6th July 2013
Walk two from a weekend camping trip based at Gillside Farm, Glenridding. I joined Neil Haslewood and David Hall for this ascent of Fairfield via Deepdale.
Scroll down for photos and a description of the walk....
The scene at Gillside Farm, with Birkhouse Moor basking in the early morning sunshine.
Our walk started from Deepdale Bridge at 09:00hrs and took the farm track alongside Sand Gill, before heading south-west into Deepdale.
That's Greenbank Farm in front of Arnison Crag and on the right, the long ridge which is Hartsop-Above-How extends across the horizon.
Hart Crag & Greenhow End
As we walk into Deepdale, the imposing crags of Greenhow End remain in sunshine as Fairfield attracts clouds, made from the cool moist air blown in from the Irish Sea. Would this spoil our walk? No waterproofs packed today. Link Hause is the dip between Hart Crag and Fairfield. Link Cove (out of sight) is reputed to be one of the finest examples of a hanging valley.
Neil and David
Head deeper into Deepdale. And the subject matter of their conversation? Well, I think it might have been about the right amount of leg that a man can reasonably show to the world in weather like this.
There is a Wainwright-approved route up the left-hand side of Greenhow End and it "is for experienced scramblers only, in fine weather."
On the left is a dry tarn, one of those with no obvious outflow and suffering from a lack of inflow. The waterfalls hint at a sudden increase in gradient on the way to Deepdale Hause.
To Deepdale Hause
The cloud was slowly lifting as we arrived at the hause; Neil is targetting Cofa Pike as he counts down the number of "Birketts" left to do.
Cofa Pike is part of Fairfield, but missed by those on the Fairfield Horseshoe and so becomes a separate challenge for those with lists to tick.
This happens to be my first direct ascent of Fairfield, all the umpteen previous visits have been subsequent to conquering some other nominated peak on the way. Tick the box, Richard.
Cofa Pike from Fairfield
Fairfield Summit Area
Fairfield has no summit cairn, the large flat expanse has several man-made shelters and cairns and you can take your pick. What a shame the pioneers of mountaineering didn't build a fine cairn - or maybe they did and the wreckers did the rest!
To Hart Crag
Not quite the summer's day we were expecting, yet...
Hart Crag Summit
The young lady is reading a guide book, not one of the Pictorial Guides, but maybe one of the associated books.
Hartsop Above How
Sometimes, the early starters reap the richest rewards and sometimes a later start might be advantageous. St.Sunday Crag is now clear of all cloud and looking to the north-east, the summer's day is well and truly here.
Summer in Lakeland
Walkers: Neil Haslewood, David Hall and me
Time taken: 6hrs 20mins over a distance of about 8 miles.
Route: Deepdale Bridge, Sand Gill, Deepdale, Deepdale Hause, Cofa Pike, Fairfield, Hart Crag, Hartsop-Above-How, Deepdale Park, Deepdale Bridge.
Weather and Conditions: Early sunshine, hilltop clouds a threat for a while and then a really fine summer afternoon, very warm.
Greetings Count: We met one walker in Deepdale. He looked a little concerned, the sort of look you see when someone has lost a dog. After that it was business as usual on Fairfield and fairly quiet on Hartsop-Above-How.
Refreshments: Neil and I had cool drinks at The Inn on The Lake at Glenridding - it's worth going there, so as to avoid the parking charges on the National Park car park.
All photos copyright Richard Ratcliffe 2013 ©
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