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Mungrisdale, Raven Crag, Bowscale Fell, Bannerdale Crags, White Horse Bent, Souther Fell, Cumbria.
[11.6 km]  Tue 08 Sep 2020

 
OS Grid ref: NY 36488 30013
Lat/Long: 54.661178, -02.986081

The drive north along the M6 motorway was through mist and drizzle. I thought it was about to clear as I drove over Shap summit and saw a small area of blue sky. My optimism was soon dashed. I reached Mungrisdale and decided to park on the roadside parking area before the Village Hall. As I set off walking mine was the only car there. I headed north along the lane to the Village Hall and left the road to turn right up a path by the old limekiln.

The old limekiln.

Limekiln illustration.
 

 View of Bannerdale from Raven Crag.
 
Across a field of cows I returned to the road and on to a left turn onto a minor track. It soon reached a dilapidated wooden gate where I found it easier to step over the adjacent wire fence. I wasnít heading up the track but up a steep path up Raven Crag Ridge. It was steep and muddy at first but thankfully soon climbed above the gorse onto open fell. The gradient eventually eased but I was then in cloud and had no views, the wind also increased and I was getting wet in the mist. I then had to put on my full waterproofs.
Heading up Raven Crag.
The walk towards Bowscale Fell must be very impressive in good weather but I couldnít see anything. I descended a short way to the north to find shelter for an early lunch and was briefly treated to a view down into the bowl of Bowscale Tarn. I rejoined the ridge path and the summit cairn of Bowscale Fell appeared through the mist. I was now heading south and reached the very wet ground where I had to make a few detours to find the better path along the edge of Bannerdale Crags.
Bowscale Tarn.

 Bannerdale Crags cairn in the mist.
 

 Walkers in the distance.
The mist was a shame as I was hoping to be able to look down to the crags below to see if I could see any evidence of the abandoned mine workings. At the summit cairn I headed south then SE to start the descent of White Horse Bent. I've descended this way before and followed the route shown on OpenStreetMap but found no evidence of a path on the ground. However, I could see a narrow path through the heather and followed it. It drifted away from the decent I needed but a branch soon took me back. I decided to keep to it and found it continued all the way down to the wooden footbridge across the River Glenderamackin. There is no path shown on the OS maps but it is shown in Wainwrights Northern Fells book. I crossed the bridge and headed up to the east and on towards Souther Fell. For a while Iíd descended below the cloud and could see down the valley but climbing Souther Fell I was soon back in cloud.

 Heading over Souther Fell.
For the first time on this walk I began to see people out walking. I was here last week but didnít plan to reverse that route. Along the summit is another way off the mountain by a diagonal path on the east side of the fell. I was soon on the well engineered track which is mostly straight and of a steady gradient. Presumably it was originally for gaining the easiest access to the fell top.

 Walkers coming up Souther Fell.

 View from the Souther Fell descent.
Part way down I dropped below the cloud level and was treated to some nice views of the lower hills to the east. I passed several people on their way up. At the road I continued north and had a quick look in the Community Garden before crossing the footbridge by the Village Hall. Returning to my car the road side was full of cars.

Community Garden.

Footbridge to the Village Hall.
 
   
 
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