Returning down Langdale
Returning down Langdale, Howgill Fells

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Route No. 105 - Tuesday 25 May 2004
Middleton, Simon's Seat, Langdale - 16km
Howgill Fells . . .

Map: OS OL19 Howgill Fells and Upper Eden Valley at 1:25000

Ordnance Survey route map on the Landranger series map base

 


Our parking spot off the A685
Our parking spot off the A685

We set off at about 10.45am on the track passed Archer Hill farm. We made our way across some rough marshy country to map ref. NY 650026 where there is a good path down the steep valley side into Langdale.

It was a fine morning and there's plenty of daylight at this time of year so we drove across the A66 and turned off through Kirkby Stephen to the Howgill Fells. One of my favourite walking areas. We parked on one of the little lanes off the A685 at the northern edge of the fells (map ref. NY 659046).

Our route across some rough country to the edge of Langdale
Our route across some rough country to the edge of Langdale watched by Howgill Rough Fell sheep

Our first view across Langdale
Our first view across Langdale

We stopped here for a few minutes for a drink and to admire the view before continuing for another 1.5km to the top of Simon's Seat at map ref. SD660999.

We crossed the river and followed the quad-bike track on to the ridge of Middleton and then made the long steep climb along the ridge to the trig point at map ref. NY 652012.

Lady's Slipper in the marsh grass
Lady's Slipper in the marsh grass

Trig point at the top of Middleton
Trig point at the top of Middleton

From here we followed a narrow precarious path that contours round the steep valley side for about 1.5km to another col below Bush Howe at map ref. SD 656983. From here there is a reasonable route following the stream down into the head of the valley.

We stopped here for our lunch with that amazing panorama of the Lake District hills and the North Pennines and the Howgill Fells all around us. After lunch we dropped down to a little col beside Simon's Seat at map ref. SD 658996.

Following the stream down from the col below Bush Howe towards Simon's Seat
Following the stream down from the col below Bush Howe towards Simon's Seat

Returning down Langdale
Returning down Langdale

A dung beetle going about its business
A dung beetle going about its business

The route took us about five and a half hours including our stops. We has planned to stop in Kirkby Stephen for our traditional cup of tea and a toasted teacake but we were too late. All the tea shops seem to shut at about half past four.

The valley is a branch of the head of Langdale and we followed it for about 5km back to the point where we had crossed the river this morning. From there we retraced our route up the valley side and back to the car. The route was about 16km over some steep rough country where a good map and compass (and the skill to use them) are essential.

Returning down Langdale
Returning down Langdale

Looking back up Langdale on our return
Looking back up Langdale on our return