposite page: GOUGH MEMORIAL This large memorial standing above Striding Edge, close to the summit plateau of Helvellyn, records the death of Charles Gough, a Manchester artist who, in the spring of 1805, fell to his death while attempting to cross from Patterdale to Wythburn. The story of his faithful dog, which accompanied him and remained watching his body for three months after that fateful day, has been immortalised by Scott and Wordsworth. The dog, which still was hovering nigh, Repeating the same cry, This dog, had been through three months’ space A dweller in that savage place. 42


DAY 2 Patterdale to Keswick

43


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

HELVELLYN SUMMIT (SUMMER) A mountain’s popularity does not always equate to the size of its summit cairn. Helvellyn, third highest in the Lake District, is visited almost every day of the year, yet only a small, insignificant pyramid of stones marks the plateau summit. A short distance away, a small stone memorial tablet commemorates the landing of an aeroplane, piloted by Bert Hindle and John Leeming, on the mountain plateau on 22 December 1926.

44


DAY 2 Patterdale to Keswick

HELVELLYN SUMMIT (WINTER) From the summit, Striding Edge assumes an alpine look with its sparkling white snowy arĂŞte.

45


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

ST SUNDAY FROM HELVELLYN From Helvellyn we look across Striding Edge to the shapely ridge of St Sunday Crag, with its steep scree and rocky buttress falling away northward into Grisedale. Because of the close proximity of Fairfield and Helvellyn, it is doubtful whether it is ever ascended for itself alone.

46


DAY 2 Patterdale to Keswick

SWIRRAL EDGE Two ridges lead to the summit of Helvellyn: Striding Edge and Swirral Edge. Combining both with the ascent of Helvellyn makes a classic traverse.

HELVELLYN LOWER MAN A short distance from the summit of Helvellyn lies Helvellyn Lower Man. From here there is a discernable fall before a rise over the next half mile to White Side. 47


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

THIRLMERE Mid-way between Ambleside and Keswick, in the shadows of Helvellyn, lies Thirlmere, formerly two lakes known as Leathes Water and Wythburn Water, and earlier still as Blackmere. It was in 1875 that Manchester Corporation, with its growing demands for additional water, cast its covetous eyes on Thirlmere with the intention of turning a lake into a reservoir. Its level was raised by fifty feet by a great dam; its area was more than doubled; and from it the water now runs ninety-five miles into Manchester. Ruskin said that ‘Manchester should be put to the bottom of Thirlmere, as it was trying to steal and sell the clouds of Helvellyn.’

48


DAY 2 Patterdale to Keswick

WHITE SIDE A substantial cairn marks the summit of White Side on the ascent from Thirlmere. From here we look across the Vale of Keswick to Skiddaw.

CALFHOW PIKE Calfhow Pike forms part of the Helvellyn ridge and lies about a mile due south from Clough Head. In inclement weather a quick descent can be made from here via a steep path to Hill Top Farm in the Vale of St John. 49


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

CLOUGH HEAD SUMMIT Clough Head is the name given to the most northerly summit of the ridge running south to Helvellyn. The path to it can be confusing in mist. Its summit is marked by a trig point and small shelter which can be used as a break against the wind.

50


DAY 2 Patterdale to Keswick

After descending Clough Head by White Pike and Mosedale Beck, we head northward to Wallthwaite. 51


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

CLOUGH HEAD FROM CASTLERIGG STONE CIRCLE Cradled by the surrounding mountains, the great stone circle at Castlerigg, built around 3000 BC, is one of the most visually impressive and oldest prehistoric sites in the Lake District. It is also the most visited. Of the original forty-two stones that formed this megalithic stone circle, thirty-eight remain, forming the circle of about a hundred feet in diameter. Archaeologists are of the opinion that the alignment of the stones may act as a stone calendar; sight-lines at sunrise would give various fixed dates in the year. Sometimes called the Carles, Castlerigg is the second largest stone circle in Cumbria, after Long Meg.

52


DAY 2 Patterdale to Keswick

BLECATHRA FROM TEWITT TARN Blencathra, or Saddleback as it is more commonly referred to when viewed from the east, is one of the great mountains of the Lake District. Separated from Skiddaw by the wide valley of Glenderaterra Beck, it rises in a simple arc above Threlkeld. Its long top is a series of delicate peaks that descend from the summit in fine lateral spurs and swooping hollows. From the Moorland slopes of Naddle Fell, Tewitt Tarn makes a fitting foreground for Blencathra. The abundance of reeds provides nesting sites for a variety of waterfowl. Its name is derived from the Peewits that abound on the surrounding fells.

53


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

SCALES FELL The route to Blencathra via Scales Fell is the most common as well as being the easiest. Within this lovely hamlet stands the White Horse Inn.

SHARP EDGE Sharp Edge on Blencathra runs along the north side of Scales Tarn and is one of the narrowest ridges in the Lake District. Although not as long as Striding Edge on Helvellyn, it is steeper on both sides, falling 800 feet to the tarn below. In winter, when the mountain is covered in snow, it becomes a mountaineering challenge requiring careful negotiation and is not for the faint-hearted. 54


DAY 2 Patterdale to Keswick

BLENCATHRA SUMMIT Blencathra lies at the northern edge of the Lake District. From its summit cairn there are extensive views.

55


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

WHITE CROSS On the plateau between the summit of Blencathra and Atkinson Pike there are two stone crosses to arouse the curiosity of fell walkers. The larger of these, made from white quartz-like rock set into the ground, is to the memory of Mr Staughan of Threlkeld, who was killed on active service in 1942. It was built by his friend Harold Robinson who, sometimes twice a day, climbed the fell from Threlkeld, each time carrying a stone for the cross. He died in 1988 at eighty years of age.

56


DAY 2 Patterdale to Keswick

THRELKELD Looking down the broad smooth shoulder of Blease Fell to Threlkeld.

57


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

THRELKELD Nestling in the shadow of Blencathra on the Penrith road is a twisty sort of village. Threlkeld, once famous for its Cumberland wrestlers, has fox hunting in its blood. The simple church dates from the eighteenth century, although the church records go back to Elizabethan times. They relate a local custom by which a person making a promise of marriage was obliged to give five shillings (twenty-five pence) to the poor of the parish if he or she broke the contract. The village is now a base for climbing Blencathra. 58


DAY 2 Patterdale to Keswick

59


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

60


WHIT MONDAY 25 May 1931 KESWICK TO BUTTERMERE Forecast: A cloudy morning followed by showers in the afternoon. From

To

Map ref

Height

Keswick

Portinscale

NY 2505 2360

250

Portinscale

Catbells

NY 2440 1990

1400

Catbells

Maiden Moor

NY 2370 1820

Maiden moor

Eel Crags

Eel Crags

Mileage

Descent

0

-270

2.5

1150

0

1888

1.25

700

-212

NY 2345 1643

2126

1.25

238

-115

Dalehead Crags

NY 2260 1560

1900

0.75

269

-380

Dalehead Crags

Dale Head

NY 2230 1530

2473

0.75

573

0

Dale Head

Hindscarth

NY 2150 1575

2385

1

265

-385

Hindscarth

Robinson

NY 2015 1685

2419

1.5

559

-525

Robinson

Newlands Hause

NY 1930 1760

1096

1

0

-1323

Newlands Hause

Knott Rigg

NY 1965 1855

1772

0.75

676

0

Knott Rigg

Ard Crags

NY 2060 1970

1864

0.75

220

-128

Ard Crags

Sail

NY 1985 2035

2400

1

874

-338

Sail

Crag Hill

NY 1931 2035

2753

0.25

353

0

Crag Hill

Grasmoor

NY 1745 2030

2791

1

161

-381

Grasmoor

Wandhope

NY 1880 1975

2533

1

161

-419

Wandhope

Whiteless Pike

NY 1795 1895

2159

0.75

256

-118

Whiteless Pike

Buttermere

NY 1750 1695

450

1.75

0

-1709

18.25

6455

-6303

Totals for day

1

Ascent

61


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

KESWICK, ‘METROPOLIS OF THE LAKES’ Situated on the River Greta at the northern extremity of the unseen Derwent Water, sheltered beneath the high slopes of Skiddaw, is this attractive old market town, where climbers, walkers and tourists rub shoulders in the confines of its narrow streets. In July they are joined by scores of clergymen and church people who converge on the town for the Keswick Convention. In the centre of the market place, on the site of an older building dating from Elizabethan times, stands the Moot Hall. At the time of Elizabeth I the mining area around Keswick was the equivalent of the Canadian Klondike, and Keswick itself was the Dawson City of the age. The mining was placed in the expert hands of the Bavarians, who were considered the most advanced miners at that time. In 1813 the old courthouse was pulled down and the German miners who worked here erected the present building, Tyrolean in mood, on the lines of a south German Stadt House. A diligent local winds the curiously single-handed clock in the tower every night. 62


DAY 3 Keswick to BUTTERMERE

CATBELLS FROM OVERSIDE WOOD Catbells, that oddly named fell rising steeply from Derwent Water’s western shore, belongs to the Newlands Valley and Mrs Tiggywinkle of Beatrix Potter fame, whose house was on the hillside above Little Town. Its name is derived from ‘cat bield’, a place where wild cats shelter, and its popularity has become legendary. However, visitors should be aware that the open mine shafts which litter the fell on both flanks have given Catbells a reputation for minor accidents.

63


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

Rhododendrons in Nichol End Wood.

CATBELLS The Catbells ridge has always been a popular walk with tourists from Keswick, many of whom do not venture much further. It justifies itself as a walk by having excellent views over Derwent Water, Borrowdale and Newlands Valley, which is exactly what the tourist requires. 64


DAY 3 Keswick to BUTTERMERE

THE JAWS OF BORROWDALE At the southern end of Derwent Water, just beyond Grange, where the slopes of Grange Fell and Castle Crag come together to give scarcely enough room for the river and road to pass, lies the famous Jaws of Borrowdale. It was here, in one of the caves of Castle Crag, that Millican Dalton lived his strange lifestyle between the wars. Dressed in homemade clothes, he sailed the Derwent on a raft of his own construction, a ‘hippy’ before ‘hippies’ existed.

65


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

DERWENT WATER AND SKIDDAW FROM MAIDEN MOOR Beyond the shapely ridge of Catbells, in the shadow of Skiddaw and Blencathra, the Vale of Keswick spreads outward to the sylvan beauty of Derwent Water, and its numerous islands. In the seventh century, St Herbert, a disciple of Cuthbert, the Northumbrian saint, came to live as a hermit on the largest of these islands, which later became known as St Herbert’s Island. In the past it has enjoyed many romantic associations; Shelley, Coleridge, Southey and Ruskin all spent their honeymoons in the area.

66


DAY 3 Keswick to BUTTERMERE

MAIDEN MOOR PLATEAU High country can rarely be appreciated properly from the bottom of valleys, and the long ridge above the small hamlet of Grange-in-Borrowdale is not a ridge, as it appears to be, but the edge of a wide grassy plateau. Maiden Moor lies on the ridge that forms the western side of the Borrowdale Valley. The ascent is usually made from Hawse End as a ridge walk over Catbells.

