Friday, December 26, 2014

Raven Crag and High Rigg

from the start, bit rainy but the car park meter wasn't working - every cloud....

Raven Crag from half way through the woods
A Boxing Day outing has become a bit of a tradition ever since, three years ago, Jonathan had his first fell walk up Dodd, then on to Carlside and Longside Edge.  He's come a long way since, dropping lots of weight and becoming a half-decent runner.  Good on you brother.

We had vaguely talked of "something epic" for this year's Boxing Day run but, as Christmas Day came to a close, I was feeling rather bloated and sent a text suggesting that we meet up a little bit later and don't go quite as far.  Jonathan, as ever, was happy to go with it.  

Jonathan on Raven Crag
The climb to Raven Crag from the car park at the bottom is straight forward navigation, run along the road a little bit and head up the signposted footpath.  We tracked on the map as it passed over two forest tracks and then found the branch off path, just before the track gets to the top forest track.  This is a rough track, slippery today.  It winds up through the forest.  There's always plenty of fallen trees around here, maybe because the ground is too rocky for a decent rooting or maybe because of the exposed area getting high winds.  There were one or two which had fallen over the path but nothing that couldn't be stepped over.

At the top, the cloud had come over obscuring Thirlmere and the Helvellyn range apart from fleeting glimpses in the momentary clear bits.

view down to the dam road through the fog

heading over to High Rigg
From the top, we went back to the forest track and then enjoyed a long easy downhill to pick up the footpath through Shoulthwaite Farm, over the road and across to begin the climb to High Rigg.  My map reading skills told me that if we climbed straight up the side of the wall, we would get to the top or thereabouts.

When we got there, it didn't look as though there was a track by the wall (there was because we came down that way) so we snaked up the side of the fell, did a bit of scrambling and eventually came out on the top of a nice runnable section which went over to the summit.  Some really nice running ground up here, we will need to come back to explore more.

Calfhow Pike sticking up over the Dodds from the little tarn on High Rigg

Dorking on High Rigg

From the summit, we went back the way we came initially and then followed the wall down to the footpath.  The run down the side of the wall was nice but would have been nicer with some grippier shoes (something like Mudclaws) on.  We followed the footpath back around the forest, then back down the road to the car.

Having completed the Wainwrights some time ago, I'm always remembering the last time I was at certain fells.  Here are a few pictures and links from previous visits to these fells:

I first went up Raven Crag in 2012.  It seemed like a good place to go in bad weather, I remember climbing over those trees.  Some pretty awful photos but this one stands out, at least it wasn't cloudy like today.

High Rigg was also first conquered in 2012 in an after work run from Castlerigg Stone Circle.  Very different conditions:

March 2012

December 2014