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Monday, 2 November 2009

Birks Fell and Horsehead

buckden and buckden pike Buckden and Buckden Pike

This was the second walk in the Yorkshire Dales 2000 foot tops project.

Birks Fell is the highest part of a long ridge that runs from Knipe Scar (thats right, worra cracking place!) near Kettlewell – to Cosh Knott , some mnhmmnnnn miles (can’t be arsed to measure it) – bit its a long ridge anyway.

Birks Fell is 2001 feet above sea level. It was ever thus, except that fairly recently, the Ordnance Survey published a map saying that the top was 609 metres. This is less than 2000 feet…..a bit. And then somebody else said that the highest part of the ridge was somewhere else. A survey reinstated Birks Fell as a 2000 footer and the top of the ridge, so let there be no further dissention or even discussion about it. Its probably important.

birks fell tarn Birks Fell Tarn

I was supposed to go up here on Sunday, but a fierce gale with lots of rain got in the way and me and superdawg turned up at the Buckden car park a bit late (11:00 am) this morning.

It appears that all of the leaves have now left their trees and it is now winter. It was quite cold (7.5 degrees according to the car thermometer – and just 3.5 degrees at the top of Kidstones Pass on the way home. And the wind-chill in the mornin g was nithering to say the least, although it calmed down a bit in the afternoon. UpperWharfedale seems to be having a rest. There’s very few people about, the pub at Hubberholme was closed, and there were only one or two cottages in Buckden with lights on in the evening.

birks fell summit cairn Birks fell Summit Cairn

The walk went well enough – it was a bit windy, and there were showers, and the wind chill was perishing… but we got to the top without much in the way of excitement. The summit cairn appears to be a newish one and is in the top of what appears to be a man-made lump of the local peat. No wonder its the highest point – some bugger’s been building up the top.

We lunched. I ate willie cake (very nice) and PEK and tomato butties, Bruno dribbled a bit – and we scooted off. The walking is very easy if you stay next to the wall – its level and mainly dry – it does get very boggy in a few limited spots – but we were soon loping off over the moors and bagging the very fine top of Horsehead – fine for its view of Penyghent and Ingleborough.

horsehead trig and dog Horsehead and Dog Sitting As Instructed

Soon, we dropped down to Langstrothdale, where is went a bit dark and started chucking it down.

river wharfe langstrothdale River Wharfe Langstrothdale

We followed the Dales Way back to Hubberholme, where the pub was shut, and took the road back to Buckden.

This is a good old bash along the tops – easy walking, easy navigation, easy women.

No, not the easy women , actually.

13 miles and 1700 feet of climbing.

Camera still taking pictures….

I saw no other walkers at all today, and when I finished, mine was the only car in the car park.

If you want peace and quiet – go on a damp Monday in November.

birks fell map

Next walk in this series (although, not necessarily my next walk) is Buckden Pike on 8 November 2009 (my birthday!) 9:30 am Buckden Car Park start - some mild scrambling is involved...


peewiglet said...

That sounds like a great walk, though Langstrothdale looks truly desolate in all the rain. I was relieved to read that the second photo was of a tarn: initially I assumed it was just the result of far too much bloody rain! Phew...

(Piglet likes the look of your dog. She keeps coming to sit on the chair and navigating over to your page. She is in season. Hmmmm...)

(Oooh! Word='antshed'. Good one!)

mike knipe said...

I'm afraid your wee doggy will be disappointed with Bruno, as , due to being underfed before we got him, together with the gentle ministrations of our local vet, he doesnt actually have any "equipment", although if he gets a bit excited about something his bum does go up and down sometimes.
Its a shame, really, but there will definateley be no brunettes, brunelings or whatever.
Piglet will need to resolve her current situation by the passage of time and isolation from other naughty dogs.
Enjoyable walk, though - even if it was a bit bleak (I quite like bleak, as it happens...)

Phreerunner said...

Nice one, Mike - will have to do a 'catch-up' walk - I rather approve of your project.

mike knipe said...

Oh yes, Martin, I don't mind a catch-up walk... I'll publish the details of the December walks shortly.