3rd May 2017

Visiting Fairfield, a mini walking project - Walk No 8 - from Cow Bridge via Dovedale, Dove Crag and Hart Crag

Time 7:10am to 12:10pm
Duration 5 hr
Distance 10.2 mile
Ascent 3100 ft or somewhere around that figure
Walking with On my own
Cow Bridge - Brothers Water - Hartsop Hall - Dovedale - Dove Crag - Hart Crag - Link Hause - Fairfield - Cofa Pike - Deepdale Hause - Sleet Hause - Mossydale - Deepdale - Wall End - Deepdale Hall - Deepdale Bridge - Cow Bridge
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre -
Car park, Cow Bridge, Hartsop

Found within easy reach of the beautiful Brothers Water, and Dovedale, the car park at Cow Bridge is a popular place for those who are looking for an easy stroll through picturesque countryside. Those who are looking for a longer day on the higher fells will also find this a great place to begin a walk. The more inventive fell walker will find this a great place to devise less obvious but thoroughly enjoyable routes.

Parking is free.

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


Todays Fairfield walk would see me setting off from Cow Bridge again. This time I'd be walking past Brothers Water which was just lovely at this time of morning with it's reflections, the sunshine lighting up the area and the surrounding fells still topped with cloud. I could have stayed here all morning but I had a walk to be getting on with. So, with a feeling of 'how lucky am I to have seen this', I press on and head towards Hartsop Hall.


Heading along the track above Brothers Water. Peaceful or what !!

On route into Dovedale there's a nice view across the fields to High Hartsop Dodd.

Despite the amount of cloud, I walk through Dovedale full of confidence that it would clear up before too long. What I can't help but notice is the rate at which the clouds are moving across the sky.
What a brilliant place !

Searchlights in Dovedale.

Higher up now and the valley has more or less been left behind and the route I'm taking narrows as it follows the course of he beck. There's something magical about walking in enclosed places like this with rocks and crags towering above you.

For a little while now I have a fantastic view of Dove Crag which, from this angle looks nothing like the gentle fell walked over on the Fairfield Horseshoe. Over there on the right hand side of the beck you can make out the path that takes you under the Priest's Hole cave to bring you out on the ridge between Dove Crag and Hart Crag. Rather than going that way, I'm wanting to gain the ridge on the High Pike side of Dove Crag so I stick to this side before heading off path.

I'm off path now and here I look back for a view down the side of Hartsop Above How.

And a wider view.

And as if by magic, I'm only a short walk from the top of Dove Crag. It was here that I lost any shelter I'd had from the wind. Crickey, it wasn't half wild up here, just as they said it would be.

Dove Crag summit.

As I walk off Dove Crag I begin to wonder what the wind will be like when I'm clambering over Cofa Pike. It was difficult to walk in a straight line across here and as I don't have a death wish I told myself if it was too bad as I headed from Fairfield to Cofa Pike I'd drop down to Grisedale Tarn instead and walk back via Grisedale and Patterdale.
OK, plan "B" was in place and I'll assess conditions later.

Heron Pike and Great Rigg, very hazy behind.

Fairfield seen across Link Hause.

Fairfield number 8 - I'm sitting in the shelter holding the weather meter above my head and I decide if it's 39mph up here is likely to be less than that when I reach Cofa Pike. I press on but plan "B" was still an option at this stage though.
Almost forgot to say, , , , yet again I had the place to myself. In fact, the first person I saw since setting off was at Deepdale Bridge.

Cofa Pike and St Sunday Crag.

The view back to Fairfield.

Not the clearest picture but that's Deepdale down there. A fantastic quiet place and I'm really looking forward to walking its full length again.

I don't mind admitting the walk down there was much easier said than done. Very gusty indeed, with hands as well as feet in contract with the rock. I suspect it was probably made more manageable because of how often I do this stuff and the number of times I've already been up and down there.
Here's Cofa Pike seen from the start of the path into Deepdale.

Looking back up to Cofa Pike and Deepdale Hause.

And again from further down the valley.


Peace and quiet as I walk past the Mossydale section of Deepdale.

Another valley and another fantastic secluded place.

It hadn't exactly been cold, but it wasn't until somewhere through here that I started to feel any proper heat from the sunshine. Walking through here in warm sunshine was a really nice way to end a morning which had been spent being blown about up on the fells. Best of both worlds so to speak.

Place Fell and Angletarn Pikes.


I've enjoyed this view a few times over the last month and every time I've had that feeling of satisfaction when I look back over to the fells I'd visited earlier in the day.

And to finish, I look through the valley towards Brothers Water.

David Hall -
Lake District Walks