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Stony Cove Pike, Sleddale Fell
by poppiesrara » Thu Jun 06, 2013 11:13 pm
Wainwrights included on this walk: Caudale Moor, Grey Crag, Hartsop Dodd, Tarn Crag (Far Eastern Fells)
Hewitts included on this walk: Grey Crag, Stony Cove Pike (Caudale Moor), Tarn Crag
Date walked: 04/06/2013
Time taken: 5
Distance: 17.25 km
Ascent: 1200m1 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).
From the pretty namesake village at its foot, it’s a fierce and relentless climb up the north ridge of Hartsop Dodd – a zigzag, sometimes-steeped path makes the best of it but it’s still very tough, and probably better avoided in descent. The views, down the valley to Ullswater and over Dovedale to the eastern Fairfield fells, are stunning though – good to look over to those struggling steeply up Hartsop above How and know that what you’re doing probably looks even more daunting to them… Contrastingly easy walking up the broad grassy ridge to Stony Cove Pike from there: probably the wrong name, but it’s a far more flattering one for a high mountain than ‘Caudale Moor’ so I’m sticking with it!
It’s an interesting descent from the summit into Thresthwaite Mouth and then down the gap into the Pasture Beck valley, steep and long (impossible to take quickly) but with plenty of little rock steps to half-scramble down and then a well-made step-path. Gently home from there to finish a pretty testing 5 miles.
It might only be 7 or 8 direct miles to Sadgill from there, but it takes a long while in the car – beautiful as Longsleddale is, it’s not a drive you’d want to repeat too often. Sleddale Fell isn’t probably top of many people’s ‘walks to do in the Lakes’ list – for a couple of hours on a perfect summer’s day there wasn’t a soul to be seen – but it’s proof that even the lesser walks in this area beat most things elsewhere: beautiful views, a challenging little route on decent-enough paths, and some fine summits to target.
For the second time in the day, the initial ascent up fields and a stony gully was breath-shorteningly hard work, but it’s easy enough for the rest of the way on generally well-trodden tracks (there may have been ‘no paths’ around here in AW’s day, but that was before he set the routes for thousands to follow…). With a bit of good weather recently, this wasn’t nearly as boggy as anticipated: given some concentrated hopping in the hollow between Grey and Tarn Crags you can just about get around with dry feet. Worth the short detour to the outlier Harrop Pike for good views and a nice little rocky summit (for the sake of a few feet, it’s a bit of a surprise that this isn’t the ‘Wainwright’ ahead of Grey Crag), and the other tops are improved by the well-preserved surveyors’ pillars. Finally, the last couple of miles back down Longsleddale are delightful, Dales-like walking; in the sunshine, this route was far better than ever imagined.
by malky_c » Fri Jun 07, 2013 3:06 pm
by johnkaysleftleg » Fri Jun 07, 2013 3:22 pm
by nigheandonn » Fri Jun 07, 2013 7:45 pm
Definitely looks like you had a good day for it.
by L-Hiking » Fri Jun 07, 2013 10:22 pm
She was not impressed on my choice of route not that there is many other options!
Nice walk tho once on the ridge
Well done I'm sweating again reading your report
by colgregg » Sun Jun 09, 2013 9:06 pm
I never really saw much of Longsleddale or the summits which is a pity as the mist never really cleared until I got to Selside Pike on the way back to Mardale.
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