67


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

CAUSEY PIKE Causey Pike, whose knuckle-like ridge and prominent knob of a summit dominate the Newlands skyline, is one of Lakeland’s most popular peaks. In 1864 E. L. Linton wrote, ‘with its royal fatuous face, George the Third, double chin, snub nose, receding forehead and all, can be made out in the crowning knob of Causey Pike.’ Like many of the fells around Newlands, it was once the scene of much mining activity.

68


DAY 3 Keswick to BUTTERMERE

EEL CRAGS Eel Crags lies between Maiden Moor and Dalehead high above the Newlands Valley, the highest point of which is High Spy. From here we look across to Dale Head.

69


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

HIGH SPY SUMMIT The summit of the ridge above Eel Crags is known as High Spy: a curious summit ringed by crags. Its western flank overlooks Borrowdale. 70


DAY 3 Keswick to BUTTERMERE

EEL CRAGS FROM DALE HEAD TARN Causey Pike and the craggy profile of Eel Crags are seen here from Dale Head Tarn.

DALE HEAD CAIRN In 1993, after years of vandalism, the summit cairn of Dale Head, perched on the very edge of its precipitous north face, was lovingly restored to its former glory by Ray McHaffie of Keswick. 71


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

DALE HEAD Dale Head, guardian of the Vale of Newlands, is perhaps the easiest of all the high fells to ascend. Simply follow the old wire fence beginning opposite the Youth Hostel at Honister Hause. The summit, rounded and grassy, is topped with a beautiful cairn.

72


DAY 3 Keswick to BUTTERMERE

HONISTER PASS The Honister Pass is the direct route between the head of Borrowdale and Buttermere. Starting at Seatoller in Borrowdale, the road rises, in parts at a gradient of one in four, to the summit at 1176 feet. Immediately beyond the crest, the full downward sweep of Honister Crag bursts suddenly into view, presenting its almost perpendicular outline. Once notoriously dangerous, the descent, with its boulder strewn verges meandering west alongside Gatesgarth Beck towards Buttermere, is now considered to be as safe as any road in the region.

73


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

ROBINSON SUMMIT From the summit cairn of Robinson we look towards Crummock and Loweswater. The hamlet of Kirkstile nestles in the green fields lying between the two.

Looking back on the day with Blencathra and Clough Head in the distance. 74


DAY 3 Keswick to BUTTERMERE

ROBINSON At the western end of the ridge from Dale Head, Robinson, synonymous with Buttermere since the early nineteenth century when the proprietor of the Fish Inn shared the same name, is the least attractive of the Buttermere fells. Its name, however, comes from a former landowner. The broad stony plateau of the summit gives extensive views: across Buttermere is the craggy face of the High Stile range; to the right is Mellbreak, beside Crummock Water; and Grasmoor appears north-west beyond Wandop, Sail and Grisedale Pike. The most interesting and scenic ascent is made from Newlands. 75


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

ARD CRAGS TO KNOTT RIGG Looking southwest along the ridge to Knott Rigg from Ard Crags. High Stile and Red Pike dominate the skyline.

76


DAY 3 Keswick to BUTTERMERE

SAIL SUMMIT Sail is quite a good fell but better surround it. From its grassy summit, the ridge route to Crag Hill is easily defined.

77


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

CRAG HILL The trig point on Crag Hill. In early summer, Crag Hill has patches of alpine flowers growing on its rocky summit. 78


DAY 3 Keswick to BUTTERMERE

GRASMOOR SUMMIT Grasmoor, with its eight tops, has the distinction of having the most extensive summit over 2500 feet. As a mountain viewpoint it is without equal. To the south the Great Central Fells present an imposing front of receding ranges – High Stile, Pillar, Kirkfell, Great Gable, Great End, Scafell, Bowfell and Langdale.

79


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

WANDHOPE Wandhope lies about a mile southwest of Crag Hill. From the ridge to Whiteless Pike we look back to the broad snow covered slopes of Wandhope and Thirdgill Head.

WHITELESS PIKE Whiteless Pike lies west of Wandhope, on the ridge that comes up from Buttermere. Its summit provides fine views over the Buttermere Valley to the High Stile ridge. 80


DAY 3 Keswick to BUTTERMERE

As we descend from Whiteless Pike, Crummock and Loweswater come into view at Saddle Gate.

81


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

GRASMOOR FROM LANTHWAITE GREEN The immense bulk of Grasmoor, always recognisable when seen from other fells, towers over the tiny hamlet of Lanthwaite Green where the early British had a large settlement. On 9 September 1760, a fearful storm arose over the Coledale Fells. An enormous torrent of water cascaded down the ravine of Gasgale Gill, between Whiteside and Brackenthwaite Fell, and burst over Lanthwaite Green with devastating results, laying waste to ten acres with mud and stone wrenched from the sides of the mountains. 82


DAY 3 Keswick to BUTTERMERE

CRUMMOCK WATER AND RANNERDALE KNOTTS The black shoulder of Rannerdale Knotts, with its mile long knuckle-like ridge, seems to hang over the east shore of Crummock Water. Legend has it that Rannerdale, the little dale running alongside the Knotts, was the only part of England not conquered by the invading Normans. Often referred to as the Secret Valley, it is well known for bluebells, which carpet the dale in the spring. Crummock Water takes its name from the Norse word for crumpled or bent, appertaining to cows having that kind of horn. The late Canon Rawnsley mentions the Norse chieftain Buthar as having given the district its name of Butter-mere, and Sour Milk Ghyll would seem to bear this out. The fells that surround Crummock are graceful and much less rugged than other areas of the Lake District, and the indented shore competes with Buttermere for beauty. 83


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

ST JAMES’ CHURCH, BUTTERMERE Set on a rocky outcrop surrounded by the magnificent Buttermere scenery is the tiny Church of St James. It was built in 1846 to replace the nearby chapel of Brigham. Across the valley, the waterfall of Sour Milk Ghyll cascades down from Bleaberry Tarn into the calm waters of Buttermere.

84


DAY 3 Keswick to BUTTERMERE

WAINWRIGHT MEMORIAL Set into the alcove of the south window is a memorial tablet dedicated to the legendary fell walker Alfred Wainwright, whose pictorial guide books with their hand-drawn maps sold in their millions. The window looks out onto Haystacks, where, at his request, his ashes were scattered at the edge of Innominate Tarn. 85


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

BUTTERMERE Ringed on three sides by mountains, including the dramatic peaks of Grasmoor, Haystacks, Fleetwith Pike and Mellbreak, the Buttermere Valley at the western end of the Honister Pass is the only Lakeland valley to possess three lakes: Buttermere, Crummock and Loweswater. Reminiscent of a Norwegian fjord, Buttermere is separated from Crummock by a strip of low lying land half a mile wide. In the distant past they were undoubtedly one lake.

86


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

87


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

88


TUESDAY 26 May 1931 BUTTERMERE TO WASDALE Forecast: Bright all day. From

To

Map ref

Height

Mileage

Buttermere

Red Pike (via Ruddy Beck)

NY 1605 1545

2479

2

Red Pike

High Stile

NY 1675 1475

2644

0.75

High Stile

High Crag

NY 1805 1415

2395

High Crag

Scarth Gap

NY 1893 1330

Scarth Gap

Haystacks

Haystacks

Ascent

Descent

2029

0

301

-136

1

0

-249

1450

0.75

0

-945

NY 1935 1315

1946

0.5

496

0

Blackbeck Tarn

NY 2090 1215

1598

0.5

0

-348

Blackbeck Tarn

Brandreth

NY 2150 1195

2344

1.25

496

0

Brandreth

Green Gable

NY 2150 1075

2527

0.75

391

-208

Green Gable

Windy Gap

NY 2145 1055

2400

0.25

0

-127

Windy Gap

Great Gable

NY 2115 1035

2949

0.25

549

0

Great Gable

Kirk Fell

NY 1990 1075

2630

1

593

-912

Kirk Fell

Black Sail Pass

NY1915 1145

1798

0.5

0

-832

Black Sail Pass

Looking Stead

NY 1860 1180

2058

0.5

260

0

Looking Stead

Pillar

NY 1715 1210

2927

1

869

0

Pillar

detour Pillar Rock

NY 1725 1235

2905

0.5

0

-22

Pillar Rock

Wind Gap

NY 1685 1175

2450

0.25

22

-477

Wind Gap

Scoat Fell

NY 1600 1135

2749

1

299

0

Scoat Fell

Red Pike

NY 1655 1055

2730

1

180

-199

Red Pike

Dore Head

NY 1747 9450

1250

0.75

0

-1480

Dore Head

Wasdale Head

NY 1863 0875

256

1.5

0

-994

6485

-6929

Totals for day

16


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

THE FISH INN The Fish Inn at Buttermere was formerly the home of Mary Robinson, the famous ‘Beauty of Buttermere’. She was married to John Hatfield, a bigamist and adventurer who, on Saturday, 3 September 1803, less than a year after their marriage, was hanged at Carlisle for forgery. He had been caught using a peer’s name to ‘frank’ letters for free transit by post. Mary, whose rustic charm was praised by poets and painters, become the heroine of many books and ballads, and later remarried an honest farmer after a public subscription was raised for her. Wordsworth refers to the story in The Prelude Book VII lines 288-315.

90


DAY 4

BUTTERMERE TO WASDALE

GRASMOOR AND CRUMMOCK Red Pike in Buttermere lies at the western end of the High Stile ridge that divides Buttermere from Ennerdale. The view from the summit is almost equal to that of Grasmoor, seen here across Crummock Water. One particular feature is the number of lakes, which appear in every direction across the wide vista.

91


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

RED PIKE SUMMIT The High Stile range begins in the west with Great Borne and continues along the ridge to Starling Dodd and Red Pike. One of the rarely stressed attributes of this ridge is its suitability for an introduction to ridge walking. As we pause on the summit we look north across Dodd to Newlands Hause, Robinson and Blencathra.

92


DAY 4

BUTTERMERE TO WASDALE

HIGH STILE From High Stile we look down on Bleaberry Tarn, The Saddle and Mellbreak. On the right the north western fell of Grasmoor towers high above Crummock Water.

93


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

NORTHERN FELLS FROM HIGH STILE Separated by a narrow ridge, the parallel valleys of Ennerdale and Buttermere are worlds apart in appearance. Ennerdale, where the Liza flows through large conifer plantations, is a barren valley, while the Vale of Buttermere has two lakes, Buttermere and Crummock. The central and highest point of the ridge, which includes Red Pike and High Crag, is High Stile at 2644 feet. Scarped by the precipitous crags of Bleaberry and Birkness Combs, the extensive panorama from the summit culminates on the distant Blencathra.

94


DAY 4

BUTTERMERE TO WASDALE

BURTNESS COMB Burtness Comb is well known by rock climbers for its variety of crags. From its summit we look north to Blencathra, Robinson, Dale Head and Fleetwith Pike.

From Gamlin End we have a high level viewpoint of the route over Haystacks, Brandreth, Gillercomb Head and Gable. 95


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

SCARTH GAP On descending High Crag we cross Scarth Gap, which is the principle pass from Buttermere to Ennerdale, the jagged outline of Haystacks before us.

