Left Overs

Wainwrights: Raven Crag

Date walked: 19/01/2020

Time taken: 4 hours

Distance: 11.5km

Ascent: 736m

Back in June 2019 an attempt to combine Raven Crag and High Rigg ended in abject failure largely due to me not doing any research as to access to Raven Crag. On this morning, having checked I could actually get across the dam, I returned to visit the tops I missed out upon that day.

I arrived before sunrise to be greated by an extraordinary sky above the Helvellyn ridge. It was a super sunrise with changing colours as the angle of the sun changed. All this was helped by a mirror flat Thirlmere so the wonderful sky could perfectly reflected.

Neon Sky

Thirlmere Sunrise

The colours continued to evolve on the way up the path through the frozen devastation of the denuded forestry slopes but by the time we topped onto the summit decking :wtf: the sun was hiding leaving a grey but beautiful view down Thirlmere. The path was, unlike the last time I was up here, nice and clear and we had breakfast enjoying the morning at this excellent vantage point.

Frozen devastation on the way up Raven Crag

Golden Dawn

Closing in on Raven Crag

First light just catching the tops

Golden light on Skiddaw

Looking towards Dunmail Raise

Thirlmere Sky

Blencathra from Raven Crag

Classic Raven Crag View

Hughie checks out the summit decking

Next up was Castle Crag, the former site of an Iron age hill fort. It's easy to imagine this being used as a defensive location with it's clear views up and down the valley. By this time the sky was changing again into a quite spectacular herringbone pattern, also known as a Mackerel sky. We didn't linger long and were soon making our way up through the forest to the rocky top of The Benn. This is another fine Birkett top and well worth a visit so we stayed a while before returning to the forestry track which winds it's way down the Western slopes beneath Sippling Crag.

Looking down Shoulthwaite from Castle Crag

The Dodds and an amazing sky from Castle Crag

...and up Shoulthwaite from Castle crag

Close to the top of The Benn

Thirlmere from The Benn

Hughie on The Benn

Mid Gill from The Benn

From this path Sippling Crag is revealed as really quite impressive but not as much as Iron Crag across Shoulthwaite which looked beautiful in the soft sunshine. So far the signage had been fairly straightforward but unsurprisingly contradicting messages were encountered making me glad I was doing this walk on a Sunday. The devastation caused by the pipeline project is still there for all to see but as they are clearly not finished the cover up job will have to be judged in a few years time, until then it will be a serious eyesore.

We ended up staying on the road as the path past Smaithwaite to Bridge End Farm was closed for no apparent reason. I could have ignored the sign but felt it best to just take a few more minutes on the road.

The impressive Iron Crag

Calfhow Pike

Watson's Dodd and Castle Rock

High Rigg

Raven Crag

By now the day was starting to feel quite spring like and plenty of people were wandering around the road. I'm not sure if I were wanting a low level wander on a fine winters day I'd pick here at the moment given the pipeline project, but I suppose you can look past it to some fine views of the fells.

Back across the dam I joined up with the permissive path along the shore beneath the final top of the day. As with Castle Crag and The Benn, Great How is certainly worth a visit giving excellent views up Thrilmere and across to Raven Crag. The day had quite transformed from the icy dawn and we sat (well I did, Hughie wandered about looking for titbits) and consumed some rations in the surprisingly warm feeling sunshine.

Shore path around Great How

Looking back across Thirlmere

Watson's Dodd again

Raven Crag and the Dam from Great How

Great How summit

Browncove Crags

North from Great How

Castle Rock of Triermain

South from Great How

I nice walk all said and done and one which will be even nicer in a few years once the scars have healed.

our_route.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts

Please note this is an approximation of my route and not a GPS trail

Click to mark this as a great report. Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).

