BROCK BARROW, LOW LIGHT HAW & HIGH LIGHT HAW from SELSIDE BECK car park

 


Summary

Date - 15th March 2012 Distance - 4.25 miles
Ascent -
1040ft
Map -OL6 Start point - Car park by Selside Beck (NY 296909)

 

Summits Achieved

 

Name Height (ft) Height (m) Grid Ref
Brock Barrow 751 229 SD 2981 8981
Low Light Haw 820 250 SD 3015 9008
High Light Haw 860 263 SD 3033 9047

 

Preface

Little Eric and Shaun trotted in to find Allen tapping away on Dad's laptop, while Grizzly & Tetley, were pawing through a walk book.

"We bring tea", called out Little Eric.

"Great", replied Allen, abandoning the computer to get the mugs.

Then all settled with steaming mugs and biscuits, Shaun said, "what were you looking at?"

"Well", said Allen, "Dad says we are to walk tomorrow, but has left it up the us to decide what to do."

"We want to go to the Lakes, but on checking the weather, Allen reckons there will be heavy low cloud, so it does not seem worth going up high", went on Grizzly.

"We have thought about advancing your Outlyers, Little Eric, as this is the best chance you will have of completing a Wainwright challenge", went on Tetley.

"How kind and considerate of you all", replied Little Eric. "Dad already repeated about 100 of the 214 Wainwright fells so that you all could complete the challenge, which was quite enough, so I cannot expect him to now repeat a further 110 for me. So which Outlyer ones are you suggesting we do tomorrow?"

"We have come up with the idea of climbing those on the east side of Coniston Water, namely Brock Barrow, Low and High Light Haw", replied Grizzly. "They lead on to Top o'Selside, but we have all, you included, done that", he went on.

"That sounds just great and it will take my tally to 61, leaving just 43 to go", enthused Little Eric.

"We need to get Dad's approval", said Allen, draining his mug and strolling out of the room.

"Pour him another mug, for when he gets back", said Tetley. "You know what a tea belly he is!"

He was not long and his smiling face told us that Dad had agreed.

 

The Walk

The weather forecast Allen had seen was quite correct, and whilst the day stayed dry there was indeed low cloud covering the higher fells.

We took the route, as if we were going over to Eskdale, but at Lowick, took the right fork towards Coniston, then turning right to the tiny community of Nibthwaite, where we turned north on the east side of the Coniston Water, to park in the small area by Selside Beck.

"There appears to be a path from here beyond that barrier at the rear", remarked Shaun. "I guess it must climb up to the track on the ridge along which we will return, so if we can find it at the top, we can make this a truly circular walk."

"That's a good idea, lad, so you must all keep a look out later", replied Dad.

For the first part, we had to walk back along the road we had driven, to Nibthwaite, where we walked along the short narrow lane and on through the gate at the end.

In the wall on the left, can be seen the red painted wall post box, which on closer examination, we determined had been here for well over 100 years, as it had been installed during the reign of Queen Victoria.

Beyond the gate there were paths left and right. The one to the left would be our return, if we failed to find the path down to the car park. Walked right by the wall climbing steadily, Brock Barrow, our first objective dominating the view.

"There will be a junction soon", called out Shaun. "This path will continue ahead, to where the old path used go up the fell, but this is now choked with gorse. So instead we need to go left and make the ascent from that side."

The narrow path left climbed to level out by an old plantation with a ruined wall. Now we needed to go right, but there was no apparent path. So Dad just climbed the rough ground over a brow, where he then found the clear path, that would lead to the summit. Looking ahead, to a rock outcrop, this sheep was standing guard, like a sentinel.

Our way was past this outcrop, and as we approached the sheep naturally moved off. It was nevertheless a good vantage point, and at our suggestion Dad took this shot, looking down over Nibthwaite and the southern reaches of Coniston Water.

Despite its modest height Brock Barrow's summit is marked by a well constructed tall cairn, not dissimilar to the stone pillar on Bonscale Pike, above Ullswater. The original book on the Outlying Fells, refers to this as an unnamed summit, but subsequent to this it must have become named on the OS maps, and we consider it to be one of the fells making up this challenge.

"Right" called out Allen, unfurling the rope he carries on his rucksack, "I'll shin up to the top and secure the rope so that it will be easy for Little Eric to make the climb."

"Thanks pal", replied Little Eric with relief.

And, here we are.

"The last time we were up here was with Uncle Eric in 2006 on a gloriously clear day", said Tetley. "There is a truly magnificent view of the whole of Coniston Water, backed by the Coniston Fells. What a shame you cannot see it today, Little Eric."

"Never mind", he replied, "I will just have to look at the photo Dad took then."

In fact this was taken from the lower cairn, by the ruin, about 100 yards further ahead.

Coniston Water stretches away, with above left, Coniston Old Man, Swirl How, Black Sails & Wetherlam

From the second cairn, the route was right to soon reach our next objective Low Light Haw, that too has a substantial cairn.

Then down and up again to the final summit High Light Haw. Here too there is a cairn where today Dad took our picture, but the actual top is about 50 yards further on, unmarked amongst the heather and moss. Descending from here, Dad got us on to the main path, which we then followed in the direction of Top o'Selside.

"We should soon see the track from High Parkamoor, which we need to take", called out Shaun.

This indeed came into view, and we crossed to this, and then walked left. Not before however, as we had made our way down, we passed a blackfaced sheep sitting by the path. He was totally unfazed by us and sat contentedly while Dad snapped off a shot. Darn, and we had been doing so well, not seeing many sheep today. As we have said before, it is Dad's fingers that are dancing over the keys, so we really cannot object to including this picture.

The track was wide and stony, running straight and level for a stretch beside a substantial wall, before dropping down, eventually to lead all the way to Nibthwaite.

We were now looking for the path down to the car park, so we kept our eyes peeled.

Suddenly Shaun called out, "look the beck crosses the track here, and according to the map it is Selside Beck, which passes by the car park."

"Look", called out Grizzly. "There's a kissing gate on the right, so that must be the way down."

"Right", said Dad, "let's go", as he went through the gate.

At first we began to think that we had made a mistake, as the path went in completely the opposite direction. However soon it described a circle, leading unerringly to the car park.

"Time for refreshment now Dad?" said Tetley. "I know where you will be going too, Jane & Sam's at Low Newton.

"That's right lad, and I will take you all in too."

Ooh great", cried Little Eric.

Here he had the lovely piping hot vegetable soup with crusty bread. Of course too, he had a pudding, apple apricot and chocolate crumble with cream. This was absolutely gorgeous! Dad chatted to them and there was some of the usual banter.

Although only a short walk it had been nevertheless enjoyable and our pal Little Eric has ticked off another three outlying fells.

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