Saturday 11th August 2012
We had been invited to a help celebrate our nephew's 18th birthday with a meal out on Friday evening and a barbecue on Saturday afternoon and so with with the morning to fill we opted for what we expected to be a short walk up Great Mell. This was definitely a case of not doing enough research and just relying on the book to guide us. If I had of checked out the walk before we headed north we certainly wouldn't have descended the way we did.
Start: Brownrigg Farm (NY 4074 2468)
Route: Brownrigg Farm - Great Mell Fell (351) - Routing Gill - Brownrigg Farm
Distance: 2.75 miles Ascent: 328 metres Time Taken: 3 hours 10 minutes
Terrain: Good paths up with a vague path around the bottom of Great Mell.
Weather: Sunny and warm.
Pub visited: Highland Drove Inn, Great Salkeld Ale Drunk: Kylos Kushie
An easy start as we head into the shade of the path to Racy Cottage.
A break in the trees gives us our first view across towards the Gowbarrow fells.
Starting to climb with a view across Matterdale.
Clough Head and the Dodds come into view.
Looking across to the Dodds we are able to see most of the route we walked last September.
Having seen it on so many other people's websites I had to get my own photo of it.
Little Meldrum which we had originally planned on doing after this walk
As we climb higher the views get better, as Place Fell and the fells around the head of Ullswater come into sight.
After a slow and steady climb we reach the summit of Great Mell Fell.
A great view across to the Blencathra group of fells.
Although the fells down the Vale of Keswick weren't so clear in the haze.
Looking across the A66 and the little humps of Little Eycott and Eycott Hills.
The Pennines were also lost in the haze.
Rather than do an out and back trip we opted to follow Birkett's directions and made a very steep descent down the north side of Great Mell Fell, which isn't something I'd like to do if the grass was wet. Then when faced with the option of heading left or right we went right and followed the very vague grassy track behind the conifer plantation accompanied by views across to Souther Fell.
Once the vague grassy track entered the woods around the bottom of Great Mell Fell we were then presented with several fallen trees to negotiate and a lot of mud and ferns. Not a route I would do again, although I quite like Great Mell Fell and can easily see it becoming a popular walk for us to do when we are camping and want a late afternoon walk after we have pitched the tent.
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