Yorkshire Dales Walks
Buckden Pike & Brown Haw
Date: 16th March 2009
Distance: 11.5 miles
Ascent: 1700 feet
Time:4 hours 45 minutes
With: On my own
Start Grid Ref: SD986757
A walk on to Buckden Pike before a pathless trudge through the heather and peat to Brown Haw.
Route Summary: Little Hunters Sleets - Tor Dike - Tor Mere Top - Buckden Pike - Windle Side - Brown Haw - Woodale Bents - Cover Bridge - Hunters Stone Bank - Little Hunters Sleets
1. Nidd Head from Hunters Sleets
2. Approaching Buckden Pike
3. The top of Buckden Pike
4. Airmen memorial
5. Brown Haw
6. Peat hags on Windle Side
7. Naughtberry Hill
8. Brown Haw from Flat Moss
9. The top of Brown Haw looking back to Buckden Pike
10. Little Whernside
11. The River Cover
Walk Detail: What should have been a bright sunny day was in fact made rather dull by some persistant high cloud.
The walk itself was, to be honest, a bit of a trudge. Lacking in any features of immediate interest until fairly late in the walk the first half was a tussle with the tussocks, hags and groughs of Buckden Pike and Brown Haw.
An exception was the redirection of the summit path to the top of Buckden Pike, a very worthwhile effort which should hopefully do something about the terrible erosion on the summit plateau. It was also nice to see that someone had done an excellent job of reshaping the previously squat cairn on the summit.
There is not much to say about the walk to Brown Haw except for the amount of heather burning that could be seen. One patch was being burnt close to my route. One (slight!) advantage Brown Haw has over its near neighbour Naughtberry Hill is the fact it has a cairn and a fence which at least gives its summit some basic features. Unfortunately the views weren’t that great and the descent to the road, while quick, was also lacking in interest.
The long walk back along the road, into the wind, was hard on the feet though there were some attractive and impressive gills leading down into the River Cover. I got a few nice pictures in the valley and at least I have covered the upper part of Coverdale.
All in all this was not a great walk, there are many places in the Dales I will look forward to revisiting (Buckden Pike included) but I cannot see me rushing out to Brown Haw in too much of a hurry.