17th October 2009

Whin Rigg, Illgill Head and Eskdale Moor


Walk Overview
Time 09.15 to 14 30
Duration 5 hr 15 min
Distance 9.5 mile
Ascent 2400 ft
Walking with Andrew Leaney
Porterthwaite (Miterdale) - Miterdale Forest - Whin Rigg - Illgill Head - Burnmoor Tarn - Boat How - Brat's Hill - Blea Tarn - Blind Tarn - Siney Tarn - Porterthwaite (Miterdale)
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Car park, Porterthwaite, Miterdale

'Out of the way' sums up this car park perfectly. To get here you need to leave the village of Eskdale Green and follow a narrow road leading towards Miterdale. A road where you really don't want to meet anything coming in the opposite direction.

Parking is free and I shoud imagine you'll always manage to get a space here.


Route Map

Autumn in Miterdale Forest.
We had the first frost of the season this morning, and even though it wasn't a full blown icy morning kind of frost that you get in the depths of winter, the grass in the car park was white, slightly crisp and cold enough to remind us that winter is only just around the corner.

A close up of Nether Wasdale

The view down the ridge to Irton Pike, the Cumbrian coastal plane and the sea.

A little further on, and in the opposite direction we see Whin Rigg.

Woodhow Tarn.


A view from the fells to the sea.

Looking ahead to Illgill Head. In the background is Yewbarrow, Kirk Fell, Great Gable, Scafell and Slight Side.

The smaller of the two Whin Rigg tarns.

Whin Rigg.

Yewbarow (and Kirk Fell) reflected in Wast Water.

Illgill Head summit shelter.

Now that's what I call a skyline! Yewbarrow, Red Pike, Scoat Fell, Pillar, Kirk Fell and Great Gable.

Heading down to Burnmoor Tarn; which from here looks as though it's on a slope.

A steep, off path route from Illgill Head took us down to Burnmoor Tarn, where Kirk Fell, Great Gable and Lingmell gradually disappeared from view. Scafell on the other hand, remained in view almost for the remainder of the walk.

Burnmoor Tarn, seen here in front of Scafell.

Considering it was mid October, and that we'd had a frosty start to the day, it was surprisingly warm when we stopped next to Burnmoor Lodge for a bite to eat.

Suitably fed and watered, we left Burnmoor Lodge and headed across Eskdale Moor onto the rocky outcrop of Boat How.

Looking south from the top of Boat How towards Miterdale (the valley with the trees) and the west coast beyond.
The fell between the trees and the sea is Muncaster Fell.

And also looking back towards Burnmoor Tarn.

Boat How and Illgill Head.

One of the three stone circles found at the Brat's Hill area of the ridge.

The view over Eskdale to Harter Fell; the higher, most prominent fell in the picture.

The long view back across the moor.

Blea Tarn; one of three in the Lake District.

Miterdale and Illgill Head, seen from the point where we left the ridge and cut back down to the valley.

The River Mite and the bridge next to the car park at Porterthwaite.

David Hall -
Lake District Walks