For newcomers

At the bottom of each post there is the word "comments". If you click on it you will see comments made by followers, and if you follow the instructions you may also comment and I always welcome that. I have found many people overlook this part of the blog which is often more interesting than the original post!

My blog nick-name is SIR HUGH. I'm not from the aristocracy - my middle name is Hugh which relates to the list of 282 hills in Scotland compiled by Sir Hugh Munro in 1891. I climbed my last one (Sgurr Mor) on 28th June 2009


Tuesday, 8 May 2018

Swindale and Gowther Crag

Saturday 5th May - Swindale and Gowther Crag

I walked part of this route with Bowland Climber in April 2016,

My objective today was to explore for a path running under Gowther Crag on the south-eastern side of Swindale that somebody, not sure who now, had told me about. It isn't marked on the map.

From the starting point the rising path to arrive at the col before descending into Swindale was pretty wet and boggy, but I managed to keep feet dry only wearing trail shoes. Descending I met a lady fell runner with two dogs for a brief chat.

Just before Swindale Foot a climber's path with BMC permitted access sign for Gowther Crag branches south, and turning the corner of a wall the path is then periodically signed by the RSPB all the way to Dry Grove Gill, and continues to meet the path that goes over into Mosedale After that I lost the path for a bit but found my way back across the river - the map shows a foot bridge, but it turned out to be just a pile of large rocks crossing the water, but no great problem to traverse. The walk under the crag through old woodland was delightful and a welcome change from the several times I have walked up or down Swindale on the road. My return journey had to be up the road, but there is no traffic and this is one of the most attractive valleys in the Lake District. I was able to get a closer look at the now landscaped and finished elaborate fish ladder structure that was still under construction when I was there with BC in 2016. It has moulded in to some extent, but it is a surprisingly complex affair intruding on the wild nature of this valley.


Looking down into Swindale from the col

Zoom from same col - Truss Gap Farm bottom right

Pleasant walking on the descent into Swindale

The fish ladder - photos from the road on other side below
Gowther Crag - it was largely in shadow but better photos later in day below

The pile of rocks across the river marked as footbridge on map

View up the end of Swindale from my lunching spot, now back on the northern side of the river

Gowther Crag - click to enlarge and climbers can be seen, and on photo below.

I was not aware of them until I saw these photos enlarged.

The old stepping stones above the fish ladder

The new footbridge

Fish ladder

Putting in fence posts. Contractors are Hanafins from Milnthorpe where I have bought lots of tanalised timber etc. for my various decking projects.


  1. A fine walk Conrad. Pictures are good. Glad you managed to get across the river.

  2. Glad you followed up on our trip.
    Wonder what happened to that footbridge?
    I seem to remember we had a long day.

  3. Alan R - The crossing was no problem. I reckon the abbreviation FB on the 1:25 OS map is often more wishful thinking than the real thing.

    BC - It was indeed a long day, and hot and thirsty. I remember us both stopping and without any communication we both sat down to rest at the same time, the only time I remember us taking another rest after our snack break. The final bit of walking was on idyllic cropped turf.

  4. I followed that path too Conrad, when I climbed Seat Robert a few years ago. It's a fine walk isn't it. I presume the fish ladder is necessitated by one of the many hydro schemes which seem to have rather stealthily appeared all over the lakes in recent years?

  5. beating the bounds - I'm sure we must have crossed paths at some time or other. If you want to look at Photoshop sometime re the maps please email -