Opposite page: HAYSTACKS Haystacks is a continuation of Fleetwith Pike, curving round to enclose Warnscale Bottom at the head of Buttermere. Its serrated top, one of the roughest in the district, is not a good place to be in mist, and should be avoided in bad weather because of its precipitous sides. This was Wainwright’s favourite mountain where his ashes were scattered by his widow Betty. In his memoir Ex-Fellwanderer he writes, ‘and if you, dear reader, should get a bit of grit in your boots as you are crossing Haystacks in the years to come, please treat it with respect. It might be me.’ 96


DAY 4

BUTTERMERE TO WASDALE

97


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

INNOMINATE TARN In a quiet and lonely place, set amongst the hummocks and craggy outcrops of the Haystacks plateau, lies the unnamed tarn – the Innominate. In its wild setting, it poses a fine foreground for Pillar and Great Gable across the valley. This was Wainwright’s favourite peak where his ashes were scattered by his wife Betty. There is a hill that stands for me Beyond the sunset and the sea, A ladder of light ascending; when I have crossed the evening ray and lost my comrade of white day. It beckons to me, bending a mountain-way of wind and rain to draw my feet from the dark plain:Where stars of slumber kindle on its crest, my hill, the high hill, from wandering to rest. Geoffrey Winthrop-Young

BLACKBECK TARN Cradled in a hollow and surrounded on all sides by rocky outcrops, Blackbeck Tarn is the largest of the tarns on Haystacks. It measures about 750 feet from north to south, and 300 feet east to west. The outlet stream from the tarn plunges in a series of cascades to Warnscale Bottom, 1000 feet below. 98


DAY 4

BUTTERMERE TO WASDALE

ENNERDALE AND BUTTERMERE FROM MOSES TROD All climbers and walkers who have visited Gable Crag from Wasdale or Buttermere have entered into the environment of Moses. A well defined track of uncertain antiquity runs up Gavel Neese from Wasdale, turns left at the prominent boulder known as ‘Moses’ Finger’, crosses Beckhead and the face of Gable Crag, rounds the shoulders of Green Gable and Brandreth, until, finally, it reaches the Honister Pass. The path, an old smugglers’ route, is known as ‘Moses Trod’. From our vantage point near Brandreth we look down on the Buttermere and Ennerdale valleys.

99


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

PILLAR AND ENNERDALE Looking west from Moses Trod we have one of the most commanding views of Pillar and Ennerdale. Beyond the Black Sail Pass, and beneath Looking Stead, the handiwork of the Forestry Commission becomes evident; dark conifers carpet the valley floor for almost six miles, while below our feet the river Liza snakes through the thick plantations and into Ennerdale Water.

100


DAY 4

BUTTERMERE TO WASDALE

GREEN GABLE – GREAT GABLE Green Gable, divided from Great Gable by Windy Gap, is probably visited only as a means of reaching its mightier neighbour. That said, the broad rounded peak offers tremendous views of the surrounding fells and the precipitous northern face of Great Gable. For the walker who is not ashamed to motor to the top of Honister, it is an easy ascent.

101


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

WINDY GAP It has been suggested that in Neolithic times, Windy Gap, the short shaley col between Green Gable and Great Gable, may have been used as a pack route ferrying stone axes from the factories in Langdale, to the coastal settlements where they were exported.

102


DAY 4

BUTTERMERE TO WASDALE

TOPHET BASTION Looking up the scree run of Great Hell Gate the solitary rock fang of Hell Gate Pillar acts as sentinel to the rock wall of Tophet Bastion.

103


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

NAPES NEEDLE Some of the most popular rock climbing in the district can be found on the ridges known as Napes below the summit of Great Gable. Situated at the western end of the Gable Traverse near Great Hell Gate is the dramatic pinnacle of Napes Needle. This isolated crag has done more than anything else to popularise British rock climbing. It was first climbed alone in June 1886 by W. P. Haskett-Smith, who repeated his climb in Easter 1936 at the age of seventy-six to celebrate the Jubilee. 104


DAY 4

BUTTERMERE TO WASDALE

SPHINX ROCK Continuing along the traverse we reach the aptly named Sphinx Rock, which gazes inscrutably over the mosaic patchwork of fields in Wasdale Head far below. 105


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

106


DAY 4

BUTTERMERE TO WASDALE

WASDALE FROM GREAT GABLE Great Gable has one distinct advantage over most of the Lakeland fells: it can be climbed direct from each of the five surrounding valleys, namely Wasdale, Eskdale, Langdale, Borrowdale and Buttermere. From the summit slopes we look down on a jumble of small fields half a mile below.

Opposite page: WESTMORLAND CAIRN Perched on a rock platform south of Great Gable summit is the Westmorland Cairn. It was built in 1876 by the Westmorland brothers to indicate what they regarded as Lakeland’s finest view, showing Wastwater to the southwest and the Scafell Pike range across the great gulf of Upper Wasdale to the southeast. From our viewpoint below Westmorland Crags we look eastwards to Sprinkling Tarn and the Langdale Pikes. 107


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

FELL AND ROCK MEMORIAL A short walk over the boulder-strewn plateau of Great Gable leads to the summit where the war memorial plaque of the Fell and Rock Climbing Club is set into the rocks facing north. This plaque of bronze, engraved with a relief map of the neighbouring peaks and the names of the twenty members killed in the Great War, was purchased by the club and presented to the nation through the National Trust. The peaks indicated are Allen Crags, Base Brown, Brandreth, Broad Crag, Green Gable, Great Gable, Great End, Grey Knott, Glaramara, Kirkfell, Lingmell and Seathwaite Fell. On 8 June 1924, these summit rocks were draped with a war-stained Union Jack that had flown from HMS Barnham at the Battle of Jutland. In the grey mist and softly falling rain, some 500 climbers, walkers and dales-folk assembled here to witness the unveiling of the bronze tablet. Each year on Remembrance Sunday hundreds of walkers gather for a silent ceremony on the summit. 108


DAY 4

BUTTERMERE TO WASDALE

BECK HEAD TARNS AND KIRKFELL FROM GREAT GABLE Kirkfell, isolated between Great Gable and Pillar, offers no easy ascent, and the track, which follows the remains of a fence line from Beck Head to the summit plateau, is a rough and tedious course. Overshadowed by the vast scree falls of Great Gable, the two tarns of Beck Head are on the col below. Fed by underground springs, they are within a few feet of each other, however, the smaller of the two is seasonal and cannot really by termed a true tarn. 109


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

BLACK SAIL PASS, SUMMIT COL The Black Sail Pass, linking Wasdale to Ennerdale, skirts the flanks of Kirkfell and winds gradually up to the col at 2443 feet, before descending into Ennerdale towards Cumbria’s remotest Youth Hostel, The Black Sail Hut.

110


DAY 4

BUTTERMERE TO WASDALE

ENNERDALE, FROM LOOKING STEAD The High Stile ridge begins in the west at Great Bourne, rising to the higher Red Pike, High Stile and High Crag, before descending to the col at Scarth Gap. From our viewpoint at Looking Stead we look across Ennerdale to the barren slopes of this long ridge.

111


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

ROBINSON CAIRN The cairn, which stands at the end of the high level route to the summit of Pillar, was built by members of the Fell and Rock Climbing Club on Saturday, 13 June 1908. This was as a memorial to John Wilson Robinson, a pioneer rock climber who, on 27 June 1882, in heavy mist and rain, made his first ascent of Pillar Rock. As a mountaineer he was magnificent at route finding; he had that rare gift of being able to read a mountain like a book. On a rock face near to the cairn is a bronze memorial tablet dedicated to him. PILLAR ROCK This isolated crag on the precipitous breast of Pillar mountain was once regarded as being unclimbable. The remoteness and inaccessibility of its summit has for over one hundred years held a fascination for both walker and climber. Early guidebooks clothed it with a certain amount of mystery and awe. The first known ascent was made in 1826 by John Atkinson, a shepherd from Croftfoot in Ennerdale, up the route now known as the ‘Old West Climb’, and by 1870 the first lady had scaled the ‘unclimbable’ Pillar. The discovery of the sixty-five foot Pendlebury Traverse on the east face of High Man was made by Richard Pendlebury, who, after walking from Keswick in his smoke room slippers, climbed directly up from the Slab; a painful experience which has yet to be repeated. The best and shortest approach is from Wasdale Head via the high level route. 112


DAY 4

BUTTERMERE TO WASDALE

ENNERDALE WATER AND PILLAR Ennerdale, the most westerly of all, is the longest and most desolate of the mountain valleys, and the only one not accessible by road. It is surrounded by the precipitous slopes of Kirkfell, Pillar, and Steeple on one side, and High Crag, High Stile and Red Pike on the other. At its head, rising above the dark conifer plantations, is the magnificent dome of Great Gable. From our viewpoint by the lake we can see the distinctive lines of Pillar Rock and Steeple. DORE HEAD AND STIRRUP CRAG On descending Red Pike in the direction of Wasdale, we come to Dore Head and Stirrup Crag, an awkward scramble up the northern extremity of Yewbarrow. Here the gentle slopes of Gosforth Crag and Over Beck contrast sharply with the spectacular views into Mosedale and Wasdale Head. 113


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

WASDALE HEAD, THE CAMP SITE In 1882, Wasdale, because of its proximity to the Central Fells, witnessed the birth of British rock-climbing; the Inn at Wasdale Head immediately became a base for pioneering climbers. It was often said that because of the boots and ropes abandoned in the entrance hall, the risk of breaking one’s neck was greater there than on the crags. In the late nineteenth century ‘Auld Will Ritson’ was the colourful innkeeper. When he chose he could speak English which anyone could follow, but he liked to confuse tourists with his immense dialect vocabulary. He often boasted that Wasdale had the highest mountain in England, the deepest lake, the smallest church and the biggest liar, the liar being himself. ‘The Lees Aa tell,’ he said, ‘isn’t malicious; they’re nobbut gert big exaggerations.’

114


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

115


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

116


WEDNESDAY 27 May 1931 WASDALE TO LANGDALE Forecast: Bright in the morning and afternoon turning to thunder and overcast in the evening. From

To

Map ref

Wasdale Head

Brown Tongue

NY 1990 0735

750

1.25

494

0

Brown Tongue

Scafell Pike

NY 2155 0725

3206

1.5

2456

0

Scafell Pike

(detour via Mickledore Chasm)

NY 2095 0690

2566

0.5

0

-640

Mickledore Chasm

Broad Crag

NY 2185 0754

2948

0.75

554

-156

Broad Crag

Great End

NY 2267 0838

2984

1

176

-140

Great End

Esk Hause

NY 2330 0805

2477

0.5

0

-507

Esk Hause

Esk Pike

NY 2367 0752

2830

0.5

353

0

Esk Pike

Ore Gap

NY 2405 0720

2600

0.25

0

-230

Ore Gap

Bowfell

NY 2447 0644

2750

0.5

150

0

Bowfell

Three Tarns

NY 2480 0605

2360

0.5

0

-390

Three Tarns

Shelter Crags

NY 2497 0533

2637

0.25

277

0

Shelter Crags

Crinkle Crags

NY 2486 0486

2733

0.25

96

0

Crinkle Crags

Cold Pike

NY 2628 0361

2259

1.5

120

-594

Cold Pike

Red Tarn

NY 2680 0370

1726

1

0

-533

Red Tarn

Pike O’ Blisco

NY 2711 0421

2286

0.5

560

0

Pike O’ Blisco

Blake Rigg

NY 2852 0390

1760

1.25

0

-526

Blake Rigg

Wall End

NY 2835 0550

354

1

0

-1406

Wall End

Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel

NY 2860 0615

325

0.5

0

-29

13.5

5236

-5151

Totals for day

Height

Mileage

Ascent

Descent


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

GREAT GABLE FROM DOWN IN THE DALE Great Gable, symbol of the National Park, Mecca of Lakeland walkers. Although Scafell Pike is the highest in England, it is generally accepted that there is no mountain in the Lake District worth climbing more than Great Gable, whose summit commands widespread panoramas. When viewed from Down the Dale it appears as a giant pyramid at the head of the lake, standing separate from the mountains on either side, but to see the fell at its best you must climb to the summit of Lingmell.

