HUTTON ROOF CRAGS & FARLETON KNOTT
from PLAIN QUARRY

 


Summary

Date - 24th February 2012 Distance - 8.75 miles
Ascent -
1550ft
Map - OL7 Start point - Plain Quarry (SD 5523 7616)

 

Summits Achieved

Name Height (ft) Height (m) Grid Ref
Hutton Roof Crags 899 274 SD 5560 7746
Farleton Knott 853 260 SD 5410 8037

 

Preface

Shaun with Little Eric hitching a ride on his back, trotted in to find Allen tapping away on Dad's laptop, with Tetley & Grizzly peering over his shoulder.

"What are you looking at?", asked Little Eric.

"The photos that Dad took last Sunday, when we walked to Walla Crag and along that ridge", replied Tetley. "It was a terrific day for the weather and Dad got some great shots of the mountains."

"Just look at that super one of Derwentwater deep inky blue", cried Grizzly. "That's sure to be in the story."

"I bring tea", said Shaun.

"Great", cried Allen, his eyes lighting up.

"I'll get the mugs and biscuits", said Tetley.

Once we were all contentedly settled with our steaming mugs of tea, Shaun then went on. "Dad plans to take us out on Friday, and wants us to come up with a suggestion."

"Why don't we stay local, for a change, as I have not explored much round here, being that the focus has been on the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales, since I was adopted", said Little Eric.

"I know", exclaimed Tetley. "We could climb Hutton Roof Crags and Farleton Knott. It is nearly ten years since those were last climbed, when only Shaun and I went walking."

"Sounds great, as it will progress my summit total and get me ever nearer the magic 1000", replied Allen enthusiastically.

"That's settled then, now we just need to get Dad to agree."

"I know", said Allen draining his mug, "you want me to go and ask."

As he trotted out of the room, Tetley said to Shaun, "you had better pour him another mug of tea for when he gets back, you know what a tea belly he is."

He was not long, and his face was wreathed in a smile. "Dad agrees", he said gratefully accepting the mug of tea.

 

The Walk

Friday dawned and as the curtains were pulled back, we saw that it was raining.

"Oh heck", said Little Eric rather dispiritedly.

"Don't be downhearted Lad. This will soon pass over and then we will have a good day", replied Dad. "We will just leave setting out for an hour or so"

How right he was, and we enjoyed a mostly sunny day, but there was a cold northerly wind especially on the tops.

We drove up the A6 passing through Carnforth, and beyond the motorway junction, at the next roundabout, we took the road to Burton in Kendal. Just before the village, we turned right to climb up and find the car park at Plain Quarry. When Dad had done this walk previously, there had always been problems finding the right path at the start, but since the Countryside Rights of Way act, it has now been made clearer with a map and signs. Just as well perhaps, as the walk instructions that we were using had been published about 15 years ago.

Passing through the kissing gate, we then followed a good path that climbed gently through the trees.

Our objective initially was to find the gate through the wall, on to the open fell. It is a long way up to the top of the woods and since the walk was published some areas have been felled too. However Dad just stuck to the path and eventually the gate came into view, with the path beyond stretching away.

As Dad strode on up the path and crested the rise, Tetley called out, "look there's the trig point marking the summit of Hutton Roof Crags."

As we reached it and Dad took off his rucksack, we scrambled out, Little Eric calling out, "can we sit on the top, while you take our picture?"

"It's far too windy", replied Dad.

"Lets try anyway", said Shaun trying to please his pal.

Well as soon as Shaun stood on the top, he was blown over, so that was the end of that, and instead we grouped ourselves at the bottom out of the wind.

There are a number of paths on this wide expanse, but Shaun said, we will be fine as long we we keep our heading aligned with Farleton Knott, roughly a north westerly direction".

"Thanks lad", replied Dad.

This is limestone country and there were some examples of limestone pavement, like this below.

As Dad strolled on, Shaun was reading the instructions, and scrutinising the map. "You need to keep and eye out, as we have to descend a small scar, called Uberash Breast."

"OK", replied Dad."

