That ‘sinking feeling’ on Mungrisdale Common
by mike202 » Fri Jan 23, 2015 3:36 pm
Wainwrights included on this walk: Bannerdale Crags, Bowscale Fell, Mungrisdale Common, Souther Fell
Hewitts included on this walk: Bannerdale Crags, Bowscale Fell
Date walked: 22/01/2015
Time taken: 5
Distance: 17 km
Ascent: 976mRegister or Login free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).
I hadn’t been out hillwalking on a hard walk since November so needed a good walk to stretch the legs. I also wanted to keep chalking up more Wainwright hills as well. Me and the wife had been over in the Lakes a few days before, and climbed Dodd next to Skiddaw and the snow was lovely to be out in.
Driving along the A66 Blencathra looked great shrouded in a white blanket. I parked at Mungrisdale Village near to the start at Raven Crags; the village hall car park was coned off as they must have had something on this day. I managed to find somewhere off the road.
The sky was blue the sun was out, and it didn't really feel cold as I ascended the path at the side of Raven Crags. It’s quite steep to start with but then levels off. I had got some spikes from Santa so was wearing them. They weren't really necessary lower down but as I got higher the ground became more frozen.
It was great to be up on the ridge and the views were fantastic. I passed a pile or two of stones then came to a nicely built cairn. For a minute I thought I was at the summit and took some pics. A quick check of the map showed me that this was a lower top and the summit was in fact another ten minutes away.
At the true summit (702m) there is a shelter. It was indeed sheltering some snow! The broad ridge was covered in hard ice and a couple of inches of snow, the spikes really inspired confidence. I think crampons would have been overkill although I had them in my pack together with my ice axe just in case. I could see a couple of other walkers now on this ridge.
Next top was Bannerdale Crags around the top of the steeply shaped crags below.
I then headed west to the cross roads where I saw someone donning skis. Not something I had in my pack today. So I continued towards the third top of the day; Mungrisdale Common. I knew I had to contour around to the left to get there, but the snow had got quite deep here and I was sinking about a foot with every step. There was thinnish crust of frozen snow but underneath was just powder and wouldn’t hold my weight. The skis looked to be the right choice.
Walking was becoming quite arduous, plus I couldn’t see any sign of a summit or cairn to head for. I followed my map and eventually picked up a path coming down from Blencathra. This was easier going now and I kept heading west wondering if I would see any cairn at all due to the deepness of the snow. I got there in the end and decided to have lunch. The cairn was just a small collection of rocks.
The sky was slowly becoming cloudier although it was still very bright, and there was a plume above Blencathra. There was a noisy propeller engine plane buzzing around for a few minutes then it disappeared south.
No one was around on this fell, and although it is slightly disappointing as a Wainwright, it was a nice peaceful place, with good views over to Skiddaw.
I then headed back, following my footsteps which made the going easier plus I didn’t need to navigate as I knew I would end up back at the crossroads.
I had thought about climbing Blencathra, but I’ve done it already, the cloud was getting thicker on its top and there was very deep snow on the ascent. So that’s ruled that one out then!
From the col, I then tramped down the path to White Horse Bent and crossed the footbridge to head up slightly and meet the path up to Souter Fell. I could see several people who had come down from Blencathra but I hadn’t seen anyone on Sharp Edge.
It was a fairly straightforward climb up to the top although the large cairn isn’t actually at the highest point. Any way I headed down the fairly steep path along the shoulder of the hill bearing in mind that the path abruptly turns to the right due to a farmer fencing off the old path apparently. So reaching the lower slopes I then followed the fence around south for a couple of hundred metres until it reaches a small road (spikes off) which then leads back to the village.
I really enjoyed my snowy adventure and it was great to be able to get out in the fresh air and sunshine.
Going up from Raven Crags
looking back down
A cairn on Bowscale Fell
Bannerdale Crags, Blencathra, Bowscale Fell true summit
Snow shelter on Bowscale Fell
Winter sun on the way to Bannerdale Crags
Me at Bannerdale Crags the camera slipped on the ice!
looking down Bannerdale towards Mungrisdale village
A walker climbing Blencathra
'Summit' cairn on Mungrisdale Common
Aeroplane buzzing its that speck in the middle.
Souter Fell coming into view
some nice icicles!
Someone else on Souter Fell
the way down
by johnkaysleftleg » Fri Jan 23, 2015 4:44 pm
by mike202 » Fri Jan 23, 2015 8:57 pm
johnkaysleftleg wrote:Looks like a memorable day in the snow, some great pics there
Yes, it was a memorable day, thanks John
I still get excited when there's snow on the ground.
by The English Alpinist » Sat Nov 07, 2015 11:04 pm
by trailmasher » Sun Nov 08, 2015 1:48 pm
by ChrisW » Mon Nov 16, 2015 6:15 am
Anyway, still an enjoyable read without pics
by mike202 » Wed Feb 15, 2017 10:05 pm
ChrisW wrote:Great report Mike but there are no pics showing for me just a little square saying "click for photo"....when I click it I still get the same maybe it's just something to do with accessing from hotel internet as I'm on the road right now.
Anyway, still an enjoyable read without pics
Thanks Chris. Sorry for the delay but I've tried to fix the photo links now!