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Snow on Loughrigg Fell

February 16, 2013

I have always had a fondness for Loughrigg Fell. Not because it is particularly high or dramatic, but because it is one of the best all-round viewpoints in the Lake District. I have been up there a number of times. Not just to the summit from Grasmere, as many do, but all over its huge mass, and from all directions.ImageLangdales from Loughrigg

As we set out from Rydal, the other day, the lower slopes of the Grasmere fells were clear of snow, but the tops had a goodly covering. It was one of those crisp winter days that hardens the mud and makes fellwalking very enjoyable. There were a few people about, making the most of a fine clear day.

We walked up to the Big Cave, which I always like to see, then out on to Loughrigg Terrace, with its lovely views over Grasmere. The ground was hard under frost, but no snow at that height. It was quite warm, free of the colder winds that had swept snow across the Lakes the week before.

We took the path to the summit from above Red Bank. Still clear of snow for the first hundred feet, though some of the ice on the rocky path was a trifle perilous. Then, at last, up into the white stuff, all the way to the top.

The views were sensational, back over Grasmere. Seat Sandal as white as a Christmas Cake. The summits of the Fairfield Horsehoe looking probably more dramatic than I have ever seen them. The Langdale Pikes positively Alpine, and the great bulk of Wetherlam almost Himalayan. Windermere looked grey and mysterious as it stretched out before us.

There were a few people at the summit, all seeming to enjoy their winter ascent.

We descended back to Rydal through the sprawling moorland that makes up the southern heights of Loughrigg – to often missed by those who just go up and down this fell from Grasmere. It is an area worth exploring. We soon left the snow behind, but the groves of Juniper made up for that.

If you have never walked a Lakeland fell then try Loughrigg first. A hill for all seasons!

One Comment leave one →
  1. February 16, 2013 6:56 pm

    Strangely enough I hated Loughrigg (and Silver How to Blea Rigg for that matter) as did Richard. I think it was just too complicated and too many little summits for me and we found it hard to find a good route down to Ambleside (we’d gone up from the terrace route which we did like). I think we ended up coming down through someone’s large garden with rhododendron bushes everywhere so they didn’t see us. We loved the cave though and walking along the lakeshore of Rydal. It’s funny how tastes vary isn’t it – but I suppose it’s a good thing really otherwise we’d all cluster round the same fells 🙂

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