21st March 2013

Green Crag from Jubilee Bridge


Walk Overview
Time 08.40 to 13.00
Duration 4 hr 20 min
Distance 6.7 mile
Ascent 1800 ft
Walking with Jennifer
Jubilee Bridge - Doddknott Gill - Spothow Gill - Ulpha Fell - Green Crag - Low Birker Tarn - Low Birker - Doctor Bridge - Eskdale Road - Jubilee Bridge
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Roadside parking, Jubilee Bridge, Hardknott Pass

Hardknott Pass has got to be one of the steepest and most difficult roads in the country. In fact, many people make the effort to drive all the way around to this part of the Lake District just to face the challenge. I should point out that this road can be extremely dangerous during the winter months and is best avoided altogether if the weather is at all frosty. I was caught out myself on one occasion when using the route as a shortcut over to Cockley Beck. Just above the steepest of the bends the road turned into an ice rink and I had no alternative than to reverse back down until I reached a convenient turning place; not an experience I'm keen to repeat.

The car park has room for about ten cars, but should you find it full, there is usually room a little further along the road into Eskdale.

Route Map

Don't be shy, just tell them to get out of the way.

Eskdale was already enjoying the early morning sunshine as we made our way up the side of Harter Fell. According to last night's news it's 'officially' spring now. Well, if the person who made that decision had been out here with us today they'd have changed their minds as quick as a flash. Believe me, winter is still very much in control for the time being.
I seem to remember this time last year I was walking in shorts and tee shirt.

A close up of Slight Side and Scafell (topped with cloud).

and looking around, Esk Pike, Bow Fell and Crinkle Crags.

Now for a wider view showing everything from the previous two pictures.


There was quite a lot of ice on the ground up here and although it was easily avoided because of the prediminately grassy terrain, you can't be too careful.

Harter Fell seen across an area of normally very boggy ground.

Heather covered slopes like this don't make for the quickest or easiest walking, although with the place being semi frozen as it was today, we seemed to be covering ground much quicker than expected.

I wonder how loud the bang was when this thing hit the ground.

That's Green Crag up there. There was nothing complicated about the next bit of the route. Simply walk up to the lowest point on the skyline in as straight a line as possible.

Almost at the top now and even at the relatively low height of 1500ft the wind dragged the temperature down and made us think a little more about what we were doing.

Green Crag summit. Blue sky, sunshine, a little snow on the ground and a bone chilling easterly wind.

"Should I move out of the way"
"No it's okay, it's too cold to hang about. As soon as I've taken the picture we need to get moving again"

On the descent, it was easier to pick our way through the rocks than stick to the icy path.

Down there in the centre of the picture is Low Birker Tarn. That's where we're heading for next.

Low Birker Tarn.

On a clear day like this one you'd have to be pretty useless to lose this path. Having said that however, if the cloud was down the the rain was pouring it's perfectly understandable how people could wander off the route. As the previous two and the next picture show, this is not somewhere you want to be groping about trying to work out where you are.

Looking back to Green Crag; the more pointed one on the right.

All of a sudden the view opens up and you have this fantastic view down to Eskdale.

"Why didn't you sit round the other side to get a view down to Eskdale"
"Because this side was in the sun and less windy, and the other side was in the shade and more windy. Besides, there was a ready made seat here. Just wide enough for 1, , , and yes, I know my place."


Doctor Bridge.


Wha House Farm in front of Harter Fell.

and again. This time seen from a short distance further along the road.

Hardknott Gill flows under the road and joins forces with the river Esk near Brotherilkeld Farm.

David Hall -
Lake District Walks