The Northern Fells
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Lakeland Fellranger guidebook covering 23 summits in the Northern Fells of the Lake District, with a wide range of ascents. This region is home to the popular fells of Blencathra and Skiddaw, plus lesser-known fells such as Caldbeck and Uldale in this northern area. With clear Harvey map extracts and the author's original topos and panoramas.
SeasonsIn the main these are fells for all seasons. However Blencathra's ridges are exposed and unforgiving to timid and unwary explorers in windy, wet or icy conditions.
CentresCaldbeck, Uldale, Ireby, Bassenthwaite, Keswick, Threlkeld, Mungrisdale and Hesket Newmarket.
DifficultyStraightforward, short ascents, often not on clear paths, to be used as a basis for readers' own circuits. Navigational skills needed but no specialist equipment. Any scrambling is easy and non-scrambling options are always provided.
Must SeeBlencathra; Skiddaw; Caldbeck and Uldale Fells; Dash Falls, Trusmadoor and Carrock Fell, Great Cockup and Dodd. Quiet hills of peace and introspection for all the lack of lakes for reflection.
The Northern Fells of the Lake District roll north from Keswick in bold sweeps of hillside. They offer a taste of classic fellwalking to those who explore beyond the clutch of the busier peaks. 23 fells are described in this guide, with route variations ensuring that there's potential for walkers of any and all abilities, so the Northern Fells may be enjoyed to their full.
What sort of walking awaits? Broad sweeps of heather-clad fells and an expanse of grass, rock and sky make it the home of a peace and remoteness for ramblers. Summits of high fellwalking ambition such as Skiddaw and Blencathra watch over Keswick, before sprawling north into deep valley basins and moor-like hilltops of Brae Fell, Great Calva, Great Cockup and Knott.
The Northern Fells is part of the eight-volume Lakeland Fellranger series by Mark Richards. Fellrangers mix the perfect balance of inspiration and information as they provide a comprehensive guide to the fells of the English Lake District. In every book, a dedicated chapter covers each fell, with a variety of routes, both time-honoured and undiscovered depicted on Harvey maps. The author's own topos and summit panoramas, not to mention breathtaking photography, enhance the reader's journey, and make sure that any trip to the Northern Fells with a Fellranger in hand is one to remember.
- A waterproof PVC cover and ribbon bookmark make this Lakeland Fellranger guide a handy companion in the hills.
- Every route is illustrated with HARVEY maps, colour photographs, fellscape diagrams and panorama guides.
- A walk and a fell for everyone - with alternative routes, height distance and timing information to tailor-make your ranging.
- Mark up your fells after a day's walk in the fell checklist to chronicle your adventures in the Lakes
The Northern Fells is just one guide of the eight-part Lakeland Fellranger series, covering a total of 227 fells. Where will you go next? To explore the Lakeland fells in full, check out the other guides on Cicerone's website: The North-Western Fells, The Mid-Western Fells, The Western Fells, The Central Fells, The Southern Fells, The Near Eastern Fells and The Far Eastern Fells.
From Fireside to Fellside
Fix the Fells
1 Bakestall (673m/2208ft)
2 Bannerdale Crags (683m/2241ft)
3 Binsey (447m/1467ft)
4 Blencathra (868m/2848ft)
5 Bowscale Fell (702m/2303ft)
6 Brae Fell (586m/1923ft)
7 Carl Side (746m/2448ft)
8 Carrock Fell (662m/2172ft)
9 Dodd (502m/1647ft)
10 Great Calva (690m/2264ft)
11 Great Cockup (526m/1726ft)
12 Great Sca Fell (651m/2136ft)
13 High Pike (658m/2159ft)
14 Knott (710m/2329ft)
15 Latrigg (368m/1207ft)
16 Longlands Fell (483m/1585ft)
17 Long Side (734m/2408ft)
18 Lonscale Fell (715m/2346ft)
19 Meal Fell (550m/1804ft)
20 Skiddaw (931m/3054ft)
21 Skiddaw Little Man (865m/2838ft)
22 Souther Fell (522m/1713ft)
23 Ullock Pike (690m/2264ft)
For ease of reference the 23 fell chapters are arranged in alphabetical order. Each chapter begins with a customised HARVEY map that illustrates the routes of ascent described in the guide, and shows ridge connections to neighbouring fells to assist in the planning of extended walks. The corresponding text describes routes up the fell from given valley starting points, identified on the map by a number (shown in a blue box). The starting points are listed in the ‘Starting Points’ table on page 16, and are also given in blue (in brackets) after the ascent route headings in the walks. In many instances there is also a diagram that shows the routes from a given perspective to assist visualisation.
The primary routes to the summit are described, with optional variations given, up to their natural point of connection with the more common route. Where a route follows a defined path this is shown on the map and diagram in red dashes, and where the recommended route follows an intermittent path (or there is no path on the ground at all) this is shown in green dashes. Where a route follows a road it is not picked out by dashed lines. Being aware of the safest lines of descent is important, and advice is given on these for nearly all fells. There are far more paths on the fells than are shown on a conventional HARVEY map, and for clarity this guide only shows the paths and routes that are described here.
As a good guide should also be a revelation, a full panorama is provided for each fell summit or better nearby viewpoint. This names the principal fells and picks out key features in their midst, with some more distant features beyond the national park to intrigue. When undertaking the walks in the guide, you are advised to take a map and compass with you (and know how to use them). The map can enhance your day by showing additional landscape features and setting your walk in its wider context, as well as being useful for your own safety. And remember that representation of a route in this guide, in whatever form, does not infer safe passage for all, at any time. The onus is on each individual to weigh up their own capabilities and the prevailing conditions. In fellwalking, as in any mountain travel, knowing when to retreat is often the greater part of valour. The author has taken care to follow time-honoured routes, and kept within bounds of access, yet cannot guarantee rights of way in all cases.
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Latrigg - route 5
(p168) the first stages are "a gloomy coniferous tunnel." A note to be added on p171 under Safe Descents that this route can be very difficult because of the poor light.
Anyone unfamiliar with the fells that lie behind Blencathra and Skiddaw should get hold of this rucksack reference book and have their eyes opened.
It was a wilderness that I only discovered three years ago and I have now had the pleasure of visiting all the 23 tops featured in this guide.
As with all the other books in the Fellranger series, Mark Richards brings the place alive with his descriptions and stunning colour photographs.
Had this book been out when I was discovering the area it would have been the first item to have been popped in my rucksack.
Westmorland Gazette 18 October 2012
'It’s another lavishly illustrated, colourful softback guide packed with information on routes up the likes of Bannerdale Crags, Binsey, Latrigg and Ullock Pike, not to mention Skiddaw and Blencathra. Since each fell is dissected path by path, there are routes for all ages and abilities – each lovingly and carefully described.'
Walkmag.co.uk, February 2013
We are absolutely delighted with the books. We are very keen walkers and over the years have been up most of the peaks in the Northern Lakes but we can now see from our new books that there are lots of alternative routes that we are looking forward to trying.
Jeanette Colquhoun May 2013
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In 1980 Mark Richards began his three-part guide to the Peak District for Cicerone Press, and in 1987, with Chris Wright, wrote a guide to walking around the former county of Westmorland. He now lives in Cumbria and, after 14 years' dedicated research, has completed his series of Lakeland Fellranger guides covering the entire region. He has also written a guide to Hadrian's Wall.View Articles and Books by Mark Richards