OSWEN FELL, BURNBANK FELL, LOWESWATER END ON CARLING KNOTT, CARLING KNOTT, BLAKE FELL, SHARP KNOTT & HIGH HOWS from LAMPLUGH

 


Summary

Date - 5th July 2009 Distance - 6.5 miles
Map - OL4 Start point - Lamplugh, opposite the church (NY 089209)

 

Summits Achieved

Name Height (ft) Height (m) Grid Ref
Oswen Fell 1342 409 NY 1006 2095
Burnbank Fell 1558 475 NY 1099 2095
Loweswater End on Carling Knott 1703 519 NY 1209 2060
Carling Knott 1785 544 NY 1171 2031
Blake Fell 1878 573 NY 1104 1968
Sharp Knott 1581 482 NY 1069 2009
High Hows (Lamplugh) 1027 313 NY 0963 2020

 

Preface

"The weather looks good for Sunday, so lets hope Dad’s taking us walking", said Grizzly.

"Shall I go and find out?" asked Allen.

"Please", said Tetley.

So off he went, and was soon back, crying out "Yes, were going to do those other Loweswater Fells."

Shaun said, "it’s a long drive, so we had better have an early night as we will be starting off early in the morning."

 

The Walk

We got ready, when we heard Dad getting his gear in the car and then rushed out and settled on the front passenger seat. We had been to this area at the end of May to climb some other fells, so the route was familiar. We were starting at Lamplugh today, so called out to Dad when we saw the sign for the left turn along the narrow road. There was ample space opposite the church for Dad to park. When we got there it was raining and we were rather downhearted, but Dad said it would soon pass over. He was right and the rest of the day was dry with quite a lot of sunshine.

Before setting off, Dad took time to take some pictures.

Here is the church of St Michael, located on a former chapel site. One notable feature is its external bell tower containing two bells, one of which, is a well preserved 15th century bell with an inscription that it was made for Thomas Lamplugh.

This interesting archway intrigued us.

This is the entrance to Lamplugh Hall, now a farmhouse built in 1812 from the remains of a 15th century tower house. The first lord of the manor to take the name was Sir Robert de Lamplugh in the middle of the 12th century who had the church moved to its present location. He was followed by a long succession of Lamplughs many who were knighted for valour in the field of battle. Several of the family, were Sheriffs of Cumberland. We could see that on the arch, were the inscribed arms of John Lamplugh 1595. The heraldic colours, were a yellow background, with a black fleury cross.

"Hadn't we better get going Dad", called out Shaun, who had seen distantly some of the summits we had to reach today.

"OK", replied Dad, putting the camera away and collecting his stick and map.

A few yards along a sign by a gate pointed along a track.

Ahead to the left is Oswen Fell, our first objective and distantly to the right is Sharp Knott, over topped by Blake Fell, summits for later in the day. At the end of the field we reached a double gate and here, took the path climbing left to reach another gate. According to the guide Dad was using, we now had to climb up through trees, but these have since been felled. It was however rather rough going but he made short work of it and soon reached the fence. Once over this we were on open fell and a steady ascent soon bought us to the summit cairn, where Dad took our picture.

The next top Burnbank Fell was clearly seen ahead, and a path led easily down, and then rather steeply up to the summit, by the corner of the fence. Here we are on the cairn – well it’s about time we appeared.

We met a young man here, and Dad chatted to him. He was doing the Wainwrights and this was his 200th. We congratulated him and wished him well on the 14 he had left to complete them all. Looking at the above picture, we now went right alongside the fence. Blake Fell was ahead and a simple climb led to the summit. However for us we had to veer off and do two other tops first.

Descending we reached a stile in the fence, and once over immediately climbed another fence on the left. Distantly we could see the cairn marking the top of Loweswater End on Carling Knott. The ground was rough and rather boggy and this was the most arduous section of the walk. However Dad is well used to this type of terrain, and quite soon we were making the final ascent to the cairn. Not before we had this lovely view of the pretty lake Loweswater.

After having our picture taken sitting on the cairn we sat and marvelled at the views around.

This is Crummock Water, backed by the towering Grasmoor with Wandope and Whiteless Pike to the right. The slope in the right foreground is the end of the fell called Mellbreak, here in all its glory below. It you look carefully in the valley on the extreme right, you might just spot a round dark blob. This is in fact the Mosedale Holly Tree. The only tree in the valley, and actual mentioned on the Ordnance Survey map!

Finally we could see this group of fells known as the Fellbarrow Group. This was where Dad first met Uncle Bob. How blessed we were that day because of all the subsequent walks we have done with him, especially the exploration of Yorkshire.

"Time to be off again", said Dad.

We jumped into the rucksack and settled ourselves down. A clear path now led over grassy ground and after an initial descent, climbed quite gently to the large cairn/shelter at the summit of Carling Knott.

"Come on Dad, take our picture", cried Allen, as we scrambled on to the cairn.

Ahead and above was Blake Fell and we could see that there were quite a few people up there. This probably because it is the highest of this group of fells, and one of the Wainwright summits too, whereas Carling Knott is just a Birkett top. Consequently this is less frequented, so Dad was surprised to meet another couple as he was leaving the summit. They too were surprised to see us.

The narrow path over the craggy south eastern edge of the shoulder descended to a hollow. From here a steep rise faced us and Dad climbed steadily to the fence. Here a stile was crossed and we were soon at the cairn at the summit of Blake Fell. At 1878ft our highest point of the day.

"Look over there", called out Little Eric. "That’s Knock Murton above Cogra Moss. We climbed that last time we were in this area."

"That’s right", said Dad. "I do not know how I got to the top of that one, as it was so hot that day."

"Yes", replied Tetley. "Only dogged determination got you there, but at least it is done".

Clearly from here we could see the hump of Sharp Knott. This was our next summit, seen here backed by Oswen Fell, our first summit this morning.

From the col a short climb reaches the cairn on its top. Now if you cast your mind back you might recall the Nine Standards walk, and the fact that Dad lost his stick on Brownber Head. He had replaced it and had it with him today. Well at least up to this point, but as far as he can remember he left it on this top. It was about 2 miles to the car, and amazingly Dad did not miss it until he got there. What is he like? When he rang Uncle Brian to say he was safely down he also mentioned losing his stick. Uncle Brian's reply was that Dad should tie it to himself, preferably tightly around his neck!

Returning to the col, we then made the steep descent to come to the head of Wisenholme Beck, where it enters the forestry. Here the narrow path became a wide forest track. We walked this to a junction, then went right. The track bent left and left again and at this point we took a narrow path by the trees to a fence. Once there had been a stile but this has fallen into disrepair so Dad had to climb the fence. Immediately on the left another fence was crossed into an open field with long grass. A steady climb soon brought us to the single stone marking the top of High Hows our last summit today. Shaun is standing on the stone.

Looking back we could see Sharp Knott backed by Blake Fell.

Now the descent took us over fields and eventually down to a track. Here walking right we crossed a small stream and a stile to reach the point where we had taken the track left to Oswen Fell. Just a short retrace of the outward route brought us to the car. A good day, making a considerable dent in our outstanding Birkett Fells.

Once again thanks Dad for a thrilling day out.

We were early enough down for Dad to call at Greystone House in the village of Stainton for tea and cakes. Well we reckon he really deserved it too.

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