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Middle Fell, Haycock, Caw, Seatallan and Buckbarrow - Day 3
by stevesey » Mon Jun 15, 2015 5:58 pm
Wainwrights included on this walk: Buckbarrow, Caw Fell, Haycock, Middle Fell, Seatallan
Date walked: 12/06/2015
Time taken: 7
Distance: 18 km
Ascent: 1500m1 person thinks this report is great. Register or Login free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
I arrived at the parking spot just after the loan lady walker I had walked with the day before! She was just doing Middle Fell today so we set off together.
Middle fell doesn't sound like much but it's a steady climb from the start and today was another hot one, with no breeze until the very top. A certain amount of taking it steady was needed to avoid turning into a puddle of sweat. Wasn't too long before we were at the top though. The face of Haycock looks a little intimidating from this distance and just seems to be crags and scree with not obvious route up (the photo's make it look much more friendly). My companion suggested I go to the left and aim for a rakish line we could see - although other peoples routes on walkhighlands seemed to suggest straight up. Also there was always the option of going right and joining the path from Scoat fell at the hause.
Anyway we said our goodbyes and headed our separate ways. Trying to follow the high ground and loose as little height as possible I followed the, sometimes indistinct, path across to the base of Seatallan and off to Haycock. Still not really sure about the ascent until was very close the the first lump of rocks where I can just start to pick out a path heading between the various crags and rocks. This is a steep slog but easily followed until the slope levels a little and it becomes more grassy, from that point I made my own zig-zags to the rocky summit.
No one around on these less visited fells - so found some shade for a pre-lunch brunch bar, after this headed off in the direction of Caw Fell. At Little Gowder Crag I found a rock to stash my rucksack behind for the in/out trip (and stuffed a small bottle of water in my pocket). There's a newly erected fence along the wall line to Caw fell - the old path wiggles around between the rocks and either side of the fence, so it's difficult to know if you are supposed to be between the fence and the wall or outside the fence - there are boulders either side so the best side changes. As I'm tall enough to be able to stretch top wire down and hop over this wasn't too much of a problem - might be a bit frustrating for those lesser in height (suggest you stick to the outside where you have more options - but a marginally longer route as a result).
After Caw it's back to Haycock and then off to Seatallan. If you look at the track carefully you'll see I ended up a bit to far right coming off Haycock and found myself looking at some steep scree. I thought about it briefly then decided to traverse left and go down a similar route to my ascent. After that I picked up the faint path across the flat bit.
Seatallan is another steep slog, mentally you know it's a lot less than Haycock or Middle Fell. but with no breeze and at the hottest time of the day it really was a case of going slowly to avoid melting. A couple of walkers appeared descending - one of which I recognised from the Wasdale Head. So that provided a brief pause for a chat about half way up.
Seatallan is a broad flat summit - so you can't see where to go next, and for the first time in the day I check the map to ensure I head off the summit in the right direction (always a good move given the story I hear in the ODG later). Anyway the long ridge out to Buckbarrow soon comes into view, a pleasant, fast paced stroll with good views. Buckbarrow is a lumpy collection of tops where you are never quite sure where the real summit is (although a few quick glances at the GPS make life easy).
Then the descent - it looked steep on the map and yes it was - steep and rough in places - where are those nice path police when you need them The road was reached with knees in tact and a gentle walk back to the car.
Photo's here: https://plus.google.com/photos/106459429880001195754/albums/6160239006082229313
P.S. The ODG story - I drove over to Langdale afterwards (via Hard Knott ) and stopped in the ODG for beer and food. Anyway barman was saying they had a chap outside waiting for a Taxi to Ennerdale. Seems he must have made a 180 degree error somewhere up around Esk Hause/Sprinkling Tarn area - cost of this mistake - £110 Taxi (they won't go over pass so it's all the way around).
by mike202 » Wed Jun 17, 2015 9:26 pm
I have fond memories of these fells as I camped near Hike Pikehow near Haycock and had lovely views of Seatallan at dusk and at dawn. When I climbed Haycock the next morning it was snowing and that was June!
I still need Buckbarrow for my list.
by ChrisW » Thu Jun 18, 2015 5:34 pm
As for the 110 taxi, I'd have rather crawled all the way back.....but then I'm a yorkshireman so that's to be expected
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