21st February 2015

Visiting the Lake District Tarns - Walk No 16

Rough Hill Tarn

Time 9:30am to 12:50pm
Duration 3 hr 20 min
Distance 9.5 mile
Ascent 1100 ft
Walking with On my own
Askham - Heughscar Hill - Askham Fell / Moor Divock - Heltondale - Rough Hill Tarn - Heltondale - Helton - Askham Church - Askham
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre - Askham Village

Askham village has more than enough roadside parking, but this is one of the prettiest villages in the Lake District, so the decent thing to do is make use of the well hidden car park. It is free, it's out of site and it is a shame not to use it.



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


I'm in Askham this morning because the bloke on the telly told me it would be sunnier in the north east of Cumbria today. I'm not sure if the people that present the weather are on a performance related pay rise scheme but if today is anything to go by the fella who predicted this should be in for a decent rise this year.


From the same place as the previous picture I look around for a view back to Askham.

I'm not sure how these lot feel but having a fringe like that would drive me totally crazy. Actually, having a fringe of any length would be more than I could put up with these days.


It looks steeper than it feels. Walking around here is nice and gentle but no less enjoyable and places where you need to put more effort in.

Once you each the this end of the tree line it's only a short walk to the top where for such a small hill, the views are surprisingly good.

Heughscar Hill summit.

Just a cross from the summit and I look towards Ullswater and the Eastern Fells.

Passing by the sheepfold (bield) on route down from Heughscar Hill.

Lots of paths crisscross this area but this one is the main route between Pooley Bridge and the road above Helton. That's me at the bottom of the picture and that's Heughscar Hill up on the right.

Cop Stone with Loadpot Hill in the distance.

I crossed straight over the first road I came to and headed past Widewath farm to reach Heltondale. That's still Loadpot Hill in the distance.

Following the farm lonning down to the Heltondale road.




My route took me past the site of Widewath Mill (twice). I'd love to have had a sneaky look inside but thought better of it. There was a gate between me and the building and the door had a padlock on it. It seems to be in decent condition so would make someone a really nice house. If they didn't mind running the risk of getting flooded.

Despite walking next to a road for quite a while this place has a wonderful feeling of remoteness about it.

Looking towards Loadpot Hill.

I look across to the farms dotted high up on the fellside above Heltondale and can't help but think living in them would be a bit too remote.

And here's the middle section of Rough Hill Tarn.

and here's the whole thing. I've only been here once before and that was in the middle of summer (pre website days). On that occasion the reeds were so thick I could hardly see any water at all. This is much better.

I know I walked here today, but the red car over there proves that this is a tarn you could visit without having to walk more than ten yards. Or, if it was raining, you wouldn't really need to get out of the car at all. Walking is much more fun though, even if you didn't do the full nine and a half miles I walked today.

Right, I've visited the tarn and now I'm heading back the way I'd just came. There was a bit of road walking later on but to state the obvious, all of this section can be done without setting foot on the road itself.

I'm back at Widewath Mill and this time I nip down for a picture of the bridge.

Helton was busier than I'd expected it to be today. On the short walk through the village I got 5 good mornings and 1 friendly wave from someone working in their garden.

Helton countryside.

Time for something to eat and as seen as though I'm sitting on a stone in this field, I may as well follow the footpath through the field and onto Askham Church.

Not far from the church now. The big building you can see in the distance is Askham Hall.
"Ask 'em all what"
"Sorry it's my accent. Not ask them all, , , Askham Hall"

You couldn't make it up could you !!
Outside Askham church

and here's a picture of the inside of the church.

After leaving the church, all that remains for me is to walk up the lower half of the village, turn right at the shop and then onto the car park. On a day like this you can't deny that Askham is one of the nicest of all the Lakeland villages. Untouched by tourism in the way many other places have been and it still has that proper village feel to it where almost all the houses are occupied by the people that actually live in them.


David Hall -
Lake District Walks