1st February 2015

Visiting the Lake District Tarns - Walk No 10

Carlside Tarn


Walk Overview
Time 9:55am to 1:25pm
Duration 3 hr 30 min
Distance 6.2 mile
Ascent 2500 ft
Walking with On my own
Near Ravenstone Hotel - Ling How - The Edge - Ullock Pike - Longside Edge - Carlside Tarn - Carlside - White Stones - Long Doors - Dodd Wood - path back to the car
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Roadside spaces, Ravenstone Hotel, Bassenthwaite

There are a few different parking areas along the road between the main car park at Dodd Wood and the Ravenstone Hotel so I have grouped them all together into one.

An obvious circular walk in this area is an ascent of Carl Side via the Ullock Pike ridge and then descending back to the valley by way of Dodd. Should this be your choice of walk then the starting point along this section of road is irrelevant.


Weather Readings

The Gadget
All readings were taken using a Kestrel 2000 Weather Meter
Live temperature recorded at the time I press the hold key
Maximum Wind Speed Maximum wind speed since the weather meter was turned on at each location Average Wind Speed
Average wind speed since the weather meter was turned on at each location
Wind Chill
Combination of wind speed and temperature. The gadget does the calculations not me.

Route Map


It doesn't take long to gain height on this walk because it's a steep one right from the start. Only ten minutes after setting off and I'm high enough to be treated to this view across Bassenthwaite Lake to Sale Fell and Ling Fell.

The shady bits are cropped out and I'm left with a picture of Bassenthwaite Lake, the Lord's Seat fells and the higher north western fells over on the left.

Binsey is seen over there behind Watches; found at the bottom of the ridge.

I knew I'd be in the sunshine for a little while once I gained the ridge and I also knew I'd be treated to a view of Skiddaw looking its absolute best.


Into the shade again on route up Ullock Pike.

Skiddaw and Skiddaw Lower Man.

The top of Ullock Pike is reached and the view open up instantly. If I was ungrateful I'd say it was a shame the sun was shining in my face but I'm not because this was truly fantastic. I'd rather have bright sun in my eyes than rain running down the back of my neck any day.

A view back along the ridge to Ullock Pike. The Scottish hills are visible in the far distance beyond the Solway Firth.

Not far to Long Side summit now and here the spindrift began to coat the left hand side of me with a fine covering of snow. It left the side of my face feeling like it had just been slapped and as someone prone to cold sores, I knew the next couple of days were going to be uncomfortable. More than worth it though.


Here's another view looking back towards Ullock Pike. You can see that every area of higher ground has a covering of snow.

Blimey, the weather meter tells me the wind chill is -18.8 deg C. Thankfully I'd been before I set off so there was no chance of me suddenly needing pee.
What's wrong with saying that, , , , I mean, you have to think of these things don't you.

Long Side summit.

Straight ahead of me is Carl Side. I'm going to the summit but not until I've walked around the left hand side to get to the tarn first.

Looking back across to Long Side and Ullock Pike.

Okay, there's no a lot of water on view today but this is Carl Side Tarn.

Carl Side summit in front of Skiddaw Little Man.

Heading down to White Stones.

Turning to the left and I see across to the eastern fells. There seems to be a little more cloud over there and I couldn't help but think the big one in the middle looks like some sort of creature from one of those wildlife programs on telly.

"It's like a different world down here" I said to these two guys. "is it cold on top" "Yeah, just short of minus 19 wind chill". "O God, my feet are freezing already".
I'm not having a go at cyclists because I used to cycle a couple of hundred (road) miles a week myself, but I just don't get this.

In the distance you can see Dodd and to state the obvious, I'm at White Stones.

That's a better view of Dodd. Taken from the path between White Stones and, well, Dodd I suppose.

Down at Long Doors.

What a difference from last month when I was here. On that occasion it was really hard to stand up against the wind and it was a case of would we or wouldn't we get caught in a torrential downpour.

A slightly hazy view across to the north western fells.


Looking across Bassenthwaite Lake to Barf and Lord's Seat.

The path passes next to Skill Beck before reaching the car park and tearooms. With all the trees and mosses and ferns, and with it being quite enclosed, you could imagine this being in a rainforest somewhere.
Now for the nice one mile walk through the woods to reach the car.

Sandhills Farm seen in front of Bassenthwaite Lake and Sale Fell. Admittedly this isn't the longest walk but the conditions were as good as it gets and this is one I'll remember for a long time.

David Hall -
Lake District Walks