Whinlatter from the pass

Looking up to Whinlatter from the pass road

Height: 1696 feet above sea level is the height quoted in Wainwright, but he disputes (on page 5 of his chapter) the fact that the summit surveyed at that height is actually the highest point of the fell; and it seems that later surveys have vindicated that view, as a spot height is now quoted on the OS map at 1722 feet (525 metres). This summit has a cairn and we treated it on our walk as the summit of the fell.

Volume: Book 6 (The North Western Fells)

Date climbed: 3rd June 2010 (walk 18)

Whinlatter, viewed from the final approach

Whinlatter, viewed from the final approach

Bagged as number: 58 out of 330. [ << Ling Fell (57)   (59) Rosthwaite Fell >> ]

Route of ascent and descent: Climbed from, and descended to, the Whinlatter Forest Visitor’s Centre. We then extended the walk down to go on to Thornthwaite then Braithwaite, a beautiful walk through the woods and highly recommended.

What Mr Wainwright says (from page 4 of his chapter): “Whinlatter tempts few walkers, the steep slopes of heather and scree above the Pass being too rough to contemplate, but the crest of the fell is entirely different — a delightfully undulating ridge, a joy to walk upon. It can be attained, moreover, by the simplest of gradients if the direct climb alongside the fence is disregarded in favour of the helpful forest roads… the whole of the walk then being no more than an hour’s ramble.”

View from Whinlatter summit

View from Whinlatter summit: in the background are the Solway Firth and hills of Galloway in Scotland

What I say: In AW’s day the forest visitors’ centre did not exist. Its presence has not made a great deal of difference to the map, but it has greatly added to the number of visitors – and mountain bikes – which will be encountered in the plantations. However, once out on the open fell we had the place virtually to ourselves. It is hardly a dramatic fell but the walking is easy and the views of Grisedale Pike very good: and I then thoroughly enjoyed the attractive walk back to Thornthwaite, then Braithwaite, through the plantations. As noted above, the top that AW identified as the summit is in fact lower than what he calls the ‘east top’, which has a cairn and was the point at which we ceased our traverse of the ridge. Note also that according to advice given in the visitor’s centre, there is now no public access to or egress from this fell at its western end, near Darling How farm.

[ << Whin Rigg      Whit Fell >> ]

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