I'd looked at several different start points to do this route and finally decided on the little car park by the phone box just off the A591 as you are approaching Legburthwaite, we arrived early enough to be in with a fighting chance and found we were the second car there with enough space for two more cars, sorted!
The route I chose started with a short walk along the B5322 to the gate that leads up to Castle Rock then turn left along the leat marked on the map, along the wall as far as Fornside, then pick up the old peat track that zig zags up the fell side and, again, is marked on the map. This peat track was used to transport cut peat from higher on the fell and the bottom of it starts around NY3230 2075 and terminates at a sheepfold type construction at around NY3270 2125.
From the sheepfold we took a raising traverse towards Clough Head and picked up the path leading to it. From that point on it was plain sailing. We arrived at Clough Head with nice views north, but towards Great Dodd, Watsons Dodd and the rest of our route was all obscured with cloud.
The walk over to Calfhow Pike was o.k albeit a bit soggy and was clear of clag but we were soon heading into it, ah well, we're familiar with that theme.
Once in the cloud, we stayed in it all the way to White Side, made one or two variations to the route when looking for the cairns on Watsons Dodd and Stybarrow Dodd, as was a mountain biker who we met on three occasions looking for the way to Calfhow Pike, we put him right in the end so off he went into the gloom, hope he found his way.
We did meet a few people on our way and had a natter with a few, the general feeling was one of "at least it's warm" and "it's not raining yet" and really, it was'nt too bad, just the cloud was a bit of a downer, so that explains the lack of interesting photo's on this report, it wasn't until we were coming off White Side when the cloud started breaking and we had some views, ain't that the case for all of us.
From Sticks Pass up to Raise the ground changes from grassy slopes to more rugged underfoot, here we were passed by a large group of moutainbikers who seemed to have no fear at all, they came off the top of Raise at full pelt, how they stayed upright I'll never know but they seemed to glide over the boulders and rocks as if spurned on by divine intervention or was it they just knew what they were doing, quite impressive all the same.
Next up was White Side and, as mentioned, just as we were leaving the cairn the clouds parted and we were treated to some good views at last.
We had a good day out and were lucky with the weather to a degree, the cloud is just one of those things in the hills, we'd never get out if we waited for decent weather and good visability.
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