118


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

ST OLAF’S CHURCH, SOUTH WINDOW A short distance from the hotel, ringed by a thicket of ancient yews, stands St Olaf ’s, England’s smallest church. A small window in the south wall features an often-overlooked etching of Napes Needle, together with its biblical quotation. 119


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

THE SCREES It is difficult to describe one’s reaction on first seeing the Screes. They spread like a great fan, sheer from their precipitous cliffs, downward into the waters in which their reflection often carries for a further 258 feet. It is told that in the nineteenth century a buttress known as Wilson’s Horse, ‘a girt lump as big as Manchester town hall’, came crashing down into the lake with a mighty roar, and a great ‘tidal wave’ swept up the valley. The noise was so terrible at Wasdale Head that the end of the world was deemed to be nigh, and a special service was held in the church. Yet even this made little change to the contours of the screes.

120


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

WASDALE FROM LINGMELL GILL Almost entirely enclosed by the highest peaks in England, Wasdale, wild and austere, is the most inaccessible dale in the Lake District. The valley floor, intersected by stone walls, is a mosaic of grassy enclosures. From the lower slopes of Lingmell we look across the valley to Mosedale, the hamlet of Wasdale Head and the crags of Pillar.

121


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

BROWN TONGUE AND SCAFELL Standing at the foot of Brown Tongue, between the two branches of Lingmell Beck, you will find yourself staring upwards to the great craggy bastion of Scafell, towering above. At the top of the Tongue you will come to the boulder-strewn cove of Hollow Stones, between Lingmell and Black Crag, leading to the ridge of Mickledore.

MICKLEDORE AND SCAFELL CRAGS FROM LINGMELL Lingmell is a mountain on which to linger until evening, for it is then, with the sun illuminating its precipitous northern face, that Scafell becomes most striking. The crag on the left is Pulpit Rock, and across the connecting arête of Mickledore is the vertical fang of Pisgah. Next is the Pinnacle and Deep Ghyll Buttress, and finally Scafell Summit. 122


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

GREAT GABLE FROM LINGMELL ARÊTE Lingmell Crag lies less than a mile from Scafell. Its situation is dramatic and its views extensive. On reaching the summit, marked by a very tall and slender cairn at the edge of the arête, one’s eye is immediately drawn to the tremendous southern façade of Great Gable, rising with an illusion of sheerness that seems impossible to climb.

123


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

PIERS GHYLL Piers Ghyll owes its notoriety to an accident that occurred in the summer of 1921, when Mr Crump, a visitor from London, lost his way while walking in mist from Coniston to Wasdale Head. On 21 June he was unlucky enough to get into Piers Ghyll and sustain an injury to his leg. He was to remain there without food for the following twenty days until he was rescued by a party of rock-climbers attempting a descent of the Ghyll. After descending several small pitches, they found Mr Crump just below Bridge Rock, sitting sideways and gazing down the Ghyll. After a difficult descent using ropes and a stretcher, Mr Crump was successfully conveyed to the Wasdale Hotel. 124


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

MICKLEDORE AND HOLLOW STONES Beneath Pikes Crag lies the area known as Hollow Stones. This and the Mickledore ridge are overlooked by the dark buttress of Scafell Crag. This is a foolhardy route if the weather is not perfect. 125


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

PIKES CRAG FROM MICKLEDORE To the left of Mickledore, forming a shoulder of Scafell Pike, is Pikes Crag and Pulpit Rock; unfortunately this fine crag suffers from its proximity to Scafell. 126


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

SCAFELL CRAG FROM BROAD CRAG TARN According to W. Heaton-Cooper, the word ‘tarn’ is derived from the old Norse word ‘tjorn’, meaning a small lake or teardrop. There are in total almost 500 of these ‘teardrops’ scattered across the fells, and while a few are only a short distance from the roads, most lie hidden in the folds of the fells above the intake walls, nestling like jewels in the heart of an ancient castle. Noted for being the highest tarn in Lakeland, Broad Crag Tarn lies 2746 feet above sea level, half a mile from the summit of Scafell Pike. The broad flat shelf on which it is situated contrasts sharply with the profile of Scafell’s Central Buttress where some of the most difficult climbs are to be found. 127


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

BROAD STAND The first recorded descent from the summit of Scafell by way of Broad Stand was made accidentally in August 1802 by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, who at the time suffered a terrible palsy of the limbs. It has since been argued that it was not Broad Stand that Coleridge negotiated, but the nearby Mickledore Chimney, which is even more difficult. The route now may be well worn, but unless you are experienced it is wise to turn back; remember that under icy conditions the lower part of Broad Stand is an impossible route for the fell walker.

128


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

FOXES TARN In a hanging valley, just below the summit of Scafell, lies Foxes Tarn. This tiny pool, the smallest to be given a name, is the second highest tarn in Lakeland. From here we look across to the summit of Scafell Pike.

129


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

SCAFELL PIKE, SUMMIT SHELTER A stony track across a wilderness of grey rocks leads to the huge crumbling cairn of Scafell Pike, England’s highest peak. A tablet of Honister slate, built facing north into the cairn, records that the summit was given to the nation by Baron Leconfield in 1919 as a memorial to the men of Lakeland who fell in the Great War of 1914–1918.

130


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

SCAFELL PIKE, SUMMIT VIEW In August 1922, His Royal Highness the Prince Consort of the Netherlands, in the company of George Abraham, became the first member of a Royal Family to ascend Scafell Pike, the highest point in England. The view from the summit is one of mountains rather than lakes, with the shapely shoulder of Great Gable reaching down to Sty Head Tarn and Seathwaite Fell, then Green Gable, Base Brown and Glaramara, finally, to complete the picture, Derwent Water, Skiddaw and Blencathra.

131


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

LAMBFOOT DUB The little tarn of Lambfoot Dub is situated on a broad shelf below the prominent peak of Long Pike and can be reached from the ridge path between Broad Crag and Scafell Pike. The tarn, or dub, filled with sparkling clear water, owes its name to its irregular shape: that of a lamb’s foot. Across the valley to the northwest, Great Gable rises majestically against the skyline.

132


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

GREAT END AND THE CORRIDOR ROUTE The Corridor Route from Sty Head is the easiest way of approaching Scafell Pike. From Great Gable it can be seen ascending obliquely across the lower slopes of Great End and the northerly buttress of the Scafell massif, before crossing Skew Gill and Piers Ghyll on its way to the summit.

133


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

GREAT END, CENTRAL GULLY The view from the south exit of Central Gully, a thousand feet above the dark waters of Sprinkling Tarn, is one of the finest in Lakeland. The small sheet of water on Seathwaite Fell is High House Tarn. Grains Gill is on the right of the fell, winding its way through Borrowdale. 134


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

GREAT END, CENTRAL GULLY IN WINTER When approached from Grains Gill, Great End is an awesome sight; with its broken buttresses and deep cut gullies it towers above Sprinkling Tarn. When winter comes the snow lies deeper and longer than anywhere else, and the huge rift known as Central Gully, probably the most famous snow and ice climb in the Lake District, glistens white against a black buttress. 135


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

ESK HAUSE It is an easy walk from Great End to Esk Hause; well defined, it is one of the main arteries of the western fells. It is only in winter, when a mantle of snow covers the ground, that Esk Hause bursts into activity; here the snow lies deeper and longer than anywhere else.

136


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

ESK HAUSE CROSSROADS The famous crossroads at Esk Hause, frequented by thousands of fell walkers, is the Piccadilly Circus of Lakeland. For the strong walker it can be used a starting point; however, walks from here should not be undertaken lightly, especially in less than perfect weather, and ramblers should keep their compasses in hand. From the shelter, Esk Pike rises almost due south and the route is unmistakable, but the long high ridge of Bowfell cannot be seen until you ascend the rough slopes of Ewer Gap.

ORE GAP North west of Bowfell the main ridge drops to the depression of Ore gap, a narrow col between Esk Pike and Bowfell, where the ground is stained red due to the presence of hematite. On the north side, below the col and in a secluded hollow, is Angle Tarn. Beyond the Gap the ridge makes a stony ascent to the summit of Esk Pike. 137


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

BOWFELL SUMMIT CAIRN Bowfell’s summit is a mass of rocks and shattered boulders, a place for twisting ankles. Its main cairn and that of the southern summit are very small affairs, particularly when taking into account the readily available supply of building material.

138


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

BOWFELL SUMMIT VIEW Lying at the head of Langdale, Bowfell is one of the truly great mountains of the Lake District. From its summit we look across to Pike O’ Blisco and the Langdale Valley.

139


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

CRINKLE CRAGS Descending Bowfell we come to one of the finest mountain ridges in Britain. Crinkle Crags is a switchback over the rocky lumps that give the fell its name. The going is rough underfoot but there is only the wellknown ‘bad step’ to negotiate before descending to Red Tarn.

140


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

ROSSETT GILL Eroded by the boots of generations, Rossett Gill, one of the longest and most arduous ascents in the Lake District, climbs for almost 2000 feet in less than a mile to link Langdale and Scafell with the Wasdale fells. James Payn, when writing of his visits to the Lake District in 1865, caustically observed that the ascent ‘must be made on all fours.’ The knee-jarring descent into Langdale is a route for masochists only.

141


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

Across the wide gully of Mickle Door we see the bell shaped fell of Pike O’ Blisco and, in the far distance, Windermere. 142


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

BOWFELL FROM LONG TOP The highest summit of the Crinkles is Long Top at 2826 feet. On attaining it, the eye is led northwards over Shelter Crags to this classic view of Bowfell, about a mile distant. Its southern face, broken by a daunting series of gullies, is known as the Bowfell links.

143


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

THE BAD STEP Caution is needed on the descent southward from the summit. It is a steep path down a slope of loose scree to a chock-stone blocking the gully. The impasse is avoided and the gully regained by an awkward descent of rock wall, which deserves the name ‘The Bad Step’.

144


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

COLD PIKE SUMMIT Cold Pike lies between the Three Shires Stone on the Wrynose Pass and Crinkle Crags. The summit is three rocky humps, each with a cairn and sprinkled with boulders. From the main summit there is a magnificent view over Little Langdale to Windermere and the distant Pennines.

145


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

BLAKE RIGG SUMMIT At the eastern extremity of Pike O’Blisco, just below the rocky summit of Blake Rigg, a broad shelf provides a convenient platform for a magnificent vista over Little Langdale Tarn to Windermere.

