Lake District Walks
Date: 15th November 2005
Distance: 7.8 miles
Ascent: 2110 feet
Time: 4 hours 45 minutes
Start Grid Ref: NY266358
A lovely walk on the Uldale Fells, including Meal Fell and Great Sca Fell, in an underappreciated area of the Lake District.
Route Summary: Longlands - Longlands Beck - Trusmadoor - Meal Fell - Great Sca Fell - Knott - Great Sca Fell - Little Sca Fell - Brae Fell - Lowthwaite Fell - Longlands Fell - Longlands
1. Lisa and some of the local fell ponies
2. Early morning sunshine over Binsey
3. Lisa approaching the top of the pass of Trusmadoor
4. Burn Tod Gill
5. Binsey and Over Water from Meal Fell
6. Lowthwaite Fell
7. The large shelter on the top of Meal Fell
8. Meal Fell and Great Cockup from Great Sca Fell
9. Lisa looking for the view on Knott
10. Meal Fell and Great Cockup from Knott
12. On the top of Great Sca Fell
13. Lisa on Little Sca Fell
14. The large cairn on Brae Fell
15. Little and Great Sca Fell and Knott from Lowthwaite Fell
Walk Detail: It would have been rude to stay in Uldale without walking its fells so when the day dawned bright on the Tuesday morning this was a must.
An early highlight of the walk was a small group of fell ponies who trotted past us while we followed Longlands Beck upstream. Unfortunately I didn’t get the camera out quick enough to get a really good picture of them but there was something quite magical about seeing these wild creatures having the freedom to roam almost at will, unconstrained by walls and fences.
I had been looking forward to the small pass of Trusmadoor ever since I had read Wainwright's description and it did not disappoint. Meanwhile Burn Tod Gill was quite beautifully sandwiched between Burn Tod and Great Cockup.
The climb to the interesting summit of Meal Fell was enjoyable although quite unaccountably, and against all weather forecasts, low cloud blew over obscuring the top of Little and Great Sca Fell. The climb up to Great Sca Fell was surprisingly steep on grass but this was the last real climb of the walk.
Wainwright wrote that there was no path from Great Sca Fell to Knott and there never would be. If not a path there is now a definite trod which proved most helpful as the cloud had settled on the top all the way to Knott and most of the way back. My disappointment at not getting any views from Knott was tempered by the frankfurters Lisa had brought for our lunch.
The rest of the walk was basically a gratuitous exercise in peak bagging with very little effort involved. By the time we got back to Great Sca Fell the weather was as it should be and from all the tops we visited we had fine views looking north past Binsey to the Solway Firth.
Of the following hills we visited Brae Fell, where we sampled the delights of beef broth, was probably the best viewpoint as it also encompassed a good view of High Pike.
While some, including some walkers we chatted to on Brae Fell (the only ones we saw on the entire walk), are disparaging about the Uldale Fells, I found them delightful and quite captivating. For a while I wished I'd also taken the opportunity to bag Great Cockup but in reality it means I have a good excuse to go back to this area again.