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Tuesday, 22 March 2016

Heughscar Hill and Dunmallet (Wainwright's Outlying Fells)

Chapter 48 - Heughscar Hill

Chapter 47 - Dunmallet

Sunday 20th March.

After the previous day's exertions round Devoke Water I  had just about decided to take a rest day.

What changed my mind was breakfast.

Yesterday Bowland Climber had us stop to buy eggs at Crosbythwaite Farm before descending back into Dunnerdale. I was given two of those eggs, and boiled they provided that breakfast along with toast and marmalade, and my usual multi cups of tea; I was re-energized and raring to go.

Tea generates the return to life in the morning, but by ten I get the jangles for coffee, and that coincided with my arrival at Askham. Askham is a sort of model village on the Lowther Estate which is also the venue of Askham Hall where there are various visitor attractions and a café, but BC had recently done Heughscar Hill and told me about the village shop which also has a couple of tables and serves coffee etc., and the present owners have only been there a few months, so I wanted to support these people in what is likely to be a precarious existence - long may village shops continue.

A steady climb on immaculate close cropped turf took me to the summit of Heughscar in about half an hour. The views overlooking Ullswater were magnificent, and further dramatically enhanced with the Striding Edge face of Helvellyn high up in the background still with lingering snow.

Well established tracks lead onto the old Roman road of High Street, a visit to the Cop Stone, and then a small stone circle, and back to Askham with views across to Lowther Castle.

From the summit of Heughscar I could see the small prominence of Dunmallett above Pooley Bridge, another of W's Outlying Fells, but I knew that the bridge had been destroyed by recent floods and it would be an unreasonably long detour to get there compared with the ten minute drive from Askham with the bridge in operation.

As I arrived back at my car a fell running guy also arrived at his car. He had just run twenty-two miles from here up to Thornthwaite Beacon and back! We had interesting conversation and he then told me that today was party-time at Pooley Bridge because they had installed a new crossing there and celebrations were the order of the day.

There were cars and people everywhere. I managed to park up the hill outside Pooley Bridge then walked through Pooley and over the new (probably temporary) bridge. Dunmallet is ascended through trees and is also wooded at the summit with no views. There is supposedly the site of a fort on top, but Wainwright says quite rightly, "...and for a learned few the remains (barely distinguishable) of a fort..."

That was a damn good day out.


Welcoming committee - just a few yards from the car

Helvellyn across Ullswater from near the top of Heughscar 

That is the scar of Heughscar on the left. The brown humpy hill at the righthand end of Ullswater is Dunmallet

Zoom to Ullswater from Heughscar

The Cop stone on High Street - walkers on the old Roman road in the distance

Lowther Castle

A bit of history. First day of the replaced Pooley Bridge. Dunmallet path goes straight up from across the bridge.

Dunmallet summit

The best of a bad job - just about the only view from Dunmallet


Anonymous said...

Your luck was in with that bridge.

afootinthehills said...

I agree on the tea and coffee addiction Conrad. On the alcohol front, we remember having the nicest pints of Guinness we've ever had at Pooley Bridge after a day on the fells, though I can't remember which ones.

A fair bit of snow on Helvellyn by the looks of it.

gimmer said...

You do get about don't you - good work.
Is the aim to do the whole set before you go caravanning ?
Many happy memories of Pooley from childhood - we knew the postmistress and her foxhunting sons - jolly good people.
We inspected the ruins of the old bridge at Christmas - it is interesting that sappers used to able to span a river for main battle tanks to cross in a few hours but now it takes three months for cars and light goods lorries - the march of progress, it would seem.

Sir Hugh said...

BC - Serendipity.


Afoot - It's strange but I have only passed through there a few times over the years - it was a bit busy for my liking on this day.


Gimmer - The intention is to make the best of every day doing what I like doing best whenever that is possible. There is no way I will complete this lot before I go off next Wednesday 30th March. There are still 13 chapters of W's book to do involving 40 summits. The same thoughts about the bridge occurred to me also - I haven't read much about it and wonder if there is any intention of putting something more aesthetic there in the fulness of time?

afootinthehills said...

We have only been once to Pooley Bridge around 1980 and it seemed busy then. I assume your caravanning trip has a little to do with Marilyn hunting so good luck with that.

Sir Hugh said...

Afoot - Yes, I am off to a small site near Ludlow to mop up a few more of my 27 remaining English Marilyns (or read some books if the weather is too bad).

AlanR said...

Cracking day and very nice photo's. I like the timberjack behind the horse's.

Roderick Robinson said...

Terrible news. A championship-winning fell runner - a breed of person you tend to deify - has been done for stabbing someone, perhaps to death, the details aren't to hand. Must all our personal gods have feet of clay? A woman, too. Should that make a difference?

Sir Hugh said...

Alan R.- - I am sorry to say that the original photo was cropped because it showed too much of your beloved lump of machinery taking away the attention from the main subject. Having said that I do keep my eyes open for what I, as a raw layman, regard as possibly unusual samples of our agricultural machinery heritage.

RR - I have no doubt the at all that the victim deserved their comeuppance.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a great day of walking. Love the stone circle and hooray about the bridge :)