146


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

LANGDALES FROM BLAKE RIGG If you climb the slopes of Blake Rigg above Blea Tarn, you are rewarded with a beautiful view of the Langdale Pikes.

147


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

COTTON GRASS On the higher fell, where rainfall and humidity are highest and the run-off water is hindered by impermeable rock, the land is covered with a blanket of peat, supporting bog vegetation. When the soil is especially acidic, a number of distinctive plants can be found such as Bilberry and Crowberry, and Purple Moor Grass and Cotton Grass in the wetter areas. 148


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

BLEA TARN AND LINGMOOR On the descent from Blake Rigg summit, Blea Tarn comes into view. In the foreground is Lingmoor, with the Helvellyn range on the horizon

149


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

RED TARN Above the Wrynose summit, on the gentle grassy slopes of the col dividing Cold Pike from Pike O’Blisco, Red Tarn, with its fringe of reeds, sits in splendid isolation. For its size it is extremely shallow, and its gentle contours contrast with the rugged crags of Great Knott, Crinkle Crags and Bowfell. In the nineteenth century, a whisky smuggler named Lanty Slee was supposed to have had an illicit still in the area.

150


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

BLEA TARN Described by Wordsworth as ‘a liquid pool that glittered in the sun’, this lovely tarn, fringed by juniper and rhododendron, lies in a hollow beneath Blake Rigg on the connecting road between Great and Little Langdale. It is a perfect setting from which to view the Langdale Pikes.

151


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

THE CRINKLES AND BOWFELL FROM PIKE O’ BLISCO The serrated crest of Crinkle Crags is a conspicuous feature of the Langdale skyline. The Crinkles, of which there are five, are masses of rough rock and precipitous buttresses seamed with gullies. They provide a popular and spectacular way to Bowfell, on the same ridge. From Pike O’Blisco we look across Oxendale to the Crinkles and Bowfell.

152


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

PIKE O’ BLISCO SUMMIT Pike O’ Blisco is a shapely mountain and from the summit cairn we have an impressive view of the head of Great Langdale. Across the valley are the Langdale Pikes, while to the west we see the shattered front of Crinkle Crags.

153


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

LANGDALE PIKES FROM LINGMOOR TARN On the eastern slopes of Lingmoor is a gem of a tarn. Lying in a hollow of bracken and heather, overgrown with reeds, Lingmoor Tarn and its large island are easily reached from either of the two Dungeon Ghyll Hotels. Lingmoor plays an important part in Wordsworth’s Excursion, for the abode of the Solitary lies at the base of the fell.

154


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

LINGMOOR TARN Lying in a boggy depression beneath Lingmoor Fell is the small tarn of Lingmoor. In the summertime it is covered with a profusion of water lilies.

BILBERRIES In the early summer the bilberry is the fruit of the rocks. Its tough stems and small green leaves protrude in unexpected places on the mountainside. The fruit is about the size of a blackcurrant: blueblack and covered with a bloom like that of a sloe. According to Wainwright, the distinction between bilberries and sheep droppings is that the former is the sweeter of the two. 155


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

SIDE PIKE AND THE LANGDALES For visitors making their first visit to Langdale, there is no better place to view the region than from the shapely summit of Side Pike at the western extremity of Lingmoor, on the ridge connecting with Pike O’Blisco. The direct ascent is by way of Bleatarn House, but an easier route is from the gate just beyond Wall End.

156


DAY 5 Wasdale to Langdale

LANGDALE MASSIF In the Lake District there are some forty mountains which are higher than the Langdale Pikes, but few leave such an indelible impression upon the mind. From Pike O’Blisco the entire east face of this mountain group is revealed in its true perspective. The thimble-shaped summit to the left is Pike O’Stickle, to the far right is Harrison Stickle, and between the two is the precipitous buttress of Gimmer Crag.

157


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

OLD DUNGEON GHYLL HOTEL Situated at the head of the Langdale Valley, the O.D.G. was formerly a farm and old coaching Inn. In the latter part of the nineteenth century, it became a Mecca for climbers such as W. Haskett-Smith and the Abraham brothers. 158


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

159


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

160


THURSDAY 28 May 1931 LANGDALE TO WINDERMERE Forecast: Cloudy and overcast all day. Rain by evening. From

To

Map ref

Height

Mileage

Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel

New Dungeon Ghyll Hotel

New Dungeon Ghyll Hotel

NY 2920 0650

315

0.5

0

-10

Dungeon Ghyll Force

NY 2900 0655

1200

0.5

885

0

Dungeon Ghyll Force

Pike O’Stickle

NY 2739 0735

2286

1

1086

0

Pike O’Stickle

Harrison Stickle

NY 2818 0739

2403

0.5

353

-236

Harrison Stickle

Pavey Ark

NY 2845 0790

2288

0.5

0

-115

Pavey Ark

Sergeant Man

NY 2864 0889

2300

1.5

12

0

Sergeant Man

High Raise

NY 2807 0953

2500

0.5

200

0

High Raise

Greenup Edge

NY 2860 1055

1581

0.75

0

-919

Greenup Edge

Calf Crag

NY 3016 1041

1699

1

149

-30

Calf Crag

Gibson Knott

NY 3220 0990

1290

1.25

0

-409

Gibson Knott

Helm Crag

NY 3266 0930

1306

0.75

16

0

Helm Crag

Grasmere

NY 3770 0765

223

2

0

-1083

Grasmere

Red Bank

NY 3390 0585

571

1.5

348

0

Red Bank

Loughrigg Terrace

NY 3405 0565

480

0.25

0

-91

Loughrigg Terrace

Pelter Bridge

NY 3635 0615

170

2

0

310

Pelter Bridge

Ambleside

NY 3770 0450

157

1

0

-27

3049

-2610

Totals for day Bus to Windermere

15.5

Ascent

Descent


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

NEW DUNGEON GHYLL HOTEL The New Dungeon Ghyll Hotel and the Sticklebarn Tavern have become popular meeting places for climbers and ramblers needing refreshment. Opposite page: DUNGEON GHYLL FORCE A few minutes walk from the New Hotel, in a deep rift between Thorn Crag and Harrison Stickle, is the waterfall from which it takes its name. Dungeon Ghyll, hidden from general view, should not be confused with the stream that issues from Stickle Tarn and plunges down the fellside in a series of cataracts to Langdale Beck. This is Mill Ghyll (Stickle Gill), passed on the ascent to Pavey Ark. According to Wordsworth, Dungeon Ghyll Force ‘is most beautiful when it forms a silver thread.’ 162


DAY 6 Langdale to Windermere

163


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LANGDALE FROM PIKE HOW The russet tints of autumn bracken contrast sharply with the verdant valley floor of Great Langdale, through which the beck meanders to Elterwater in the distance. The Low Wood Hotel can be seen on the edge of Lake Windermere.

164


DAY 6 Langdale to Windermere

HARRISON STICKLE FROM PIKE HOW From Harrison Stickle, a long grassy slope leads down past the ravine of Dungeon Ghyll to Pike How. In late October, before the onset of winter, the sheep are brought down from the high fell to lower pastures, surprising fell walkers on their way.

165


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LOFT CRAG Loft Crag, standing between Thorn Crag and Pike O’Stickle, is a prominent feature in the outline of the Langdale Pikes. Nearly all the views from the Windermere side give the impression that the Crag is part of Pike O’Stickle, but it is actually a separate peak jutting out from Harrison Stickle. The southeast face, known as Gimmer Crag, is popular with climbers as it provides the maximum exposure with the minimum risk. 166


DAY 6 Langdale to Windermere

HERDWICK SHEEP Native only to the Lake District, the Herdwick is an exceptionally hardy breed that is able to survive on the high fells all year round. In monastic times, the herd-wyck was the sheep farm itself, not the sheep. The origin of this unique breed is not known, but it is thought that the Norsemen brought this sheep with them. According to Canon Rawnsley, the medieval way of counting sheep was still in use in 1911, and the North American Indians apparently used similar numbers: 1, yan; 2, tyan; 3, tethera; 4, methera; 5, pimp; 6, sethera; 7, lethera; 8, hovera; 9, dorva; 10, dick; 11, yan-a-dick; 12, tyan-a-dick; 13, tetheraa-dick; 14, methera-a-dick; 15, bumfit; 16, yan-a-bumfit; 17, tyan-a-bumfit; 18, tethera-a-bumfit; 19, methera-a-bumfit; 20, giggot.

PIKE O’STICKLE Half a mile west of Harrison Stickle, the striated beehive shaped summit of Pike O’Stickle tops the steepest part of the Langdale face. In the rock face of the eastern Stone Shoot is a cave known as the Stone Axe Factory, where the Neolithic people made and polished axes that were widely exported. In exchange they received Yew, coppiced from mainland Europe and used in the making of longbows. Centuries later, an order by Henry VIII made it compulsory for the statesmen of the Lake District to plant a Yew tree by their homestead so that there would not be a lack of wood for making bows. 167


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

PIKE O’STICKLE, SUMMIT VIEW The summit of Pike O’Stickle yields an extensive panorama. Here we look towards Pinnacle Bield, Glaramara and Skiddaw.

168


DAY 6 Langdale to Windermere

HARRISON STICKLE FROM PIKE O‘STICKLE Harrison Stickle is the higher of the two summits being some eighty feet higher than Pike O’Stickle and separated from it by a distance of half a mile. The most popular and easiest ascent is via the path on the west side of Dungeon Ghyll, which approaches the summit from the northwest.

169


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

PAVEY ARK FROM HARRISON STICKLE Viewed from Harrison Stickle, Pavey Ark is seen in profile with its cliffs plunging down in a series of buttresses and gullies to Stickle Tarn.

170


DAY 6 Langdale to Windermere

PAVEY ARK The enormous bow-shaped crag of Pavey Ark with its fearsome precipices forms the south-facing part of the Langdale Pikes. The most convenient approach is to follow the tourist path up the left side of Mill Gill, the overflow from Stickle Tarn, which falls into Great Langdale. Running obliquely from right to left across the face is the notorious ascent known as Jack’s Rake; its line is easily traced above the dark waters of Stickle Tarn.

A covering of snow makes a postcard scene of Pavey Ark and Harrison Stickle. 171


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

SERGEANT MAN SUMMIT North of the Langdale Pikes, a long undulating ridge over high fells takes us in the direction of Keswick. Between Pavey Ark and Greenup Edge a small series of spurs and valleys lead on towards Grasmere. From the summit we look towards the Scafells and Great Gable.

THE LANGDALE VALLEY Like Borrowdale, Langdale rivals in the popularity stakes with visitors to the Lake District. It is primarily a walkers’ and climbers’ valley. A narrow road, sandwiched between drystone walls, winds its way through the valley to Little Langdale. To the west and north an effectual barrier is created by the serrated edge of Crinkle Crags; the Crags, Bowfell, and the Langdale Pikes all display their full stature to the greatest advantage. Youdell Tarn, lying on the western side of the ridge separating Great Langdale from Easedale below Castle How, was reputed to contain trout in years gone by, but with the continual encroachment of reeds this now seems unlikely. 172


DAY 6 Langdale to Windermere

HIGH RAISE SUMMIT LOOKING TOWARDS BOWFELL High Raise is the moorland plateau that stretches north from the Langdale Pikes to Greenup Edge. On some maps it is described as High White Stones, which is a little to the north. High Raise is generally considered to be the centre of the Lake District. 173


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

GREENUP EDGE LOOKING TO HELVELLYN AND FAIRFIELD Greenup Edge is the depression between Ullscarf and High Raise. From the summit the view looks over the upper part of the Wythburn Valley down to Helm Crag and Grasmere.

