10th April 2011

Steel Knotts and Hallin Fell


Walk Overview
Time 09.15 to 13.45
Duration 4 hr 30 min
Distance 7.8 mile
Ascent 2100 ft
Walking with Jennifer
Martindale new church - Birkie Knott - Steel Knotts - Brownthwaite Crag - Fusedale - Howtown - Geordie's Crag - Hallinhag Wood - Sandwick - Howegrain Beck - Martindale new church - Hallin Fell - Martindale new church
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Parking spaces, Martindale new church

There are plenty of parking spaces next to Martindale's new church and what a fantastic area this is. Found on what I'd call the back side of Ullswater this is as close as you're going to get to unspoilt.

The sheer quantity of walks that can be done from here would rival any other area in the Lake District, it may take a little more imagination and inventiveness than some places, but there really is something to suit everyone.

Parking is free.


Route Map

After yesterday's long walk I think I was due something a little gentler, so after discussing a few possibilities last night Jennifer suggested Steel Knotts and Hallin Fell. Excellent idea, , , this is an area we both enjoy and because of the layout of the place there are lots of options for a make it up as you go along walk.

This is Martindale's new church in front of Hallin Fell. When I say new church, I don't mean it was only built recently, it just isn't as old as the other one. You probably new that already though didn't you, , , , anyway: as seen as though we'd set off from the bottom of Hallin Fell we should have walked up there at the beginning of the walk instead of the end. When we got back here it was packed to overflowing. A group of about 30 teenagers were crowded around a flaming BBQ on the ground with one of their car radios blasting out a thumping noise they seemed to think was music, and at the summit, one set of parents thought it a good idea to sit their two kids on top of the Obelisk which I suppose isn't a bad idea if you're not bothered about damaging things, for the rest of us however, it was selfish and irresponsible. Several other people were clearly annoyed that the summit had been claimed by these idiots.

That's enough moaning so I'll get on with the walk.

Further up Steel Knotts and the view opens up a little to show Gowbarrow Fell on the opposite side of Ullswater.

Steel Knotts summit.


Looking back along the ridge to Steel Knotts.

Dale Head farm and Bannerdale on the right hand side of The Nab.

From Brownthwaite Crag we followed a soggy path around to, , ,

, , , the ruined buildings at the head of Fusedale and then, , ,

, , , walked down into Fusedale itself.

Fusedale isn't the longest valley by any stretch of the imagination, and it's also quite close to the Howtown area which generally has quite a few people knocking about, yet I've never seen more than one or two people here on my visits. It's strange how some places just don't attract many people.


Once Fusedale Beck is crossed using this clapper bridge it's a simple case of following the road down to Howtown.


Howtown in front of Hallin Fell.

"I don't like grass"
"Have you ever tried it"
"Then how do you know you don't like it"
"I just don't. . . I want something else"
"Listen kid, you'd better get used to it cos grass is going to be the only thing on the menu for you."

The Ullswater steamer approaching Howtown.

To make the walk a little longer, we went around the Ullswater side of Hallin Fell to Sandwick. This is a lovely route around here, and although it isn't 'up a fell' which is what most fell walkers would want, the fact is, it's just a really nice place to walk.


Lunch with a view of Ullswater and Arthur's Pike.

Following the shoreline path into Hallinhag Wood.

Gowbarrow Fell seen across the fields between Hallinhag Wood and Sandwick.

It was quite warm for the whole walk, but by the time we got as far as Sandwick the temperature was climbing nicely up to something you'd be happy with in the middle of June.

The Old Vicarage.

The bridge over Howegrain Beck seemed to be a popular picnic spot today.

There was no point in carrying them up here, so we left our bags in the car, and then headed up Hallin Fell.

Almost at the top and this view shows the Pooley Bridge end of Ullswater.

Just past the summit and the middle section of Ullswater comes into view, along with the eastern fells.

Martindale (left) and Boredale (right) separated by the Beda Fell ridge.

David Hall -
Lake District Walks