Haweswater Thursday Walk

Haweswater - Thursday 30th. Jan. 2014

This walk was only circulated to members a day or so in advance, so it wasn't surprising there were only 3 of us on the walk. In this respect we were quite fortunate, as a much larger group would have been unmanageable, with any degree of safety, given the conditions on the higher Fells.

Starting from the small car park at the head of Haweswater, we made our way round the head of the Lake to The Rigg, then climbed the ridge on the south side of Riggindale to the summit of High Street. Conditions underfoot had changed from frozen ground at the bottom of the ridge, to patchy snow, then much deeper snow in the upper parts. A frozen crust, which at times held our weight and other times we broke through, made the climb energy sapping, particularly for the one breaking trail. On the summit conditions weren't for the faint hearted. Deep frozen snow, mist and a bitterly cold east wind weren't conducive for a break and a bite to eat, but as we headed down to Mardale Ill Bell, things improved considerably.

Click on pictures to view.

After a much needed lunch break, we continued over Mardale Ill Bell, then dropped down to Nan Bield Pass before heading over Harter Fell to Gatesgarth Pass. Here we had a discussion as to whether or not we should follow the pass down to the car park. As it was only 2.30pm. we decided there was time enough to continue over Branstree and Selside Pike, which we did, finally dropping into Mardale and our cars, via the Old Corpse Road, that linked Swindale with the now submerged Mardale Church.

Distance views were obliterated by dark cloud, but this was equally matched by unusual atmospheric conditions and fine views of of the neighbouring fells. Distance of the walk was quite irrellevant. It was just a great day out on the fells.