CALF CRAG SUMMIT The northern rim of Far Easedale is a short ridge walk running down from Calf Crag over Gibson Knott to Helm Crag. Three summits are traversed over a distance of two miles. The summit of Calf Crag looks down on the desolate Wythburn Valley, probably the boggiest valley in the Lake District. 174


DAY 6 Langdale to Windermere

GIBSON KNOTT SUMMIT From the summit of Gibson Knott we look along the ridge to Helm Crag. 175


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

HELM CRAG, LADY AT THE PIANO Above Grasmere, northwest of the village, a steep fell famous for its distinctive summit rocks dominates the scene. This is Helm Crag, lair of the mountain fox. The curiously shaped crags that have given Helm Crag its notoriety are about 200 yards apart. When viewed from Dunmail Raise the most prominent rock is the Howitzer or Mortar, which is situated at the northwest end of the ridge. At the southeast end, seen from the Swan Hotel, we have the Lion and the Lamb, or as Wordsworth wrote, ‘the ancient woman sitting on Helm Crag’, known colloquially as ‘the old woman playing the organ’. The best views from the summit are over Grasmere.

Opposite page: HELM CRAG, HOWITZER Victorian tourists gave names to the rocky profiles of Helm Crag, overlooking Grasmere. This summit is a pointing finger at the northwest end of Helm Crag, known as the Howitzer or Mortar. 176


DAY 6 Langdale to Windermere

177


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

GRASMERE, WORDSWORTH’S GRAVE Grasmere today is hardly the tranquil village loved by the poets Wordsworth and De Quincey. Described by Wordsworth as ‘the loveliest spot that man hath found’, the village of Grasmere lies snugly between the lake and surrounding fells which slope up from its wooded shores. A simple upright slate slab in the south corner of St Oswald’s churchyard marks the resting place of William Wordsworth. His wife Mary and daughter Dora lie buried with him, as well as several other family members. Tradition has it that the origins of the church date back to the seventh century, when Oswald, King of Northumbria, gave his name to an old well here and founded a chapel. Wordsworth himself planted the yew trees in the churchyard.

178


DAY 6 Langdale to Windermere

GRASMERE, RED BANK This view across Grasmere from Loughrigg Terrace is one of the most popular in the Lake District. It shows the lake in the foreground and the village behind against the backcloth of Helm Crag and Steel Fell. Dorothy Wordsworth wrote in her journal, ‘Grasmere looked so beautiful that my heart almost melted away.’

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LOUGHRIGG FELL Although only 1100 feet high, few mountains give such pleasure as Loughrigg. With its confusion of grassy hummocks and small tarns, it covers a vast acreage between the Rothay and Brathay valleys. The principle summit commands uninterrupted views in all directions and is easily recognised by the Ordnance Survey column next to a small cairn. Low on the side of the fell is the famous path called Loughrigg Terrace, which can easily be reached from the top of Red Bank, a minor road linking Grasmere to the Langdale Valley.

180


DAY 6 Langdale to Windermere

THE BIG CAVE, LOUGHRIGG Opposite the islands in Rydal Water is a huge cavern, whose entrance can be seen from the far side of the lake. The cave is not natural, but part of an abandoned quarry working. According to Wainwright, ‘the whole population of Ambleside could shelter here, although many would be standing in water.’

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LOUGHRIGG TARN Loughrigg Tarn is situated on the west side of Loughrigg Fell, and, along with the surrounding land, is the property of the National Trust. Wordsworth’s description of this tarn is still relevant today: ‘It has a margin of green firm meadows, of rocks and rocky woods, a few reeds here, a little company of water lilies there.’ The tarn was once known as ‘Diana’s Looking Glass’.

STEPPING STONES After descending from Loughrigg Fell, a pleasant diversion back to Ambleside can be made through the attractive surroundings of Rothay Park by way of the Stepping Stones across the River Rothay at Field Foot. 182


DAY 6 Langdale to Windermere

RYDAL WATER Constricted between the rocky fell of Nab Scar in the north, and the extensive plateau of Loughrigg Fell in the south, is the smallest of all the lakes. It is known today as Rydal Water, but had previously been called Routhermere or Rothaymere, after the river that flows through it. On leaving the parsonage in Grasmere, Wordsworth went to live in Rydal Mount, a house close to Rydal Water; here, for thirty-seven years, he wrote almost half the poems he published. 183


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR

STOCKGHYLL CAFÉ, AMBLESIDE Time for Fish and Chips, note the nailed boots. 184


Afterword Although the small party did not complete the programme as planned, they did follow it for most of the way. The map used by A.W. for the tour was, I believe, the half inch Bartholomew Tourist and Cycle Map of Westmorland. The close contour lines of this map are at times impossible to follow, and this would explain the discrepancies found in his schedule. The heights and references are taken from the four OS sheets of 1979 that I used in 1991, and the data is meant only as a guide. These were the last maps to be issued using the old imperial measure. Today’s walker with a GPS in his hand will find my figures inaccurate too; this is the extent that OS mapping has progressed in the two hundred years it’s been around. I’m not sure that A.W. would have agreed with it; like me, he discovered the landscape by map and compass. A.W. tells us that the tour would be arduous, but not even he could realise the magnitude of this understatement. The party had no experience of high level fell walking at all, and their equipment, quite probably moleskin shorts combined with boots or shoes and a poncho or raincoat kept in a Bergen rucksack, matched this. It was a world away from the equipment of today. On day two, after a wet day of ridge walking, they arrived at Calfhow Pike. Across the valley the Saddleback ridge of Blencathra beckoned them, but their schedule told them that they were only half way through the day and had ten miles and 3000 feet of ascent before them. Keswick and a hot meal lay six hours away. We will never know what thoughts passed through their heads when they reached this point; the only one that I had was of despair. To drop to the valley floor and then be confronted by Blencathra was something I didn’t want to think about. It was early evening when I reached Threlkeld; the day had been long and hard and relief swept over me as I saw Maggie step from the car. In 1931 the weather in May was decidedly wet; in fact it was the wettest May since 1925. The monthly totals for precipitation were well above normal for all areas, with the largest of these falls, accompanied by thunderstorms, coming down on the 23rd, 24th and 28th. For A.W. this must have been heartbreaking; it’s no surprise when Maudsley tells us that they were forced to retire to Troutbeck on their first day. What he does not say is that this retreat was accompanied by thunder and lightning. The second and third days were no better, and the party again had to change the route, missing out Blencathra and Grasmoor. When they awoke in Buttermere on day four their spirits must have soared; it was a clear day and their only deviation was to miss out Pillar. As they set out from Wasdale on the fifth day they were seeing the fells at their best. Unfortunately it was to be short lived; on the sixth day it turned cloudy once more and the intrepid wanderers must have been pleased that it was their last day. For whatever reason, A.W. did not keep any notes on this, his ‘Grand Tour’. He does not mention it in either of his two autobiographies. We do know that during that week the cloud was of the Cumulus or Cumulonimbus variety, with its base around one thousand feet, and at times visibility was just two miles. In these conditions photography would have been almost impossible. Black and white film had a rating of twenty-eight ASA in those far off days of 1931; camera settings were basic and exposures would have been made with the help of a ‘Welcome’ exposure calculator. Of the photographs taken that week, only three have survived and their locations tell us that they were taken on the good days of Tuesday and Wednesday. It is my belief that the deviations made by the party were due to the weather conditions, and for no other reason; given the right weather, an experienced fell walker could complete this tour in six days. It would be tiring, but, in the words of A.W., well worth the effort.


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR The eight months that I spent working on ‘The Tour’ left many memories: snow falling when I reached the first Crinkle on 10 July; an electrical storm whilst on the summit of Cold Pike in August; the exhaustion felt on reaching Threlkeld. My notebook tells me that I ascended Grasmoor eight times within the first fourteen days of June, but it was not until February that I got the shot I wanted. It was events such as these that made the tour what it was: an adventure. A.W. was admitted to the Kendal Green Hospital on the evening of 7 January 1991; he died at 6pm on Sunday, 20 January. It was only then that I thought of all the unasked questions.

The Author: Threlkeld, day two

186


LOST TOUR – SCHEDULE OF PHOTOGRAPHS 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47

MARDALE, 1931 (Cars) – CONTENTS WAINWRIGHT(Dales) – INTRODUCTION DUN BULL INN, MARDALE 1931 ORREST HEAD DUBBS RESERVOIR TROUTBECK (SUMMER) TROUTBECK (WINTER) GARBURN PASS YOKE SUMMIT RAINSBORROW CRAG, KENTMERE KENTMERE VALLEY ILL BELL SUMMIT FROSWICK FROM ILL BELL SCOTS RAKE THORNTHWAITE BEACON HIGH STREET FROM THORNTHWAITE HIGH STREET SUMMIT RACECOURSE HILL, HIGH STREET HIGH STREET DESCENT MARDALE THE KNOTT ANGLE TARN DEEPDALE FROM ANGLE TARN PIKES DESCENT INTO PATTERDALE THRESHTHWAITE MOUTH HARTSOP FROM PASTURE BECK THE KIRKSTONE PATTERDALE GRASTHWAITEHOWE FROM ST SUNDAY CRAG HELVELLYN AND CATSTYCAM STRIDING EDGE STRIDING EDGE AND RED TARN GOUGH MEMORIAL HELVELLYN SUMMIT (SUMMER) HELVELLYN SUMMIT (WINTER) ST SUNDAY FROM HELVELLYN SWIRRAL EDGE HELVELLYN LOW MAN THIRLMERE WHITE SIDE CALFHOW CLOUGH HEAD SUMMIT APPROACHING WALLTHWAITE CLOUGH HEAD FROM KESWICK STONE CIRCLE BLECATHRA FROM TEWITT TARN SCALES WHITE HORSE INN SHARP EDGE

48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89

BLENCATHRA SUMMIT WHITE CROSS THRELKELD FROM BLEASE FELL THRELKELD, HORSE AND FARRIER INN KESWICK CATBELLS FROM OVERSIDE WOOD RHODODENDRONS CATBELLS THE JAWS OF BORROWDALE DERWENT WATER AND SKIDDAW FROM MAIDEN MOOR MAIDEN MOOR PLATEAU CAUSEY PIKE DALE HEAD FROM EEL CRAGS HIGH SPY SUMMIT EEL CRAGS FROM DALE HEAD TARN DALE HEAD CAIRN DALE HEAD FROM HINDSCARTH HONISTER PASS ROBINSON SUMMIT SUMMIT VIEW TO CLOUGH HEAD ROBINSON ARD CRAGS RIDGE SAIL SUMMIT EEL CRAG SUMMIT TRIG POINT GRASMOOR SUMMIT WANDOP FROM WHITELESS PIKE WHITELESS PIKE FROM THIRDGILL HEAD CRUMMOCK FROM SADDLE GATE GRASMOOR FROM LANTHWAITE GREEN CRUMMOCK AND RANNERDALE KNOTTS ST JAMES’ CHURCH, BUTTERMERE WAINWRIGHT MEMORIAL BUTTERMERE THE FISH HOTEL GRASMOOR AND CRUMMOCK WATER FROM RED PIKE LOOKING NORTH FROM RED PIKE SUMMIT BLEABERRY TARN FROM HIGH STILE NORTHERN FELLS FROM HIGH STILE VIEW FROM BURTNESS COMB THE DAY AHEAD FROM GAMLIN END SCARTH GAP AND HAYSTACKS HAYSTACKS


