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Walking in the Howgill Fells

March 4, 2013

Walking in the Howgill Fells

Summit Cair on Crook

Summit Cairn on Crook

Yet another beautiful morning of clear blue sky and wonderful light. A few patches of snow clinging to the higher fells, as we set out from Sedbergh for a walk on the southern fringes of the Howgill Fells. Sedbergh is a book town, with one enormous antiquarian bookshop and several others. A place to browse, seeking out all of those long-lost authors you had always wanted to read or re-read. We saved the browsing for later.Howgills Crook and Winder 009

Climbing  up Joss Lane, we made up way up the course of the Settlebeck Gill, a delightful little beck with a picturesque though miniature waterfall. Then up the western slopes of Crook. For much of the way up there are splendid views over the little grey town. Crook has the largest summit cairn of any of the Howgills, and quite magnificent views. It feels a lot higher than the just over 1500 feet it actually is. Despite the sun, it was cold, as a gentle breeze swept in over higher, snowier fells.

We followed the ridge round to Winder (1551 feet), that long hill that so dominates the town of Sedbergh. As Wainwright says, in his charming little book on the Howgills, you pronounce it like Eliza Doolittle might have, a take on the Cockney ‘Window’; before she met Professor Higgins in Shaw’s Pygmalion.

Winder is one of the best viewpoints on this side of the Howgills, offering views into the Lakes and into Yorkshire. We stood for a few minutes on the summit, appreciating the golden day.

The Howgills are still very quiet compared to the better known fells of the Lake District, the paths grassy and not eroded in the way some of the Lakeland fells are. If you haven’t explored them, I commend them to you. And the bookshops far below.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. March 4, 2013 11:46 pm

    I never know which is which between Knock & Winder – I think I descended between them once but don’t think I’ve ever actually been on either of them. I love the Howgills but rarely get there. I hope I can get there more often when I’ve finished my Munroing…

  2. March 5, 2013 6:43 am

    Wonderful Howgills, soon to be entirely in the national park I hope!

  3. March 5, 2013 7:48 am

    A curse on the county council for opposing the national park extensions

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