Comments: 9

Third Time Lucky

Attachment(s) Wainwrights: Barrow, Causey Pike, Eel Crag, Grisedale Pike, Sail, Scar Crags
Hewitts: Causey Pike, Crag Hill (Eel Crag), Grisedale Pike, Hobcarton Crag, Sail, Scar Crags
Date walked: 04/12/2019
Distance: 15.5km
Ascent: 1291m
Comments: 3
Views: 224

Struck by being on Middle Fell with Hugh

Attachment(s) Wainwrights: Buckbarrow, Middle Fell, Seatallan
Hewitts: Seatallan
Date walked: 10/11/2019
Distance: 10.2km
Ascent: 810m
Comments: 3
Views: 211

Hobbling in the Howgills

Attachment(s) Hewitts: Randygill Top, The Calf
Date walked: 23/10/2019
Distance: 19km
Ascent: 1024m
Comments: 10
Views: 338

Small but Spectacular

Attachment(s) Wainwrights: Gowbarrow Fell, Great Mell Fell, Little Mell Fell
Date walked: 12/10/2019
Distance: 16.2km
Ascent: 935m
Comments: 5
Views: 260

A Bank Holiday Swindle

Attachment(s) Wainwrights: Branstree, Grey Crag, Selside Pike, Tarn Crag (Far Eastern Fells)
Hewitts: Branstree, Grey Crag, Selside Pike, Tarn Crag
Date walked: 26/08/2019
Distance: 21.3km
Ascent: 870m
Comments: 11
Views: 501

A Week in Assynt: Part Two

Attachment(s) Munros: Ben Hope
Date walked: 02/08/2019
Distance: 7.7km
Ascent: 913m
Comments: 6
Views: 480

A Week in Assynt: Part One

Attachment(s) Corbetts: Quinag - Spidean Coinich
Date walked: 28/07/2019
Distance: 7.2km
Ascent: 631m
Comments: 8
Views: 585

Langdale wander

Attachment(s) Wainwrights: Bowfell, Crinkle Crags, Esk Pike, Rosset Pike
Hewitts: Bowfell, Crinkle Crags (Long Top), Crinkle Crags South Top, Esk Pike, Rossett Pike
Date walked: 06/07/2019
Distance: 18.8km
Ascent: 1312m
Comments: 6
Views: 1085

An Idiots Day Out

Attachment(s) Wainwrights: High Rigg
Date walked: 19/06/2019
Distance: 12.2km
Ascent: 569m
Comments: 7
Views: 525


User avatar
Location: County Durham
Occupation: General dogsbody
Interests: Walking (Who would have guessed), photography and playing Guitar.
Activity: Walker
Pub: Moulin Inn
Mountain: Blaven
Place: Isle of Skye
Gear: Boots
Member: None
Camera: Canon EOS760D
Ideal day out: Ridge walk without to much exposure.
Ambition: Too keep climbing hills

Munros: 25
Corbetts: 10
Grahams: 10
Donalds: 3
Wainwrights: 214
Hewitts: 166
Sub 2000: 7
Islands: 8


Filter reports



Trips: 1
Distance: 11.5 km
Ascent: 736m
Wainwrights 1


Trips: 18
Distance: 247 km
Ascent: 15122m
Munros: 1
Corbetts: 1
Hewitts: 30
Wainwrights 36


Trips: 13
Distance: 222.69 km
Ascent: 13168m
Hewitts: 29
Wainwrights 55


Trips: 21
Distance: 244.75 km
Ascent: 14883m
Munros: 1
Grahams: 1
Sub2000s: 1
Hewitts: 25
Wainwrights 29


Trips: 17
Distance: 213.5 km
Ascent: 12721m
Corbetts: 2
Grahams: 1
Hewitts: 13
Wainwrights 12


Trips: 19
Distance: 367.5 km
Ascent: 22089m
Munros: 2
Corbetts: 1
Hewitts: 45
Wainwrights 50


Trips: 21
Distance: 424.5 km
Ascent: 27170m
Munros: 6
Grahams: 1
Sub2000s: 1
Hewitts: 44
Wainwrights 57


Trips: 34
Distance: 360.25 km
Ascent: 22306m
Munros: 2
Corbetts: 3
Grahams: 3
Donalds: 2
Sub2000s: 3
Hewitts: 33
Wainwrights 54


Trips: 33
Distance: 352.78 km
Ascent: 22683m
Munros: 4
Grahams: 3
Hewitts: 28
Wainwrights 34


Trips: 18
Distance: 162.53 km
Ascent: 12643m
Munros: 5
Corbetts: 1
Grahams: 1
Sub2000s: 1
Hewitts: 7
Wainwrights 24


Trips: 2
Distance: 8 km
Ascent: 950m
Munros: 1
Hewitts: 1
Wainwrights 1

Joined: Jan 28, 2009
Last visited: Feb 24, 2020
Total posts: 3104 | Search posts