Wainwrights The Final Countdown Part 5

Scott is available to come for a run which obviously means the weather forecast is disappointing. High chances of rain most of the day accompanied by low visibility. We decide to try the Far Eastern Fells which seems to have a greater chance of fine weather. I’ve got 4 left in this book and would be happy to get them done. Everything in this area is grassy so no problems with wet rocks if it does rain.

Troutbeck is our starting point and the idea is to get round in about 4 hours so I’m in time for the Sunderland match. The village doesn’t have many parking spaces so I’m happy to find an empty one and squeeze in next to the wall after Scott gets out. After a couple of hundred metres on the road we start up a gravel track which takes us up onto the fells.

Cattle relaxing as we climb

Wansfell (Baystones)

Wansfell Pike is our first stop. It isn’t the highest point but has a nice view of Windemere. It isn’t a particularly hard climb but as we are just getting warmed up it seems to take a long while to get there. After a few photos we follow the path along the wrong side of the wall and have to jump over to get back on track.

Windemere from near the top of Wansfell Pike

The top Waintwright called Wansfell is actually Baystones and is further along the ridge. Everything is grassy except for the slightly rocky tops. A quarter of my new Wainwrights done already. I’m hoping the rest are as easy.

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Scott on Baystones

Troutbeck Tongue

This one looks so easy. Follow the path to Kirskstone Pass, cross the road take a path into the fells and contour South. I don’t take into consideration a 6ft high wall that’s not on the map. Having already successfully jumped a low wall this one looks impenetrable until we see a chink in the armour around a tree.

Huge Dragonfly on the beck under Troutbeck Tongue

Job done we are on our way again past an area where boxes are being made to protect trees from deer. After an invigorating walk up the flank we find Troutbeck Tongue. There must have been an easier way to get there from the road but we didn’t find it. New Wainwright no 2 completed.

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View from Troutbeck Tongue

Frostwick, Ill Bell and Yorke

I loved running the Kentmere Horseshoe a few years ago. When running it clockwise the first top is Yorke followed by Ill Bell and Frostwick. Today we are doing them in the opposite direction but first there is a climb from the stream at the bottom of the valley up to Frostwick. It looks like hard going but the alternatives are worse so we set off up the first distinct path of the day. Despite the climb it is easy to follow and I get a nice picture on the way up.

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Troutbeck Tongue on the climb to Frostwick

These 3 tops are much higher than our targets today but should make the run more interesting. Scott hasn’t done any of them so its all new to him. Almost at the top of the path we cut right to High Street the Roman Road and are soon at Frostwick summit.


It is a reasonably easy run from Frostwick to Ill Bell the next peak on our run. The view of Kentmere is nice from the left hand side and we reach Ill Bell pretty quickly.

View of Kentmere from the path between Frostwick and Ill Bell

I’ve promised Adrian a run around this horseshoe but that’s going to have to wait until I’ve finished the final Wainwrights. Today would have been perfect weather not too hot and no rain, sorry Adrian.

Ill Bell

After Ill Bell the path continues to Yorke which is the last top today over 700m. Time is beginning to look tight to get myself to Sunderland for the SAFC v Ipswich Town game. I’ve got two new Wainwrights to go which are more important than the season’s opening game.

Ill Bell from Yorke


The next two are on an easy to follow path from Yorke. Instead of taking the left hand fork down to Kentmere we stay on the left towards our targets. Sallows is a bit of a let down with not much to see compared to the higher tops. An Ordnance Survey cap is the most interesting thing I can see.

Former trig point on Sallows

Sour Howes

Last one for the day Sour Howes, after making good time on Sallows the game is on. We can see a couple of people sitting on the top of Sour Howes eating and head straight for them. I’m busy trying to work out the way down and just run towards the picnickers. A quick photo later we are on our way. The theme of the day is repeated as we climb over another collapsed wall.

Sour Howes or not Sour Howes that is the question

Back To Troutbeck

We dop down then climb back out of the valley to Troutbeck via some well maintained paths. Only the start of the route from Sour Howes was lacking. The path brings us out less than 10 metres away from the car. It was like we planned it instead of just taking the last parking space. I drop off Scott at South Stanley and I’m in my seat at the Sunderland match 10 minutes before kick off. Job done, or not as Summit Bag says we missed the top of Sour Howes.

A couple of miles back to Troutbeck

They were watchin’ the mistress instead of their gill

What a kick in the teeth. That’s what happens when you don’t pay enough attention. Tommy Armstrong the Pitman Poet to Tanfield Lea has a line in his comedy song “The Hedgehog Pie” which sums it up perfectly. I was thinking too much about getting back to Troutbeck when the sensible thing would have been to concentrate on Sour Howes.

Noo, Barbour and Kingey sat winkin’ their eye

And wishin’ they only could get a bit pie;

They were watchin’ the mistress instead of their gill –

The smell was that nice, they could hardly keep still.

Lyrics from Tommy Armstrong The Great Balladeer of the Coalfields

It isn’t all bad as it means I can visit the Kentmere Horseshoe again with a detour to tick Sour Howes off the list.


New Wainwrights bagged Sallows, Baystones, Troutbeck Tongue

Wainwrights left 29

Northern Fells

Great Sca Fell, Brae Fell, Meal Fell, Great Cockup, Longlands Fell, Binsey

North Western Fells

Castle Crag

Southern Fells

Lingmell, Allen Crags, Slight Side, Cold Pike, Harter Fell (Eskdale), Seathwaite Fell, Hard Knot, Green Crag, Lingmoor Fell, Black Fell, Holme Fell

Western Fells

Starling Dodd, Great Bourne

Central Fells

Pavey Ark, Loft Crag, Tarn Crag (Easedale), Blea Rigg, Gibson Knott, Helm Crag, Silver How, Loughrigg Fell

Eastern Fells


Far Eastern Fells

Sour Howes

Companions: None

Run on Strava

If you enjoyed reading this blog I’m sure you would like others in the Wainwrights The Final Countdown series.

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