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Clouds touching Blencathra on the right and the Skidaw range on the left seen from Cat Bells
Clouds touching Blencathra on the right and the Skidaw range on the left seen from Cat Bells

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Library Route No. 930428
Scales(A66), Scales Fell, Blencathra circuit - 11km
English Lake District . . .

Map: OS Explorer OL5 The English Lakes North-Eastern area at 1:25000

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The approximate route is shown by a blue line.
Use your mouse to drag the map to the area of interest and
zoom in/out using the controls on the left hand side of the map.

Please use my map to find the route on your own large scale walking map such as the OS Explorer series at 1:25000.
In this case it's the OS Explorer OL5 The English Lakes North-Eastern at 1:25000
If you have time if you do this walk please let me know how you get on.
That would be very helpful to me to keep my information accurate and up to date.
Please note that I provide this free service to you as a fellow walker on the understanding that you walk
the route entirely at your own risk and that the information is not used for any commercial purpose.

Library Route No. 930428
Scales(A66), Scales Fell, Blencathra circuit - 11km
Lake District . . .

Map: OS Explorer OL5 The English Lakes North-Eastern area at 1:25000

General Directions (see markers on the route map)

1.) There is a layby at Scales on the A66 opposite the White Horse Inn at map ref. NY343268 to start and finish this circular route. (There's also a bunkhouse in the old stables at the pub) From the layby walk south west along the main road for about 300m and then turn right off the road on to a footpath around the edge of a small disused quarry directly on to open access land above the hamlet of Scales. The path follows the intake wall for about 600m.

2.) After about 600m the path starts to climb away from the wall and after another 100m there is a path off to the left that zig-zags its way up the steep slope of Scales Fell. (Note: If you miss the turn and continue straight on the path leads to the notorious and hazzardous crossing of Sharp Edge)

3.) About 1km from the turn on to this path, it reaches the ridge of Scales Fell with a steep drop of about 200m to the beck called the River Glenderamackin to the north east and an even steeper drop to Scaley Beck to the south west with the ridge of Doddick Fell beyond. Continue along the ridge as it bends round to the left towards the top of Blencathra. Now below the path is Scales Tarn with the formidable Sharp Edge beyond. There remains the final short steep climb to the summit of Blencathra at map ref. NY343277. The shape of this hill is amazing, with its six ridges all leading to the summit ridge.

4.) From the summit cairn begin the descent by following the path along the ridge heading south west for about 1.5km to Knowe Crags. From here the descent becomes much steeper. Continue for another 1km to map ref.NY307260 where the route turns left on to a path heading south east.

5.) Follow the path heading south east and still descending steeply to the intake wall at a block of walled fields at map ref. NY313259. Continue along the bottom edge of these fields along a permissive path for about 250m to cross a stream called Blease Gill.

6.) From Blease Gill leave the open access land and follow the public footpath for about 1km to a stream called Gate Gill. Cross the stream to return to the open access land and continue along a path following the intake wall for about 1.6km back to join the outward route near Scales at map ref. NY340268. Turn right to follow the path back to the A66 and walk along the road back to the starting point in the layby opposite the pub.

Note: the intake wall is the boundary between the enclosed farmland and the open unfenced fells.

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