Walk                       : Crinkle Crags and Bowfell (via a few detours !!)

                                                  Date                       : 21st July 2012

                                                  Weather                 : Fine, at times overcast and warm around 19° C

                                                  Route Details          : Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel, Stool End Farm, Crinkle Crags, Bowfell, The Band, Old Dungeon

                                                                                                  Ghyll Hotel

                                                  Distance                 : 11 miles

 

                                                            Click here to see which part of Lakeland this walk is situated ….

 

                                                 Overview

                                                 After the rubbish July weather and numerous aborted attempts to travel to Lakeland and try out this epic Fell Walk at long last

                                                                         the rain and low cloud gave way to higher pressure, clear visibility and even a bit of sunshine – too good of an opportunity to miss.

                                                                         The route I took had many “detours” (not all planned) and the pull up to the main ridge was arduous, once on the ridge however you

                                                                         get to understand why Wainwright called this “Lakelands finest ridge mile”

 

 

The walks starts from the National Trust car park at the Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel. Here the “crinkles” can be seen in the centre

of the picture and also “The Band” that is in effect one of the spines of Bowfell and also my route back down later on

 

 

The Langdale Pikes on the opposite side of the valley from the foot path along to Stool End Farm

 

 

A closer view of Crinkle Crags and The Band with the deep ravine of Crinkle Ghyll gouging through the centre

 

 

Crossing Oxendale Beck

 

 

Approaching Stool End Farm

 

 

At the head of the valley - Rossett and Black Crags

 

 

And across the valley to the unmistakable steep sided outline of Pike O Stickle

 

 

Through the farm and the start of the path that runs alongside Oxendale Beck

 

 

At the moment clear blue skies and not a rain cloud in sight

 

 

The Ghyll in detail and the start of what was to be several “off piste” detours

 

 

The spectacular Whorneyside Force

 

 

…. and from higher up

 

 

Looking back to the Langdales from left to right – Pike O Stickle, Loft Crag, Thorn Crag and Harrison Stickle

 

 

Still off the beaten track so to speak - but here a cracking view of Pike O Blisco

 

 

After an intense amount of scrambling Im back on the main ridge now and looking back down the magnificent Langdale valley

 

 

After negotiating the first “crinkle” the path leading to the second (and highest crinkle – Long Top) is blocked by what Wainwright

called “the most difficult obstacle met on any of the regular walkers paths in Lakeland” – this is “The Bad Step”. It consists of

two massive chock stones that block the way up the gulley to the summit of Crinkle No. 2. At over 10 feet high there seems no

obvious path – however the red line indicates how, with a bit of scrambling and knee work it can be over come. For those not wishing

to be so adventurous – a pathway to the left can also be used

 

 

Now the views really start to open up and here across Eskdale – the mighty Scafells

 

 

 

Onwards though and on to the third crinkle to form an orderly queue

 

 

But well worth the wait as you get a fine view of the second of the day`s objectives for me – Bowfell

 

 

And a close up of Scafell Pike - and it seems as though this has been a popular choice of fell walkers today – these people enjoying the views from the highest point in England

 

 

The path from “Three Tarns” that will take me up to Bowfell summit

 

 

When you see a cairn always add to it with a stone (or boulder) of your own choosing so as to maintain the navigational aid for others, but somehow I don’t think my “addition” to the

top of this one will stand the test of time especially after the first gust of wind !!

 

 

I got down to Three Tarns just before the start of the pull up to Bowfell here looking over to the Scafells - awesome

 

 

Time for some more serious leg work now as I reach the start of the rocky path up to the summit of Bowfell

 

 

A quick glance back (and a breather) to look back from where I had come from as I gain height

 

 

And there is the pyramid-like summit of Bowfell – Wainwright described this as a true mountain, not a fell - and from this angle it`s hard to disagree

 

 

As the summits gets ever nearer it becomes a scramble over the “boulder highway”

 

 

Made it !!!

 

 

Bowfell occupies a central position between three valleys – Langdale, Langstrath and here Eskdale with Lingcove Beck snaking its way along the valley floor. In the top right

of this shot is Devoke Water in the distance

 

 

Mickledore separating the two Scafells

 

 

On the way back down from the summit and I pass the natural feature that A.W. called “The Great Slab” see his drawing of it here

 

 

The gentle path down “The Band” that leads to the valley floor back at Stool End Farm

 

 

On the valley floor and one last glance back at the “crinkles” and the end of a fantastic walk

 

 

And what better way to round off a perfect day than a pint (or three) of Wainwright’s in the New Dungeon Ghyll

 

 

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