It was not too far before this was reached, and compared to many a craggy descent that has been undertaken in the Lakes, this was extremely simple, down to the extensive plain.

"I wonder how it got it's name?, said Grizzly.

The rest of us, Dad included, were at a loss to provide him with the answer, as too it appears is the Internet.

The way now led steadily down to reach the narrow road to Hutton Roof. As we arrived here the sheep suddenly began to baa loudly and follow Dad.

"Whatever's going on", cried Grizzly. "Is it you Shaun, or has word really got round that Dad is always taking pictures of sheep!"

Well as it turned out it was none of the above, rather it was the fact that the farmer had arrived with feed. By the looks of it they must have really been hungry.

When the walk was originally published there was no access to the land immediately opposite, but since the rights of way act, this is now access land with a stile and gate, so at the farmers wife's suggestion I went this way. Just beyond the fence more sheep of his flock, had come down and waited impatiently, baaing noisily, for their turn to be fed.

The track can be seen clearly in the above picture. Coming to a line of small limestone crags, we followed it up through them, and so come beside a tall wall.

"Were back on the original route", said Shaun, looking up from the instructions.

We were now starting to cross Newbiggin Crags. The path led on, and where the wall turned left, we went through the gate in the cross fence, and so keeping on by the wall. Glanced from the motorway, it looks as though Newbiggin Crags rises to Farleton Knott, but this is not in fact the case, as there is a geological fault between making Farleton Knott separate. Crossing this we soon made the easy climb to Farleton Knott, with its impressive cairn at the summit. Of course we later sat by this to have our picture taken.

From which, looking across to Newbiggin Crags, the fault line can be seen.

Although small in stature, Farleton Knott affords one wide open views, like across to the Lune Valley. Middleton Fell is to the left, its highest point being Calf Top at 1999ft while the higher fell to its right is Crag Hill at 2237ft.

I know its cold, but I'm hungry", said Tetley.

"I was just going to suggest having a snack here", replied Dad. "You had better get the sandwiches out for your pals, Allen.

"OK", he replied, slipping his rucksack off.

Lunch over, and settled in Dad's rucksack again, we descended to the fault depression, and then struck left to follow a path skirting the east side of Newbiggin Crags, and keeping to the right of a wall, so avoiding the farm, we arrived once again at the Hutton Roof road again, this time at its summit.

Directly opposite, was the path clearly signed Hutton Roof.

This was our route that after 1.3 miles would, skirting the north wide of Hutton Roof Crags, bring us to the village of Hutton Roof. In contrast to the south of England, we have had plenty of rain, which was reflected in the muddy path seen here below the trees bare of their foliage.

As we walked on the trees gave way and Allen piped up, "there is a fine view behind to Newbiggin Crags, and the path we walked round the east side can be clearly seen."

After a while the path began to descend more steeply, passing through crags by means of Blasterfoot Gap, beyond which we could finally see our objective Hutton Roof.

Raising his eyes to the skyline, Tetley called out, "that's Ingleborough."

"How right you are lad", replied Dad, snapping off a shot.

As we continued the descent, Little Eric suddenly called out, "just look at that large boulder seemingly balanced above the village."

This massive block of limestone is called Hanging Scar, and is described by Wainwright in his book Westmorland Heritage."This is a splendid example of a 'perched' limestone boulder and it is the biggest of its kind in the county"

Another fact about Hutton Roof, is that the Thirlmere Aqueduct that carries water from Thirlmere to Manchester, passes through here, and during the construction navvies lived in the village.

Dad strolled along the street, then we took the signed path right and followed this over pastures by Park Wood and then on through Hutton Roof Park. At one point we crossed a stile overshadowed by a group of trees, which we thought made a nice picture.

Finally we reached the road, gaining access via this substantial solid wooden kissing gate.

Now turning right it was just a half mile or so back to the start. Nice day, and after Dad's lay off, we are now getting our 2012 walks well underway.

"I suppose it's cafe time now, Dad", said Tetley laughingly.

"How did you guess", replied Dad innocently.

For this he went to the nearby Greenlands farm village, where he had a tasty lamb burger with a large bowl of chips and if course a pot of tea.

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