20th August 2011

Around the Blencathra fells


Walk Overview
Time 07.30 to 13.35
Duration 6 hr 5 min
Distance 17.3 mile
Ascent 1900 ft
Walking with On my own
Mungrisdale - Bowscale - Mosedale - Swineside - Grainsgill Beck - Skiddaw House - Roughton Gill - Blencathra Centre - Threlkeld - A66 - Guardhouse - Dobson's Bridge - A66 - Scales - Southerfell (farm) - Mungrisdale
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Mungrisdale Village

Mungrisdale is without doubt a small place but it does still have a couple of different options for parking. Rather than list them separately, I've simply grouped them together as Mungrisedale Village. The map shows the various places on offer.


Route Map

Early morning in Mungrisdale. I suspected that most people were still in bed so I tried to keep the noise down as I walked along here.

Mungrisdale Church.

The second place I walked through was the tiny hamlet of Bowscale. There is a little more to the place than this, but not a great deal.
That's not a complaint by the way, given the luxuries of choice and a money tree in the garden, this would suit me perfectly.

Next is Mosedale. It was here that I left this road and headed into the fells; so to speak.

Heading down the Swineside / Roundhouse road.

The River Caldew, seen in front of Coomb Height.

A long distance view up the River Caldew to the twin tops of Skiddaw Little Man.

I know it's a bit difficult to see, but the small dot on the middle skyline is Lingy Hut.
The road ends at this point and gives way to the path that eventually leads to Skiddaw House, , , , and if you were wondering how far it is, , , ,

, , , this small sign lets you know.

The heather was in full bloom on the fellside today and was filling the air with its very pleasant perfume. I wonder if you can buy aftershave that smalls like this.
"but you don't use aftershave"
"Ah, that because I've never found any that smells like heather"

Further up the River Caldew and now the view includes Skiddaw Little Man, Skiddaw (in cloud) and Skiddaw House (the white dot near the centre).

If only the classrooms on my school had been this shape. If they had, I wouldn't have spent half of my early teens standing in the corner.

Getting closer to Skiddaw House.
It took me exactly 1hr 10min to walk from the sign to Skiddaw House, so I must have been walking at 3mph along this section. Yes, I know it's useless drivel but I just thought I'd tell you anyway.

At Skiddaw House now and looking back down my route.
The fell on the left is Great Calva and in the far distance is Carrock Fell.

Looking back to Skiddaw House.

"Are you going up Skiddaw" the couple asked as we passed each other.
"No, not today. I'm going to Threlkeld next"
"We've just come from there, , , , we're going to Latrigg, Keswick and then getting the bus back"
"I'm sorry to say this, but if you're going to Latrigg and Keswick from Threlkeld, you're going the wrong way"
I walked with them as far as my turning where they passed on their gratitude which left me feeling like I'd just done my good deed for the day.

A gate, a wall, a stile and a cyclists head in front of Lonscale Fell.

So far I'd only passed a guy on a bike near Skiddaw House and the Latrigg couple. And even now, I was only seeing a few other people. By the time I got back to the car, I counted up that I'd only passed about a dozen people, not bad for a 17 mile walk on a decent day in the middle of the holiday season.

Walking around to the Blencathra Centre and the view opens up to show the north western fells, Derwent Water, Walla Crag and Latrigg.

Threlkeld church.
It was here that I decided it was about time I had something to eat and a sit down for ten minutes. When I walk on my own I just don't seem to stop much. Apart from taking photos, and talking to a few people that actually wanted to speak, this was the first time I'd stopped since I left Mungrisdale.

Walking through Threlkeld village.

I assume this was the main road at some point. The road was just wide enough for two cyclists and one pedestrian, so it wasn't exactly built to cope with the traffic demands of the 21st century.

The narrow overgrown road soon gave way to the noise and traffic fumes of the main A66.

This is better, peace and quiet once more.


Although I've cycled through here quite a few times in the past, this was the first time I'd walked through this area. I know this isn't what you'd call walking on the fells, but if it's a walk through some lovely countryside you're after then this should please most people.

Looking across the valley to Blencathra.

Dobson's Bridge.

I took this picture of Great Mell Fell from the road running around the base of Souther Fell which links Scales and Mungrisdale. This is another lovely route to walk along.

and looking back along the road.

The sign on the tree is asking cyclists to "slow down through the farm". Personally, I think it would be better to, , , ,

, , , , warn them that there's a gate across the road.

Behind the car park is Mungrisdale Limekiln. I would try to explain how it works but the sign does a better job than I ever could.


David Hall -
Lake District Walks