6th March 2023

Led by Allan

Six members of Cumbria LDWA met at Bowscale on a cool, overcast but dry day, with the objective of circumnavigating Saddleback aka Blencathra.

Taking an easterly track to Moss Dyke then south on a minor road soon saw us in Mungrisdale.
The fallen tree was still resting on the stile as we climbed up to Hazelhurst (see October 2022 AGM walk report),
but it was easier to negotiate this time as its luxuriant foliage had withered and blown away.
Once up on the tarmac we followed the gated road around the mountain as far as Mousethwaite Comb, where a fair number of cars were parked.

(A popular starting point for a walk to the top via Scales Fell starts here).

A steep path took us part way up before we forked left to countour above Scales and its popular pub.
Here the party divided with two continuing on the high-level path via a short section of scrambling at Scaley Beck,
while four took the roadside footpath, the parties reuniting near the Threlkeld Kennels.

After a pause for refreshment, we resumed our circumspection of Saddleback, soon meeting a party of hounds and their handlers coming the other way.
A short break was offered at the Blencathra Centre for there are Loos there. The route then continued up the Glendaraterra valley, taking the less frequented/more boggy path close to the river. Lunch was taken near the turbine hall (which provides power for the centre we passed earlier). Reaching the historic Guide-stone and the Cumbria Way we followed the latter to Skiddaw House then northwards through the glen (it does feel like Scotland here) with the infant River Caldew off to our right until meeting the tarmac at the head of Mosedale.
Away to our left the dark speck of the Lingy Hut looked down impassively from its col high above.
After a pasue for refreshment we descended Mosedale (a bit) before striking steeply up towards Bowscale Tarn.
A good track then led down to Bowscale and the cars.

18.5 miles