23rd November 2007

Perfect walking weather from Base Brown to High Doat


Walk Overview
Time 09.15 to 14.25
Duration 5 hr 10 min
Distance 9.4 mile
Ascent 3114 ft
Walking with On my own
Seathwaite - Gillercomb - Base Brown - Green Gable - Brandreth - Grey Knotts - Honister Pass - High Doat - Seatoller - Seathwaite
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Roadside parking leading to Seathwaite, Borrowdale

The popularity of the fells around here are more than reflected in the number of cars you find lining the road from Seathwaite Farm working back in the direction of Seatollor. I'm almost tempted to say that this is somewhere you'll never fail to get parked. Simply join the back of the line on the grass verge.

Parking is free and there is a tea room and toilets at Seathwaite.


Route Map

The good side to walking on days like today is obviously the chance to get out in clear conditions, a cloudless sky and the added bonus of no wind; the downside is that it's almost impossible to do a substantial walk at this time of year without spending at least some of your time walking in the shade. This isn't too bad normally, but the eagerness to reach those "perfect conditions" can often make the time spent in the shade feel more like a hurdle you have to get over than it really deserves.

This is more like it.
Standing at the entrance to Gillercomb (behind me), a lovely hanging valley enclosed by Base Brown, Green Gable, Brandreth and Grey Knotts. In the far distance you can see some of the Eastern fells.

Looking back to Base Brown from the path up to Green Gable. The darker area of fellside below me can quite often be a little wet and boggy underfoot; no such problems today though; the whole place was frozen solid.
Notice Helvellyn in the distance with a dusting of snow.

A fine view down to Buttermere and Crummock Water, taken from Green Gable.
The fells in the picture are Haystacks, High Crag, High Stile, Mellbreak, Low Fell, Fellbarrow, Rannerdale Knotts, Grasmoor and Whiteless Pike and not forgetting the little patch of blue (Blackbeck Tarn) at this end of Buttermere.

A minute or so walk from the summit and looking into Ennerdale Valley with Pillar on the left hand side and the High Stile Ridge on the right.

The bigger of the three tarns found below Brandreth.

And one of the smaller ones with Pillar behind.


Occasionally people ask me why I enjoy walking the fells so much and don't I ever get sick of it. Surprisingly it's quite difficult to put into words why I enjoy this so much. However, I'm probably right in saying that a view like this on a day like this will say it better than I ever could.

Three pictures taken at Brandreth summit. This one looking across to Central and the Eastern fells,

this one looking to the Western and the North Westen fells,

and finally, looking back to Green Gable (and Great Gable).

Another picture showing a snow topped Helvellyn, this one was taken from the edge of a frozen Grey Knotts Tarn.

And also from Grey Knotts Summit.

Honister quarries taken from Grey Knotts.

And from the same spot zooming in on Dubs Hut.

After leaving Grey Knotts I made my way down to Honister Mines and then headed down Honister Pass.

My original intention was to simply walk down the road to Seatoller and the back to the car. As it was such a nice afternoon I thought why not add High Doat (ahead of me, above the trees) onto the end of the walk.

Far too nice to go straight back to the car and well worth the effort of this short detour.

Sorry about the shaddow, but the view makes up for it I think.

Castle Crag seen in front of Derwent Water and the Skiddaw fells.
I can't decide if the view was so nice I just had to sit down and look at it or the left over cheese and tomato sandwich was so nice I just had to sit down and eat it. Probably the first one if the truth be told, but whatever the reason, while I was actually sitting here I honestly couldn't think of anywhere else I'd rather have been.


At the end of the walk now at Seathwaite Bridge.
A few more days like this please Mr weather man.

David Hall -
Lake District Walks