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High Cup Nick, Upper Teesdale.

High Cup Nick, Upper Teesdale.


Postby colgregg » Mon Apr 12, 2010 9:55 pm

Date walked: 12/04/2010

Time taken: 8

Distance: 29 km

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A beautiful day and a cancelled trip to the lakes left me looking for something semi local to do. I had always wanted to see High Cup Nick, a classic glacial u shaped valley which forms a deep chasm on the Pennine fellside, "in the flesh" so thought this would be the Ideal opportunity. Parking up Just South of Langdon Beck off the B6277 I headed down the track to Widdy bank Farm to join the Pennine way path which I then followed all the way to High cup Nick . The way follows the River Tees West ,passing beneath the shattered cliffs of Cronkley scar and Falcon clints. Thus far the river flows swiftly but undramatically, however, after 2 miles the roar of Cauldron Snout can be heard. As the path turns the corner of Falcon Clints the falls are seen in all their glory, A ribbon of white water dropping 200feet in the space of 200 yards. With the Tees dammed above by the Cow Green Reservoir the falls rely on Northumbria water to release enough water to maintain a good flow. Fortunately today they were spectacular. I Am in two minds as to which is best, This fall or High Force 4 miles to the East. I am trending towards Cauldron Snout as my favourite. Any opinions folk?
After a rest it was time to tackle the long trudge to the nick. Crossing the bridge over the river above the falls, with the massive concrete dam looming behind, the track is followed to the lonely farm of Birkdale. Once through the farm it's up and over the moors on a well laid path to join Maize Beck which was in view on my left for most of the way. A short distance upstream is a substantial bridge which replaced stepping stones previously used to cross the beck. Here a choice must be made as the routes on both sides of the beck are marked as Pennine Way om the map. My advice is if you want an easy walk then cross the bridge and follow the dry path. I decided otherwise and followed the longer, wetter path of sorts. The only advangage of this is that as I approached the Nick I could only see the uppermost cliffs until I was at the edge of the drop. On arrival the scene ahead is truly awesome, sufferers of vertigo may recoil in shock at it's sudden appearance. Some one described it as being like a huge bathtub with the end sawn off!! a very apt description. The uppermost cliffs give way to a jumble of boulders and scree on steep slopes dropping over 600ft to the valley floor.
Having eaten and spent time taking in the view I headed back to the bridge via the Dry path. Wise walkers will now reverse their route back to the car but I decided to follow what turned out to be a non existant Bridleway (it's marked on the map!!!) alongside the beck as I wanted to take in Maize Beck Force. While the beck is an attractive companion it is much easier to cut across the short distance from Birkdale to the Falls. Once back at Cow green dam it was a case of taking the tarmac road back to the car by which time I was totally exhausted.
Tip: Park at Cow Green car park it saves miles. While it is pleasant, the walk by the Tees and back is 5 miles you can do without on such a trip.
High Cup Nick 018.JPG
Cauldron Snout

High Cup Nick 047.JPG
The upper reaches of Maize Beck

High Cup Nick 052.JPG
Decision Bridge (my name for it). Over for the dry path.

High Cup Nick 062.JPG
High Cup. Strong direct sun stopped me from getting the classic full length shot

High Cup Nick 064.JPG
Nichol Chair. Nichol is said to have been a Dufton cobbler who climbed the rock tower and then soled and heeled a pair of boots whilst sitting on the top.

High Cup Nick 092.JPG
Maize Beck Force. A fine resting place before dragging your tired legs back to the car.
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Last edited by colgregg on Tue Apr 13, 2010 5:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
colgregg
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Re: High Cup Nick, Upper Teesdale.

Postby mountain coward » Tue Apr 13, 2010 8:52 am

Superb! Thanks for that. Some lovely waterfalls there... I've been wanting to go back to High Cup Nick for ages - haven't been since I was young and walking with my parents. I also want to include Dufton Pike if possible. The route info you've given should come in useful though :D
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Re: High Cup Nick, Upper Teesdale.

Postby colgregg » Tue Apr 13, 2010 9:07 am

This is the best way to do it for the surprise element, Although it is longer. A very patien non walking car owner would be useful then they could pick you up at dufton and run you back to Teesdale.
colgregg
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Posts: 2182
Munros:15   Corbetts:5
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Joined: Aug 25, 2009
Location: Richmond North Yorkshire

Re: High Cup Nick, Upper Teesdale.

Postby mountain coward » Tue Apr 13, 2010 9:28 am

Yeah, it did look a long walk... also need to find some accommodation around Dufton - although I believe the old YHA was reopened by the locals?
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Re: High Cup Nick, Upper Teesdale.

Postby MiniRambo » Sat May 08, 2010 10:00 pm

The Youth Hostel has reopened, I think, for the summer months only, but I do know there are a few good B&Bs in Dufton that would look after you.
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Re: High Cup Nick, Upper Teesdale.

Postby mountain coward » Mon May 10, 2010 9:24 am

Well I don't think it will be classed as illegal advertising if you put them out on here :D
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Re: High Cup Nick, Upper Teesdale.

Postby MiniRambo » Mon May 10, 2010 7:16 pm

Hi MC, have a look at this website, its my brother's - www.browfarm.com
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MiniRambo
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Re: High Cup Nick, Upper Teesdale.

Postby mountain coward » Tue May 11, 2010 8:24 am

That's excellent thanks - it's a real, proper farmhouse isn't it - with barn attached like in the old days! :D Looks very nice anyway so I'm sure Richard and I will be going for that as he doesn't like bunkhouse/Youth Hostel type accommodation anyway... of course, we're not sure when we're going yet...
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