|This is pretty much the circuit of minor peaks south of Swindale as described in Wainwright's Outlying Fells but with one important change. Wainwright describes a car parking space near the footbridge at Truss Gap farm. The public now have to park three quarters of a mile down the valley before the cattle grid (big sign to say no cars beyond this point) - so the walk is a mile and a half longer - my GPS gave a figure of 7.33 miles car to car.
Great Ladstones summit
Swindale is delightful. I had seen it once from Selside. This time, after crossing the footbridge, I turned left and followed the corpse road for a mile towards Shap. The point at which you leave the corpse Road and double back towards Rowantree Crag is not clear on the ground at all. It is clear on the map, however and my GPS duly "bleeped" to tell me to make the turn. It was about 10 feet out - which isn't bad I suppose!
Rowantree Crag is a great little pyramid in a sea of Cotton Grass. It has no Rowan tree - this may have died hundreds of years ago. In its place is a Holly Tree. Strangely, the next peak, Great Ladstones, DOES have a Rowan tree - scope for confusion for botanical walkers here! Easy walking over the oddly named Gambling Crag soon saw us approaching the highest point of the walk, Seat Robert. Unlike the other minor summits this has a big stone shelter and a big cairn - there is no doubting which is the main fell of the group.
After lunch we headed to High Weather How and Fewling Stones with great views up the lonely valley of Mosedale with Mosedale Cottage looking very lonely indeed.
Gouthercrag Gill is a delightful oasis of greenery and flowers after the bleak moorland above and the path descends the side of it with good views over the very vegetated Gouther Crag. Soon we were crossing the beck with less than a mile to the car.
Over seven miles! These outlying fells take a bit more effort than I expected! Enjoy the pics.