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR 90 INNOMINATE TARN 91 BLACKBECK TARN 92 ENNERDALE, BUTTERMERE FROM MOSES TROD 93 PILLAR AND ENNERDALE 94 GREEN GABLE, GREAT GABLE 95 WINDY GAP, GREAT GABLE 96 TOPHET BASTION, GREAT GABLE 97 NAPES NEEDLE, GREAT GABLE 98 SPHINX ROCK, GREAT GABLE 99 WESTMORLAND CAIRN 100 WASDALE FROM GREAT GABLE 101 FELL AND ROCK MEMORIAL 102 KIRKFELL AND PILLAR FROM GREAT GABLE 103 BLACK SAIL PASS FROM BECK HEAD TARN 104 ENNERDALE FROM LOOKING STEAD 105 ROBINSON CAIRN 106 PILLAR ROCK 107 PILLAR FROM ENNERDALE WATER 108 WASDALE HEAD FROM DORE HEAD 109 WASDALE INN CAMPSITE 110 GREAT GABLE FROM DOWN IN THE DALE 111 ST OLAF’S CHURCH SOUTH WINDOW 112 THE WASDALE SCREES 113 WASDALE HEAD FROM BROWN TONGUE 114 SCAFELL FROM BROWN TONGUE 115 SCAFELL FROM LINGMELL 116 GREAT GABLE FROM LINGMELL 117 PIERS GHYLL, SCAFELL 118 MICKLEDORE FROM HOLLOW STONES 119 PIKES CRAG 120 SCAFELL CRAG FROM BROAD CRAG TARN 121 BROAD STAND 122 FOXES TARN, SCAFELL 123 SCAFELL SUMMIT SHELTER 124 SUMMIT VIEW SCAFELL PIKE 125 LAMBFOOT DUB, SCAFELL 126 GREAT END AND THE CORRIDOR ROUTE 127 VIEW FROM CENTRAL GULLY 128 WINTER IN CENTRAL GULLY 129 DESCENT FROM GREAT END 130 GREAT END FROM ESK HAUSE 131 ORE GAP 132 BOWFELL SUMMIT CAIRN 133 THE VIEW FROM BOWFELL 134 CRINKLE CRAGS AND THREE TARNS 135 ROSSETT GILL, LANGDALE 136 MICKLE DOOR GULLY

188

137 138 139 140 141 142 143 144 145 146 147 148 149 150 151 152 153 154 155 156 157 158 159 160 161 162 163 164 165 166 167 168 169 170 171 172 173 174 175 176 177 178 179 180 181 182

BOWFELL FROM LONG TOP THE BAD STEP THE SUMMIT OF COLD PIKE BLAKE RIGG LANGDALE PIKES FROM BLAKE RIGG COTTON GRASS ON BLAKE RIGG BLEA TARN AND LINGMOOR RED TARN BLEA TARN BOWFELL FROM PIKE O’ BLISCO PIKE O’ BLISCO SUMMIT LANGDALE PIKES FROM LINGMOOR TARN WATER LILIES ON LINGMOOR TARN BILBERRIES IN LANGDALE SIDE PIKE AND THE LANGDALE PIKES THE LANGDALE MASSIF OLD DUNGEON GHYLL HOTEL WALKERS PASSING THE NEW DUNGEON GHYLL HOTEL DUNGEON GHYLL FORCE LANGDALE FROM PIKE HOW HARRISON STICKLE FROM PIKE HOW LOFT CRAG HERDWICK SHEEP PIKE O’STICKLE PIKE O’ STICKLE SUMMIT VIEW HARRISON STICKLE FROM PIKE O‘STICKLE PAVEY ARK FROM HARRISON STICKLE PAVEY ARK IN AUTUMN PAVEY ARK IN WINTER GARB SERGEANT MAN SUMMIT THE LANGDALE VALLEY AND YOUDELL TARN HIGH RAISE SUMMIT FAIRFIELD FROM GREENUP EDGE CALF CRAG SUMMIT HELM CRAG FROM GIBSON KNOTT HELM CRAG ROCK FORMATION: LADY AT THE PIANO HELM CRAG ROCK FORMATION: THE HOWITZER WORDWORTH’S GRAVE, GRASMERE RED BANK, GRASMERE WINDERMERE FROM LOUGHRIGG FELL THE BIG CAVE, LOUGHRIGG FELL LOUGHRIGG TARN STEPPING STONES, RIVER ROTHAY RYDAL WATER STOCKGHYLL CAFÉ AMBLESIDE AUTHOR AT THRELKELD


index A Abraham, George, 131, 158 Allen Crags, 108 Ambleside, 10, 28, 48, 161, 181,182, 184 Angle Tarn, 30, 31, 137 Angle Tarn Pikes, 15 Applethwaite Common, 18 Arthur’s Pike, 21 Atkinson Pike, 56 Atkinson, John, 112 B Bad Step, Langdale, 144 Barnham, HMS, 108 Base Brown, 108, 131 Beauty of Buttermere, 90 Beck Head, 109 Beck Head Tarn, 109 Big Cave, 181 Bilberries, 155 Birkhouse Moor, 40, 42 Birkness Comb, 94 Black Crag, 122 Black Sail Hut, 110 Black Sail Pass, 9, 89, 100 Blackbeck Tarn, 89, 98 Blackmere, 48 Blake Rigg, 117, 146, 147, 149, 151 Blea Tarn, 147, 149, 151 Bleaberry, 84, 93 Bleaberry Comb, 94 Bleaberry Tarn, 84, 93 Blease Fell, 57 Blencathra, 9, 37, 53, 54, 55, 56, 58, 66, 74, 92, 94, 95, 131, 185 Boardale Hause, 31 Boardale Path, 30 Borrowdale, 9, 64, 65, 67, 70, 73, 107, 134, 172 Bowfell, 16, 79, 117, 137, 138, 139, 140, 143, 150, 152, 172, 173 Brackenthwaite Fell, 82 Brandreth, 89, 95, 99, 108 Braythay, 180 Bridge Rock, 124 Brigantes, 17 Brigham, 84 Broad Crag, 108, 117, 132 Broad Crag Tarn, 127 Broad Stand, 128 Brovacum, 28 Brown Tongue, 117, 122

Burtness Comb, 95 Buthar, 83 Buttermere, 9, 12, 73, 75, 80, 83, 84, 86, 89, 90, 91, 94, 96, 99, 107, 186

Dubbs Reservoir, 16, 17 Dungeon Ghyll Force, 161, 162 Dungeon Ghyll Hotel, 117, 154, 158, 160, 162 Dunmail Raise, 176

C Calf Crag, 161, 174 Calfhow Pike, 9, 37, 49, 185 Carles, 52 Castle Crag, 65 Castle How, 172 Castlerigg Stone Circle, 52 Cat Bield, 63 Catbells, 63, 64, 66, 67 Catstycam, 40 Caudale Moor, 16, 18, 32, 33 Causey Pike, 68, 71 Central Buttress, 127 Central Gully, 134, 135 Chapel Bridge, 29 Claife Heights, 16 Clough Head, 49, 50, 51, 52, 74 Cockley Beck, 7 Cold Pike, 117, 145, 150, 186 Coledale Fells, 82 Coleridge, Samuel Taylor, 66, 128 Coniston Old Man, 16, 124, Convention, Keswick, 62 Corridor Route, 133 Cotton Grass, 148 Counting Sheep, 167 Crinkle Crags, 16, 117, 140, 145, 150, 152, 172 Croftfoot, 112 Crowberry, 148 Crummock Water, 75, 83, 91, 93 Crump, Mr, 124 Cumberland County Council

E Easedale, 172 Eel Crags, 61, 69, 70, 71 Elizabethan Era, 58, 62 Ennerdale, 91, 94, 96, 99, 100, 110, 111, 112, 113 Ennerdale Water, 100, 113 Esk Hause, 136 Esk Pike, 117, 137

D Dale Head, 9, 69, 72, 75, 95 Dale Head Cairn, 71 Dale Head Tarn, 71 Dalton, Millican, 65 De Quincy, 41 Deep Ghyll Buttress, 122 Deepdale, 31 Derwent Water, 62, 63, 64, 65, 66, 131 Dodd, 92 Dore Head, 89, 114 Down in the Dale, 118

F Fairfield, 16, 46, 174 Far Easedale, 175 Fell and Rock Club, 108, 113 Fell ponies, 24 Field Foot, 182 Fish Inn, 75, 90 Fleetwith Pike, 86, 95, 96 Foxes Tarn, 129 Froswick, 15, 18, 19, 23, 24 G Gable Crag, 99 Gable Traverse, 104 Galava, 28 Gamlin End, 95 Garburn Pass, 15, 18, 22, 24 Gasgale Gill, 82 Gavel Neese, 99 Gibson Knott, 161, 174, 175 Gillercomb Head, 95 Gimmer Crag, 157, 166 Glaramara, 108, 131, 169 Glenderaterra Beck, 53 Goosemire, 29 Gosforth Crag, 113 Gough Memorial, 42 Gough, Charles, 41, 42 Grains Gill, 134, 135 Grange in Borrowdale, 65 Grasmere, 161, 172, 174, 176, 178, 179, 180, 183 Grassthwaitehow, 37, 39 Great Borne, 92 Great End, 79, 108, 117, 133, 134, 135, 136 Great Gable, 16, 27, 79, 89, 98,


WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR 101, 102, 104, 107, 108, 109, 113, 118, 123, 131, 132, 133, 172 Great Hell Gate, 103, 104 Great Knott, 150 Great Langdale, 151, 153, 164, 171, 173 Great War, 65, 108, 130 Green Gable, 89, 99, 101, 102, 108, 131 Greenup Edge, 161, 172, 173, 174 Greta, River, 62 Grey Knott, 108 Grisedale, 9, 38, 46, 75 H Harrison Stickle, 157, 161, 162, 165, 166, 167, 169, 170, 171 Hartsop, 9, 28, 32, 33 Haskett-Smith, Walter Parry, 104, 158, Haweswater, 29 Hawse End, 67 Haystacks, 2, 85, 86, 89, 95, 96, 98 Heaton-Cooper, W., 127 Helm Crag, 161, 174, 175, 176, 179 Helvellyn, 30, 31, 37, 38, 40, 41, 42, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 54, 149, 174 Helvellyn Lower Man, 47 Henry VIII, 167 Herdwick Sheep, 18, 167 High Crag, 89, 94, 96, 111, 113 High House Tarn, 134 High Man, 112 High Raise, 161, 173, 174 High Spy, 70, 69 High Stile, 75, 76, 79, 80, 89, 91, 92, 93, 94, 111, 113 High Street, 15, 17, 19, 20, 23, 24, 26, 27, 28, 30, 38 High White Stones, 173 Hindle, Bert, 44 Hird, Hugh, 24 Hollow Stones, 122, 125 Honister Crag, 73 Honister Hause, 72 Honister Pass, 73, 86, 99 Horse Racing, 28 Howitzer, 176 Howtown, 38 I Ill Bell, 9, 15, 18, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24 Innominate Tarn, 85, 98

