8th February 2009

Red Screes. Middle Dodd, Little Hart Crag and Scandale


Walk Overview
Time 08.45 to 14.30
Duration 5 hr 45 min
Distance 9.5 mile
Ascent 2900 ft
Walking with Andrew Leaney
Ambleside - Kirkstone Road - Snarker Pike - Red Screes - Middle Dodd - Scandale Pass - Little Hart Crag - Scandale Tarn - Scandale Pass - Scandale - High Sweden Bridge - Ambleside
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Car park, Ambleside

Ambleside offers quite a few different car parks, all of which are very close to the main town centre. I should offer a word of caution though; don't forget to bring plenty of money to buy a parking ticket.


Route Map

Today's outing took us to Ambleside in search of some snow and ice. There were a few reasons for choosing this area today:-
The first one was the weather forecast, which was for a band of bad weather to move in from the west by mid afternoon; so we opted for an early start in the east.
If the bad weather had turned up early and was bad as forecast, this route offers a few possibilities to get off the fells quickly.
Given the chaos the snow had caused in other parts of the country, another reason for setting out from Ambleside was the fact that it is next to a main road. Even locals need to get home after a walk on the fells.

A weak sun trying and failing to break through the clouds behind Wansfell Pike.

Rydal Water with a snow covered Bowfell, the Langdale Pikes and Pavey Ark behind.

Looking back down the ridge in a rather subdued light.
Without a breath of wind to cool things down it was surprisingly warm. This was not the case at the summit !

A wintry view into Scandale; the return leg of our walk.


Back down the ridge things were looking decidedly dull and gloomy, , , ,

In the opposite direction however, things were a little brighter.

A close up of the Kirkstone Inn.

And not so close up.

A final picture looking back down the ridge.
Notice the two stretches of water on the left half of the photo. Both are in fact the same lake; Windermere. It's only from high up that you fully appreciate the size of the lake.

Red Screes summit, with the tarn frozen solid.
Conditions were totally different up here. In a matter of a couple of minutes the temperature had plummeted, and the frozen snow we'd been walking on gave way to pure ice. After carefully making our way across to the trig point we (quickly) put on some extra layers, and our crampons, which were essential at this point, particularly as we new what the fellside is like between here and Middle Dodd.

That's Middle Dodd below us.

Heading down to Middle Dodd.
All the nice fluffy snow people assume they're looking at from the valleys is far from fluffy; the whole lot was frozen solid.

Looking back up to Red Screes.

Middle Dodd.

From Middle Dodd we back tracked to the corner of the wall before traversing the fellside to join up with the normal path from Red Screes to the top of Scandale Pass. This picture was taken as we began to drop down to Scandale Pass.

Little Hart Crag summit, looking across to Dove Crag and High Bakestones.

Scandale. It doesn't look very long from here, but when you walk through the valley it just seems to go on, and on, and on, , ,

Red Screes seen from the craggy section on Little Hart Crag.

Scandale Tarn, complete with its own personal snow drift.

And talking of snow drifts.

The view back up Scandale Pass.

And in the opposite direction, the view through Scandale itself; perhaps looking a bit grim today, but this really is a lovely valley.

Looking back again.

High Sweden Bridge.

Well, here comes the weather. The forecast turned out to be right after all.



David Hall -
Lake District Walks