High Street and Friends

Start: Hartsop, Cumbria
End: Patterdale, Cumbria
Distance: Around 12 miles
Ascent: Around 4,500 feet
Time: 8 hours
Getting there: Nearest train stations are Windermere or Penrith, and there is a not very frequent bus that runs between the two stations stopping in Patterdale and Hartsop.
Food and loos: Patterdale has a pub, a hotel/bar and a lovely general store. I don’t know what facilities there are in Hartsop.
Terrain: Good paths throughout; only challenging section was getting down the slopes of The Knott in order the start the climb up Rest Dodd.
Difficulty: 3 – only difficulty is the length of the day.

The first major objective today was climbing Hight Street. This place always seemed fascinating to me: the site of an ancient Roman road and the venue for Victorian horseracing. I decided that the best way to make the ascent was the get the bus a short distance to Hartsop, and then climb up the slopes of The Knott. This is an easy walk, and on my way up I decided that I was bag the summit of The Knott before making my way along the Riggindale Straits and onto High Street.

Climbing High Street is not difficult, but it does require a good set of lungs and leg muscles. I had to stop for a few shorts breaks on the way up! From the top, the views are terrible! The fell top is so flat that you really don’t get any good views.

After making my way back down, with some excellent views of Haweswater, and getting a bit of shelter to eat my lunch, I made my way to Rampsgill Head. Again, this is very flat and I got a little confused about where the top actually was! I made the short walk to High Raise, which had a suitable brutal smashed rock summit. On the way back, I found the actually summit of Rampsgill Head – taking me to four fells climbed so far.

My intention was to be flexible today, and base the walk on energy, weather and time. I had the option of dropping back quickly into Hartsop on the path I had ascended, or walking along the Coast to Coast path back to Patterdale.

As I had plenty of time, I decided to climb Rest Dodd. This was certainly the most challenging section of the whole day. Walking down the slopes of The Knott to get to the valley floor was tough. It was a steep, pathless, descent. Long grass was obscuring large holes in the ground. I took it very slowly, especially after jarring my knee in one of the obscured holes. Then, as you seemingly often find in the Lake District when you are struggling, someone came running down the same slope I was on with not a care in the world. Once on the ascent, the climb was easy and Rest Dodd was claimed as my fifth fell of the day.

I started the walk back to Patterdale, the whole while wondering if I had the time or energy to climb another fell. After walking around Angle Tarn, I decided that I would bag Angletarn Pikes. This is an easy climb to the North Summit, and didn’t take me too far off the path to Patterdale. Angletarn Pikes is a bit unusual in that it has two summits – the South Summits seems to have better views (you can see Angle Tarn for a start) and a cairn, but that was a little out of the way.

This is a good walk, that can be extended or shortened on preference. I didn’t bother with Kidsty Pike because that was my first Wainwright last year! It was strange being back on the Coast to Coast paths. A big part of me would love to do that walk again, and I’m sure that someday I will, but right done there are lots of other places to see!