Wainwrights The Final Countdown Part 8

For a few hours three weeks ago I’d completed the Far Eastern Fells. Then I hadn’t, missing the summit of Sour Howes. Today was a revenge mission, a walk with Tracy to bag Sour Howes and reclaim the completed badge. On a sunny August Bank Holiday Monday we had a pleasant drive to Kentmere to start our walk which would take in Sallows and Sour Howes. I’m determined not to embarrass myself by missing the top again and have 2 phones with OS map apps and a paper map and compass today.

View from the climb

Garburn Pass

I’m confident I know the way to Garburn Pass from the parking field. Up the little hill follow the road round to the left then look for a right hand turn. For once I’m right but it doesn’t stop me from checking the map a couple of times. We begin to climb and despite Tracy’s previous misgivings she is doing well and taking regular stops to decrease her heart rate. The pass is a steady climb full of imported rock with the occasional stream or other wet part creeping across the path.

Climbing Garburn Pass (Sallows on the left)

The most exciting thing that happens on the way up is finding a Golden-ringed Dragonfly on the path. We take a photograph and move it off the path. The dragonfly decides it doesn’t like its new surroundings and flies away down the valley. A nice break to an arduous climb for Tracy.

Golden-ringed Dragonfly


We reach the junction between the Garburn Pass and path to Sallows. It hasn’t rained much so should be OK. There would usually be a bog and a pool of water on the path. A couple of hundred metres in it kicks up and gets steeper with a bit of an indentation to step over too. Tracy has a rest and admires the views towards Yorke and beyond.

Looking towards Yorke

We reach the top of Sallows still in the same place it was earlier in the month. Tracy likes the lake behind her and get a couple of photos. Now for the part I messed up last time.

Sallows Summit

Sour Howes

As we are coming down from Sallows we see a runner coming up. He is doing pretty well and is followed by another runner a few minutes later. Tracy thinks I’m itching to run and leave her behind but I’m quite happy making sure I do the job properly. As we approach Sour Howes I’m totally confused. How did we miss this part last time? Possibly because there weren’t people partying on it? OS on both phones confirms we are in the right place.

Sour Howes straight ahead

We get our photographs taken and decide to head down to the pass behind Sallows. A more circular route but without the climb back up and descent down. It doesn’t quite work out to plan with a barbed wire fence to be navigated before hitting the pass. Tracy doesn’t complain as she ducks under the spiked wire. We are back on the main path and soon get back to the Sallows/Yorke crossroads. I’m tempted to ask if Tracy is interested in another peak but think better of it and we start down the pass.

Mark on Sour Howes

Heading Home

On the way home just after Barnard Castle there is a bit of slow traffic ahead and we catch up with a magnificent Triumph convertible. It isn’t very good on the hills but once of the flat it corners magnificently and soon leaves us behind. The picnic basket and headscarf are good period pieces and we have a bit of chat how it could’ve be Queen Elizabeth and the Duke Of Edinburgh out for a drive. It ends a nice day on the hills bagging Wainwrights on the final countdown.


New Wainwrights bagged Sour Howes

Wainwrights left 18

Northern Fells

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

North Western Fells

Castle Crag

Southern Fells

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

Western Fells

Starling Dodd, Great Bourne

Central Fells

Loughrigg Fell

Eastern Fells


Far Eastern Fells


Companions: Tracy

Walk 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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