18th March 2009

A sunny afternoon on Great Gable


Walk Overview
Time 12.30 to 17.00
Duration 4 hr 30 min
Distance 7.3 mile
Ascent 2900 ft
Walking with On my own
Wasdale Head - Burnthwaite - Sty Head - Great Gable - Windy Gap - Aaron Slack - Patterson's Fold - Styhead Tarn - Spouthead Gill - Lingmell Beck - Burnthwaite - Wasdale Head
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Car park, Wasdale Head

Wasdale can boast possession of the highest mountain, the deepest lake and the smallest church. What I'd like to do is add the busiest car park onto this list. During the summer months this is an incredibly popular place, particularly in June when the three peak walkers are out in force.

Unbelievable I know, but parking is actually free. This tiny hamlet also has a hotel / pub, a shop, a camp site and all the facilities you expect to find with it.


Route Map

At last; spring seems to have arrived.

Kirk Fell and Beck Head.

Walking along Moses Trod footpath to reach the bottom of Styhead Pass.

A superb alternative route up Great Gable can be seen here. Up the path through the bracken, along the scree path to Beck Head and then up the final steep climb to the summit. Anyway: enough about the route I didn't take.

So here's a picture of the route I did take.

Styhead Tarn.

Steep, but definitely enjoyable.

Looking back down to Styhead Tarn. Above the tarn is Seathwaite Fell, and further back is Glaramara and Allen Crags.

Despite it being such a nice day, from the summit of Great Gable I got a indication of just how hazy it was. Even though it seemed clear enough where I was, I'm sure there must have been people sitting on the top of Skiddaw or somewhere, who were thinking just how hazy is was over here.

Green Gable and its distinctive red scree path.

Rather than simply heading back the way I'd came or walking straight over the top of Great Gable to Beck Head, I decided to take an unusual route by dropping down to Windy Gap and then down the steep scree path on Aaron Slack.

Almost back at Styhead Tarn.

Before heading back down to Wasdale Head I took a short de-tour to Patterson's Fold where I got this picture of Styhead Gill.


Spout Head, Scew Gill and Great End.


Although it was quite a warm afternoon, I'm sure the water in Lingmell Beck must have been freezing. Far too cold to take a 'refreshing' dip in this deep pool.

Great End seen from the sheepfold next to Lingmell Beck.

And as seen as though I was trying my best to cross the beck, I thought I might as well take a photo of it.

Wasdale Head church.

David Hall -
Lake District Walks