13th March 2016

Stybarrow Dodd to High Rigg from the bottom of Sticks Pass

Time 8:25am to 3:30pm
Duration 7 hr 5 min
Distance 12 mile
Ascent Somewhere about 3800 ft
Walking with Rod Hepplewhite
Stanah - Sticks Pass - Stybarrow Dodd - Watson's Dodd - Great Dodd - Calfhow Pike - Clough Head - White Pike - the Old Coach Road - Wanthwaite - Wanthwaite Bridge - Yew Tree Farm - St John's in the Vale Church - High Rigg - High Rigg Tarn - Long Band - road back to Stanah
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre -
Parking spaces, Stanah (St John's in the Vale)

This small car park fills up very quickly indeed. It generally overspills onto the area near the A591 junction, but even the spaces along here have a tendency to be taken before mid morning.

Found at the bottom of Sticks Pass, the car park is a good place to begin an ascent of the Dodds or even a nice alternative to the Helvellyn Ridge.

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




According to last night's forecast there was a strong chance of us seeing cloud inversions in the Lake District today. Sadly for us, the only cloud we saw on the drive here and at the start of the walk was above us instead of below us. Never mind, it would have been a bonus for the walk but dry and windless are always good enough. In fact, walking up here was dry, windless and VERY hot indeed. From this point I did the rest of the walk in short sleeves. At this rate I'll be in shorts before too long.

It doesn't show too well on a photo but Thirlmere was mirror smooth this morning.

Looking up Stanah Gill from the sheepfold.


No skiers out today and if it stays this warm the snow won't last much longer.

Looking over the top of Sticks Pass to Raise.


As I said earlier; the forecasters hinted that some of the tops may be above the cloud this morning and there they are. Although the valleys in our area we were all free of cloud.

A patchy snow view of Helvellyn Lower Man and Helvellyn.

Great Dodd seen from Watson;s Dodd.


Great Dodd summit.

Looking ahead to Calfhow Pike and Clough Head from the route down from Great Dodd.

Here we stand on Calfhow Pike for a few minutes looking back across to Great Dodd.

Clough head was reached at the same time as three other people. 2 runners who were walking and a walker who asked them how she could get down to Threlkeld Knotts from here.
Even on a cloudy day with no sunshine the view across to the northern fells still has the wow factor.

White Pike in front of Great Mell Fell and Little Mell Fell.
"you ready for something to eat"
"yes but I can wait till we get we get down to The Old Coach Road"

Blencathra seen from White Pike.

Down on The Old Coach Road now and although we were off these fells we still have about 5 miles of walking left on the walk - brilliant!

Lunch was accompanied by the sound of those guys down there on their bikes.



Ahead of us is Yew Tree Farm (not the Miss Potter one). To get there we follow this road which would fill any Roman road builder pride.

At the end of the 'Roman' road I take this picture of Row End (the farm) and Blencathra (the big hill on the right). You can also see the top of Lonscale Fell behind the hill behind the farm.

On route up to the church we get our first view into St John's in the Vale.

Just as we'd given up all hope of seeing any blue sky this happens.
Here on the walk up High Rigg we look across towards Threlkeld and Blencathra.

"would you go up in one of those"
"not a chance"
"why not"
"the picture on the right sort of hints at the reason"

Behind us we see the brightness working its way across to the Skiddaw fells. As nice as it was, it didn't last much longer.

Clough Head and the Dodds.

High Rigg summit.


High Rigg Tarn.

It seem that someone turned the lights down as we made our way across this end of the ridge.

Looking through St John's in the Vale to Blencathra.

That's all for today folks. From here it's a short walk back to the cars where the most noticeable thing was the lack of traffic as we walked along the main road. If they could just get that road open again on Dunmail Raise, I promise never to moan about having to dodge the cars along here again.

David Hall -
Lake District Walks