190

J Jack’s Rake, 171 Jaws of Borrowdale, 65 Jutland, Battle of, 108 K Kendal, 8, 18, 20, 185, 192 Kentmere, 18, 20 Kentmere Valley, 21, 24 Kepple Cove, 40 Keswick, 9, 12, 37, 48, 61, 62, 64, 71, 112, 172, 185 Keswick Moot Hall, 62 Keswick, Vale of, 49, 66 Kidsey Pike, 38 Kirkfell, 79, 108, 109, 110, 113 Kirkstone, 9, 32, 34 Knott, 28, 30 Knott Rigg, 61, 76 L Lady at the Piano, Helm Crag, 176 Lambfoot Dub, 132 Langdale, 10, 12, 79, 102, 107, 117, 139, 141, 152, 156, 161, 164 Langdale Beck, 162 Langdale Pikes, 16, 107, 147, 151, 153, 154, 156, 157, 166, 167, 171, 173, 174 Langdale Valley, 139, 158, 172, 180 Lanthwaite Green, 82 Lanty Slee, 150 Leathes Water, 48 Leconfield, Baron, 130 Leeming, John, 44 Lingmell, 108, 118, 121, 122, 123 Lingmell Beck, 122 Lingmoor, 149, 154, 156 Lingmoor Tarn, 154, 155 Linton, E. L., 68 Lion and the Lamb, 176 Little Langdale Tarn, 145, 146, 151, 173 Little Town, 63 Liza, River, 94, 100 Loft Crag, 166 Long Meg, 52 Long Pike, 132 Looking Stead, 89, 100, 111 Loughrigg Fell, 180, 182, 183 Loughrigg Tarn, 182 Loughrigg Terrace, 161, 179, 180 Low Hartsop, 28, 32 Low Wood Hotel, 164 Loweswater, 74, 81, 86

M Maiden Moor, 61, 66, 67, 69 Manchester Corporation, 29, 48 Mardale, 4, 28, 29 Marriage Custom, 58 McHaffie, Ray, 71 Mellbreak, 75, 86, 93 Memorial Tablets, 42, 44, 85, 108, 112, 130 Mickle Door, Langdale, 142 Mickledore, 117, 122, 125, 126 Mickledore Chimney, 128 Mill Ghyll, 162 Mosedale, 51, 113, 122 Moses’ Finger, 99 Moses Trod, 99, 100 N Nab Scar, 183 Naddle Fell, 53 Napes Needle, 104, 119 National Park, 118 National Trust, 108, 182 Netherlands, Prince Consort, 131 Newlands Hause, 61, 92 Newlands Valley, 63, 64, 69, 72 North American Indians, 167 North, Christopher, 16 O Old West Climb, 112 Ordnance Survey (OS), 28, 185 Ore Gap, 117, 137 Orrest Head, 11, 15, 16 Over Beck, 113 Oxendale, 152 P Packhorse, 18, 38 Pasture Beck, 28, 32 Patterdale, 9, 12, 15, 30, 31, 32, 33, 37, 38, 39, 40, 42 Pavey Ark, 161, 162, 170, 171, 172 Peewits, 53 Pendlebury Traverse, 112 Pendlebury, Richard, 112 Penrith, 28, 58 Piers Ghyll, 124, 133 Pike How, 164, 165 Pike O’Blisco, 117, 139, 142, 146, 150, 152, 153, 156, 157, 168 Pike O’Stickle, 157, 161, 166, 167, 168, 169 Pikes Crag, 125, 126 Pillar Rock, 89, 112, 113 Pinnacle, 122


index Pinnacle Bield, 168 Pisgah, 122 Potter, Beatrix, 18, 63 Pulpit Rock, 122, 126 Purple Moss Grass, 150 R Racecourse Hill, 28 Rainsborrow Crag, 20 Rannerdale Knotts, 83 Rawnsley, Canon, 83, 167 Red Bank, 161, 179, 180 Red Pike, Buttermere, 76, 89, 91, 92, 94 Red Pike, Wasdale, 89, 111, 113 Red Screes, 16, 34 Red Tarn, Helvellyn, 40, 42 Red Tarn, Langdale, 117, 140, 150 Remembrance Sunday, 108 Rhododendrons, 64 Riggindale, 28 Ritson, Will, 114 Robinson, 9, 61, 75, 92, 95 Robinson Cairn, 74, 112 Robinson, Harold, 56 Robinson, John Wilson, 112 Robinson, Mary, 90, Roman Road, 24, 26, 28 Romans, 17 Rossett Gill, 141 Rothay, 180 Rothay Park, 182 Ruskin, 48, 66 Rydal Mount, 183 Rydale Water, 181, 183 S Saddle Gate, 81 Saddleback, 53, 185 Sail, 61, 75, 77 Scafell, 16, 27, 79, 122, 123, 126, 127, 128, 129, 133, 141, 172 Scafell Crag, 123, 125, 127 Scafell Pike, 107, 117, 118, 126, 127, 129, 130, 131, 132, 133 Scales Fell, 37, 54 Scales Tarn, 37, 54 Scarth Gap, 89, 96, 111 Scots Rake, 24 Scott, Walter, 42 Screes, Wasdale, 120 Seathwaite Fell, 131, 134, 108 Secret Valley, 83 Sergeant Man, 161, 172 Sharp Edge, 37, 54 Shelley, Percy, 66

Shelter Crags, 117, 143 Side Pike, 156 Sidgewick, H., 7 Skew Gill, 133 Skiddaw, 49, 53, 62, 66, 131, 168 Solitary, The, 154 Sour Howes, 21 Sour Milk Ghyll, 83, 84 Southey, Robert, 66 Southwaite Fell Sphinx Rock, 105 Sprinkling Tarn, 107, 134, 135 St Cuthbert, 66 St Herbert, 66 St James’ Church, 84 St John, Vale of, 49 St Olaf ’s Church, 119 St Oswald, 178 St Patrick, 38 St Sunday Crag, 39, 46 Starling Dodd, 92 Staughan, Mr, 56 Steel Fell, 179 Steeple, 113 Sticklebarn Tavern, 162 Stickle Tarn, 162, 170, 171 Stirrup Crag, 113 Stone Axe Factory, 102, 167 Straits of Riggindale, 28 Striding Edge, 37, 41, 42, 45, 46, 47, 54 Sty Head, 133 Sty Head Tarn, 131 Swirrel Edge, 40, 41, 42 T Tarns, 15, 30, 31, 40, 42, 53, 54, 71, 84, 85, 89, 93, 98, 107, 109, 117, 127, 129, 131, 132, 134, 135, 137, 140, 146, 147, 149, 150, 151, 154, 155, 162, 170, 171, 172, 180, 182 Tewitt Tarn, 53 Thirdgill Head, 80 Thirlmere, 48, 49 Thorn Crag, 162, 166 Thornthwaite, 9, 16, 18 Thornthwaite Crag, 15, 22, 23, 24, 32 Thorthwaite Beacon, 19, 23, 24, 26 Three Shires Stone, 145 Threlkeld, 37, 53, 56, 57, 58, 185, 186 Tiggywinkle, Mrs, 63 Tophet Bastion, 103, 122 Troutbeck, 9, 17, 18, 22, 32, 185

Troutbeck Park, 9, 18, 32 Troutbeck Tongue, 17, 18 U Ullscarf, 174 Ullswater, 21, 34, 38, 39 V Vinandr, 16 W Wainwright, Alfred, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, 32, 85, 96, 98, 155, 181, 185, 186, 192 Wall End, 117, 156 Wallthwaite, 37, 51 Wandop, 75 Warnscale Bottom, 96, 98 Wasdale, 9, 10, 12, 89, 99, 107, 110, 114, 117, 121, 141, 185 Wasdale Head, 89, 105, 113, 114, 117, 121, 124 Wasdale Head Inn, 124 Water lilies, 155, 182 Westmorland Cairn, 107 Westmorland Crags, 107 Wetherlam, 16 Whiteless Pike, 61, 80, 81 White Cross, 56 White Horse Inn, 54 White Side, 47, 49 Wilson’s Horse, 120 Winander, 16 Winandermere, 16 Windermere, 9, 10, 12, 15, 16, 21, 32, 142, 145, 146, 161, 164, 166 Windy Gap, 89, 101, 102 Winthrop-Young, Geoffrey, 2, 98 Wordsworth, Dorothy, 179 Wordsworth, Dora, 178 Wordsworth, William, 16, 30, 34, 42, 90, 151, 154, 162, 176, 178, 182, 183 Wrestling, 28 Wrynose Pass, 16, 145 Wythburn, 42, 174 Y Yewbarrow, 113 Yoke, 9, 15, 18, 19, 22, 24 Youdell Tarn, 172 Youth Hostel, 72, 110

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WAINWRIGHT’S LOST TOUR Ed Geldard is a professional landscape photographer, who, after a short spell in the Lake District, has now returned to live in his native northeast. A former freelance for the Northern Echo Group, he is a keen walker and contributes to many countryside publications. In 1991 he teamed up with the legendary Alfred Wainwright who said that his beautiful pictures ‘speak louder than words’. The Sunday Times labelled them as ‘stunningly magnificent’. Together they produced Wainwright in the Limestone Dales which became an overnight best seller. Commissioned in 1992 for Wainwright’s Tour in the Lake District, winner of the Tullie House prize in the ‘Lakeland Book of the Year Award’, he later went on to complete his own books Travels through the Lakes, Northumberland & the Land of the Prince Bishops and Northumberland Strongholds. Author Photo: © Cedric Iley

Extract from the introduction to Wainwright in the Limestone Dales. It was a godsend when Ed Geldard, a professional photographer and enthusiastic walker, came to settle in Kendal from the north-east. He proved to be the answer to my long-standing wish that someone would come along who could show in pictures the scenes where I had found beauty and interest and wanted others to see. We teamed up. I came out of slippered retirement and enjoyed a late bonus by visiting the old familiar places again – but this time with a master cameraman. So good was his work, so fulfilling of my ambitions, that I have been well content to let my narrative in this book play second fiddle to his excellent photographs. I have put pen to paper sparingly, aware that pictures speak louder than words. This is Ed’s book more than its mine.

What the reviews say: Wainwright in the Limestone Dales ‘Ed Geldard’s photographs are stunningly magnificent’ The Times Wainwright’s Tour in the Lake District ‘The best book on Cumbria’s Landscape’ Westmoreland Gazette Travels through the Lakes – Ed Geldard ‘Pictures out of the top drawer’ Yorkshire Post 192


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Wainwright's Lost Tour