DATE                                           12.07.11

DISTANCE                                 ABOUT 9.0 MILES

WEATHER                                  OVERCAST BUT DRY 



Longlands in the Northern fells.

After receiving some good info about this area and even better still a suggested walking route from John (Brandywell) I just had to go and have a wander.

Now as ive stated in the past I am always very wary about going to new areas for the first time simply because there are certain types of terrain that make it almost impossible for me to walk on , however after looking at a few photos I was almost certain that I would be alright in these hills.

The plan for this walk was to park up in a little roadside lay-by near Longlands, head up along the edge of Longlands fell on what I believe might be a section of the Cumbria way then head straight up Longlands fell then down and up to Lowthwaite Fell, from there still on the grassy path up to Great sca fell then finally up to the summit of Knott which was the highest that I was going today.

It was at this point I made the rather bad decision to ignore the route that John has so kindly given me and head off to do my own thing. Big mistake. After a quick look at the map I decided to head down Via Burn Tod where according to my os map there was a footpath waiting for me, to start with things where going well, then about a third of the way down this nice grassy hill decided to get sneaky and get steeper, now one thing I donít like is steepness, still I was committed (or I need committing not sure which) and down I went one step at a time , going into my lets just take it one step at a time mode (which is really S*it I buggered it up again talk)

After three lifetimes I eventually got to the bottom and sure enough picked up a grassy footpath / sheep trail that followed what could be the Hause gill down. Now itís at this point I really knew what a monumental cock up I had made, this Gully (not really sure if thatís the correct name for it) was one huge nightmare for me, sloping ground lots of lose scree , lots of clambering , hard rocks sticking up everywhere , (you know the sort the oneís  that hurt when you fall on them ) small uneven footholds , basically I couldnít think of a worse place to be , and if any amputees ever read this I always believe in pushing ones boundaries but donít come here to push them .unless

A)     You want to really fall and hurt yourself

B)     You are brain dead

C)     you have decided to give up on living

Of course if you are well insured and a family member brings you this way, I would be a bit concerned. Anyway you have been warned.

All you two legersí will have no trouble so please just ignore my last few lines.

After another three lifetimes, two gallons of nervous sweat, about six mental breakdowns, several promises that I will always stick to the route and huge amounts of adrenaline coursing through my system I actually found myself enjoying this. (Donít worry I have booked into the local Looney bin to get my head sorted out) again something seems to kick in and I went into auto pilot.

Strange how the body always seems to produce the goods to get you out of trouble isnít it?

Eventually I walked out onto a very pleasant path out of this gully, and had to sit down, by this time my body was screaming for fluids and something to replace all the nervous energy that I had used, a quick rummage in the rucksack produced all sorts of goodies which I quickly threw down my neck before any of the local sheep muscled in.

Would you believe at this point I started feeling guilty, I mean John had done a map for me and I have deliberately   gone off course, so a quick look at the o/s map again and a new course was set, up the side and onto the summit of Great Cock up , his route called for me to go down little Cock up but you know how it is once you been on great cock up who want to go on a little cock up , so instead I headed towards Trusmadoor  which was a lovely mini type valley , the only problem was it was a bit of a steep but short decent down , but after my adventures earlier on I could do anything.

Once down it was a simple case of following the footpath all the way back to Longlands which was a pure joy to walk on.

Other stuff about the walk, I havenít mentioned the views thatís because they are fantastic, from the view out over the Solway Firth to the back of Skiddaw and Blencathra.

Iíve read somewhere that this range of hills are mostly ignored in favour of the bigger one further across , well I feel privileged to have walked among them . There is a certain peacefulness to them.

Thank you John (Brandwell)

As per norm some photos enjoy:-

First one taken at the start where I parked up the car.

The cairn on top of Longlands fell looking towards over water.

My route ahead towards Lowthwait fell.

On top of Lowthwait fell.

Some general views as I hobble along.

Great Sca fell top?.

And again (I think).

Knott fell cairn.

My own way down (looks easy at this stage).

Looking back up, itís steeper than it looks.

This is where I know I am in for a rough time.

Further down Burnt Tod.

Looking back up.

Breathing space.

Just keeps getting better.

Just when I think it canít get any worse this.

Yeah Iím out.

Skiddaw Iím impressed.


Looking back at my route.

Half way up Great Cock up looking back.

Shooting stell on Great Cock up.

General view as I hobble along.

On the top looking across towards Skiddaw.

Looking out towards the coast.

Another cairn (or Iím losing the plot!.)

My way ahead.

Gulp! Going down.

Did I ever tell you how much I hate this type of ground?

Still heading down looking up the valley.

Now in what I will call the mini valley Trusmadoor.

Peering up at the sheep.

On my way out.

Leg shot.

Looking back.

The way ahead.

Baby crossing.

Last look back I really am sorry to finish this walk.

Thank you.