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Friday, 11 September 2009

Kirk Fells

Walk Statistics
Walk Date - 11 September 2009
Walkers - Steve Smith
Accommodation - Wasdale Head Campsite
Start Point - Wasdale Head Campsite (GR NY 18711 08754)
Start Time - 12:15
Finish Point - Wasdale Head Campsite (GR NY 18711 08754)
Finish Time - 17:45
Duration - 5hrs 30mins
Average pace - 0.90mph
Distance Walked - 4.97miles
Height Ascended - 821.28metres

Peaks visited
Nuttalls (253)
Kirk Fell (56)
Kirk Fell East Top [Kirk Fell North Top] (57)
Hewitts (178)
Kirk Fell (40)
Kirk Fell East Top [Kirk Fell North Top] (41)
Marilyns (176)
Kirk Fell (17)
Wainwrights (214)
Kirk Fell (47)
Birketts (541)
Kirk Fell (80)
Kirk Fell East Top [Kirk Fell North Top] (81)

HuMPs (444)
Kirk Fell (25)

Route



Walk Description
Planned walk today is expected to complete the Mosedale Horseshoe including Kirk Fell(s), Pillar & other nearby tops.
The walk really started the day before in Ipswich at 5pm hoping to arrive in Wasdale late at night and set off first thing in the morning. Unfortunately car journey took longer than anticipated resulting in having to wild camp in the Wrynose Pass on the banks of Hell Gill.
Even then setting off early from here still required 1hrs 30mins further driving over Hardknott pass and further time to set up canmp at Wasdale Head campsite.
Even though start of walk was not until 12:15, I was hopefull I would be able to include Pillar and descend before Yewbarrow.
However I had not reckoned on steep climb up south ridge of Kirk Fell taking nearly 2½ to cover 1¼ miles and ascend 700m. Later finding out that this is considered to be one of the toughest climbs in the Lake District. I am sure there are others with harder parts, more scrambling and even some climbing, but not one with such a relentless climb without any flat walking except for the beginning, summit and approx 20m half way up.
Having reached the top the view of nearby fells including Great Gable, Pillar and Scafell was well worth the effort.
I could also see the next top, of Kirk Fell East Top beyond Kirk Fell Tarn. This was reached in more or  less planned time and again excellent views of surrounding fells.
Next top was Looking Steads (Pillar) which was set off for confidently along fence line, until reaching top of Kirk Fell Crags.
These proved to be difficult to descend which involved some scrambling and shuffling down on my backside.
By the time I reached the bottom I was at the top of the Black Sail Pass and only 500m from Looking Stead.
It was also 5pm and therefore decided to descend Black Sail Pass to Wasdale head leaving rest of Mosedale Horseshoe to complete tomorrow. Funnily enough it will also leave enough time to enjoy a pint and meal in the Wasdale Head Inn


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