North of Skiddaw Forest
FIVE Wainwright circular walk: Great Cockup, Meal Fell, Great Sca Fell, Knott, Great Calva.
Time: 4 hours
Parking: limited roadside spaces on the minor road to Orthwaite (Grid Ref: NY253 338).
|The hills from Great Cockup to Knott, as seen from Bakestall|
In the middle of the Northern Fells lies the rather desolate depression of 'Skiddaw Forest'. However, it is almost entirely without trees, instead being mainly heather. To its north, a group of grassy hills add a number of generally unremarkable fells to the pages of Wainwright's Walking Guide to the Northern Fells.
As Wainwright put it, "the whole of these uplands is a vast sheep pasture ... although relatively unexciting in scenic quality ... they are unspoilt, serene and restful". So, for a quiet walk on gentle slopes, with a few surprises along the way, try the circular route outlined below.
|Looking across Trusmadoor towards Meal Fell|
|The Scottish hills seen through the cleft of Trusmadoor|
|Looking south over 'Skiddaw Forest' towards Dunmail Raise|
|Looking east towards Bowscale Fell and the distant Pennines|
|Bakestall on the way back along the old bridleway|
Worth knowing: In the section on Great Calva, Wainwright's Guide to the Northern fells points out that this fell is uniquely placed at the north end of a geological fault running south through the heart of Lakeland. The rift goes through St.John's in the Vale, Thirlmere and Dunmail Raise. It then continues through the Vale of Grasmere and right along Windermere.