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High Seat in t'Dales

High Seat in t'Dales

Postby DaveB1 » Fri Feb 01, 2013 11:05 pm

Hewitts included on this walk: High Seat

Date walked: 27/01/2013

Time taken: 3

Distance: 8.59 km

Ascent: 257m

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Sometimes I wonder why I climb hills and on days like today I know why. I’d texted the boys earlier in the week and Jim and Mick were up for it. Mick hadn't been out since before Xmas and I could tell from the speed of the reply he needed the ‘fix’. Jim was intending to bring Cindy (the wife) and Lassie (the dog) but in the end it was only his good self that appeared.
The weather had been snowy to say the least, but the ground was frozen and my thoughts had strayed to the Yorkshire Dales. Those of you with memories of endless bogs and peat hags will know why, frozen ground equals Yorkshire Hills time! :D
So it was that High Seat and Nine Standards Rigg beckoned, plans were laid, maps were printed off and I found a real OS map I’d actually bought. I read an account of the hills on WH site (Poppiesrara) :clap: but decided that a shortened version was needed, so plotted a there and back route (you’ll see what I mean).

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Sunday after the great snow fall had arrived and went, the roads had cleared. I picked Mick up from the bus turning circle at 7.30am and headed off to Blackburn for Jim. This British weather never ceases to amaze, the road to Blackburn from Bury (The Grane) had been closed the day before, but now was clear and Blackburn looked as if no snow whatsoever had fallen. Jim said he’d left Cindy and Lassie behind because he thought I’d be in my new car and didn’t want to get the back seat dirty!, and in any case Cindy had clearly had a moment of sense and declined the trip. He was surprised when the old car turned up, but that’s another story.
The journey to Nateby then the B6270 was uneventful and the snow that had blocked the M6 on Friday was gone. It wasn’t till we turned right at Tebay that the remnants became apparent on the Howgills and in the distance on the Yorkshire Hills.
Jim provided the best laugh of the trip when he put his specs on to send a tweet to the Twitteratii and discovered he was wearing his 3D specs from his trip to the cinema :lol: :lol: . He did find a spare pair and thus was saved.
The road to our starting point was clear but narrow and the car was making great progress until we got to an area called Tailbridge Neck, there was a ten foot drift to the left, a three foot bit of clear road to the right before Armco barrier and a bl**dy big drop to the right. Eyes shut! Foot down! Waggle the wheel about and we were through. :crazy: I think Jim saw it in 3-D, judging from the noise from the back seat.
High Seat - 270113 002.JPG
Jim and Mick ready for action

High Seat - 270113 004.JPG
High Pike Hill and the way up

Finding a great place to park, it was stony, we got out to get the kit from the boot, it was windy. :D I didn’t realise quite how windy until I tried to get back in the driver’s seat, I got my left leg in but the wind was so strong I couldn’t push the door wide enough to get the right one in. Two minutes later, during a lull I succeeded and got the boots on. :clap:
We decided to abandon the rucksacks as we’d be coming back to the car, but Mick and I took our poles for added balance.
Totally waterproofed, hatted and gloved, we set off up High Pike Hill with the wind howling into our right hand sides. The way up was obvious and to be fair was the steepest part of the walk. Fortunately, whilst most of the snow had gone, the ground was still fairly frozen so the walking wasn’t too bad other than the ferocity of the wind. Managed a few scenic photos:-
High Seat - 270113 007.JPG

High Seat - 270113 008.JPG
Rest of Dales to the East

And eventually summitted on High Seat.
High Seat - 270113 009.JPG
Summit Laughter

Great views, we’d managed to stay cloud free and as I knelt (couldn’t stand up!) to take this one, we found ourselves grinning like nutters and laughing aloud, it was a good to be alive feeling, surrounded by nothing but the wind and views for miles. :lol: :lol:
High Seat - 270113 012.JPG
High Pike Hill and Hags

High Seat - 270113 013.JPG
Wild Boar Fell

That said the wind chill soon prompted a hasty retreat back the way we’d come and down to the car for lunch.
A word of warning at this point, on the 1:25000 OS map, the area between High Seat and High Pike Hill is called Lodge Hags; they are big enough to be shown on the map individually and in less clear and dry/frozen conditions could make walking akin to the Sahara Dunes. So, keep right on the way up and keep left on the way down or have a bog fest to end all bog fests!!
A leisurely lunch in the car; feeling the car swaying and hearing the wind howling did little to enthuse us, but intrepid walkers (certified nutcases) that we are, we set off up the ‘Coast-to-Coast’ path for Nine Standards Rigg. Mick and I told Jim it would be much better in May. :lol: As the wind got stronger and the hail/snow/ice particles defoliated our heads, we trudged along the path into the wind. After about ten minutes of this and glancing heavenwards only to see more of the same, we called it a draw, the cloud level had dropped I was concerned about getting the car stuck and to be fair it was miserable. Nine Standards Rigg will still be there later on and anyway my beer compass was twitching.
We returned to the car and headed for Kirby Stephen for a pint in the Kings Arms; we sussed out Jim’s overnight stop in May and planned an intercept for Mick and me to spur him on.
On the way back down the M6, Yes, the sun came out, clouds disappeared and the wind dropped ‘c’est la vie’ as they say. ‘Told you so’ said Jim, he’d had a vision, must have been the 3-D specs. :lol:
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Re: High Seat in t'Dales

Postby ChrisW » Sun Feb 03, 2013 1:44 am

It's even better with the pics showing mate :clap:
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Re: High Seat in t'Dales

Postby simon-b » Sun Feb 03, 2013 9:21 pm

A good walk, Dave. Some fine winter photos from there, right on t'border o't'Dales.

I reckon the hills around Mallerstang are some of the best in England outside the Lake District. Wild Boar Fell, Swarth Fell, High Seat and Nine Standards Rigg makes a great round from Kirkby Stephen during longer daylight hours.
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