19th April 2009

Hart Side and Stybarrow Dodd from Dockray


Walk Overview
Time 08.30 to 13.45
Duration 5 hr 15 min
Distance 9.6 mile
Ascent 2590 ft
Walking with On my own
Dockray - Swineside Knott - Taylor Fold - Birkett Fell - Hart Side - Stybarrow Dodd - Middle Tongue - Deepdale - Randerside Fold - Dowthwaitehead Moss - High Brow - High Row - Dockray
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Parking spaces, Dockray

There is only room for 4 or 5 cars here. Despite that, I've always been fortunate enough to get parked here. I'm not sure where most people head when they park here, but I have to admit, on every occasion I've headed straight across the road and onto the fell in the Watermillock Common area.

Parking is free.


Route Map

Dockray, taken from my route onto Watermillock Common; about five minutes after setting out.

This was one of those incredible fellwalking wow moments you get when you see something totally unexpected. There wasn't a single cloud in the sky on the drive through, so the last thing I expected to see was a cloud inversion over Ullswater. The pictures aren't as clear as I'd have liked, but they still help to show what the conditions were like.

Looking in the opposite direction I could see the cloud was already beginning to break up. My timing couldn't have been better as it turned out. 15 minutes later and I'd have missed it.

What a brilliant section of path this is along the Ullswater side of Watermillock Common.

I took this picture of Birkett Fell on the way back from a short de-tour to photograph the sheepfold found next to Little Aira Beck.

Ullswater, now free from its covering of cloud. Much to the delight of everyone in the valley I'm sure.

Glencoyne Head with Catstye Cam, Helvellyn, Helvellyn Lower Man and White Side behind.

A very steep, but very easy to follow route up to Birkett Fell.

Just in case you haven't read the plaque, I took this picture from Birkett Fell. In the background you have Stybarrow Dodd, Hart Side and Great Dodd.

Hart Side summit.

Stybarrow Dodd still hanging onto the last specks winter snow. I can't see it lasting much longer if this weather continues.

And from the same place, looking back to Hart Side. The valley on the left of the picture is the one I walked through later in the walk.

Stybarrow Dodd summit.

The view down Middle Tongue; a very pleasant route off Stybarrow Dodd. I should point out however, if we'd recently had a spell of prolonged rain, I would have thought twice about heading into Deepdale.

Crossing Browndale Beck.

Deepdale. Perhaps they should have named it flatdale or shallowdale. Whatever its name, this isn't somewhere I'd like to walk in poor visibility and heavy rain.

Randerside Fold, Deepdale and Middle Tongue leading up to Stybarrow Dodd.


It's a pity about the build up of cloud, but I suppose you can't have everything.

Great Mell Fell, Little Mell Fell and Gowbarrow Fell all seen from High Brow.

Walking down the road between High Row and Dockray. From this angle, Gowbarrow Fell looks like it could be climbed from the bottom of the road, which of course it can't.

Back in Dockray and apart from the lady I saw walking her dog when I first set out, this was where I met the first people all day; less than five minutes from the end of the walk. Hardly surprising when you see where I'd been I suppose. Although to make me feel even more pleased with myself, the guy I was talking to outside one of the houses said he'd drove down to Ullswater but came straight back home because he couldn't get parked, and even if he had, you couldn't move for people.

David Hall -
Lake District Walks