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Southerndale, Skiddaw, Carl Side, Ullock Pike, Rabbit Warren Plantation, Cumbria.
[12.8 km]  Thu 02 May 2019

Lat/Long: 54.668176, -03.186135
OS Grid ref: NY 23597 30991
The weather forecast for Wednesday had been bad and Thursday was supposed to be cloudy with sunny spells, it turned out to be wrong. I arrived at the small parking area by the minor lane just north of highside to the northwest of Skiddaw. I was the only car there. I set off to walk east through the field and up to the gate under low cloud. At the gate the track is quite substantial and follows round the contour of the hill. I crossed the stream and started up into Southerndale following a minor track.

Heading up to Southerndale
Eventually it reduced to a path but was easy to follow and took a steady climb up the hillside. I could see ahead but higher up was thick cloud. I knew there was a path to the top of the valley but after that nothing is shown on the map. Higher up I could see the ruin of an old sheepfold. I headed for it and managed to find some shelter from the wind behind the corner wall.
Sheepfold in Southerdale

Skiddaw summit
I took the opportunity to stop here and have my sandwich lunch even though it was still relatively early. The view up the steep head of the valley seemed to be improving as the cloud lifted. Although steep I was mostly on grass and it was a relatively easy climb up to the ridge. Once there I met the main footpath heading up Skiddaw so I turn left here to follow it steeply up to the south ridge of Skiddaw. I still hadn't seen anyone so far. The silhouettes of the trig post and adjacent information plate pillar appeared out of the cloud.
Information plate
I didn't stop as it felt chilly in the wind even though the temperature was only 8degC. I walked across to the grassy area to the east of the summit to spend a brief moment remembering my friend Val (Val Robinson) who I used to work with many years ago. I joined her family here on 24 May 2008 as they scattered her ashes. She died on 4 Feb 2008. I headed back south through the mist to retrace my route.  However, I continued a bit further to join the main Allerdale Ramble route which took me back down a loose steep path to Carl Side tarn where I re-joined my route up.
On the descent

Derwentwater from Carl Side
I made a detour up to Carl Side summit which was a short climb above the tarn. I was lucky to get a brief view south across Derwentwater. I continued over the summit to follow Longside Edge and as I descended walkers were coming up through the mist.
Bassenthwaite Lake

Longside Edge

Rabbit Warren plantation
Along Longside Edge more people were coming up. The weather deteriorated and rain started so I needed to put my leggings on. I continued down then left at a path branch to descent to above Rabbit Warren plantation. I reached the busy road but was glad that a path existed through the woods following parallel and orth along the road. At Ravenstone Hotel I made a short detour up and down the hotel access road to give me a short break from walking along the main road.
A detour by Ravenstone Hotel
I still had over half a kilometre of road to negotiate which was rather uncomfortable with large fast vehicles approaching all the time. I was extremely relieved to reach High Side where I could turn right up the minor lane and back to my car.