A short walk over Ling Fell and Sale Fell

1st March 2015

Having read the weather forecast the previous evening it was agreed we would plan a walk that didn't involve gaining too much height, the reason for this was the forecasted showers pushed along by 50-60mph winds.

I & indeed we have stood in winds close to 50mph and I can vouch that only after a couple of minutes standing there I was glad I could drop out of it, walking especially in exposed areas can be a conversation killer, not bad when like me you often mutter to or worse, sing to yourself, but not in company.

It was agreed we would drive to the Wythop Valley & take in two of Lakelands most north westerly fells of Ling & Sale Fell both of which, I regrettably have to say, I haven't visited for a number of years.

It all started at the parking spaces at Burnston Bridge, where I had a little trouble trying to park my car.

Wainwright Guidebook Six
The North WesternFells

-Sale Fell:

Sale Fell is the extreme corner - stone of the North Western fells, with an outlook ranging far. It is a familiar sight on the busy Keswick - Workington road, of which it has an over site for several miles; going west along the road, Sale Fell marks the end of Lakeland.


Ascent: 1,800 Feet - 549 Meters
Wainwrights: 2, Ling Fell -Sale Fell
Weather: Unsettled with sunny intervals, recorded gusts of 40mph across the summits. Highs of 6°C Lows of 6°C Feels like -5.2°C
Parking: Brumston Bridge, Wythop Mill
Area: North Western
Miles: 5.9
Walking With: David & Jennifer Hall
Ordnance Survey: OL4
Time Taken: 3 Hours
Route: Brumston Bridge - Eskin - Corpse Road - Ling Fell - above Burthwaite - Eskin - Brumston Bridge - Kelswick Farm - Ling Fell - Rivings - Lothwaite - Wythop Church - west side of Sale Fell - Brumston Bridge

Map and Photo Gallery


Looking back on Sale Fell from Ling Fell corpse road.

We had planned to arrive at Brumston Bridge Wythop Mill sometime around 09:00am, it wasn't long after when we arrived to find the parking spaces empty leaving us ample space to leave the cars, David neatley reversed his car into the space as I watched the front of his car almost scrape the tarmac due to there being a dip between the road and the slightly elevated spaces, soon after I repeated but found my cars front bumper did in actual fact scrape the tarmac ever so slightly, being the idiot I am I thought I'd give it another go for good measure, the sound of my bumper once again could only be compared to extracting teeth without anaesthetic...

Back up Paul...

In the end I realised there was no way my car would back into the spaces so I did a quick recky whilst at the same time spotting a layby further up the road, it was here I reversed my car into taking note that I had left the car at good 10° angle.

With David & Jennifer ready we strode off in the direction of Brumston Bridge quickly noting that even so low in the valley the wind was rushing through the trees above our heads at quite a pace already.

After crossing Brumston Bridge our road climbed steadily before arriving at a T Juction, this was our queue to turn right & head for the steel gate just a short distance away. Our path soon lead us onto open fellside where we soon found that we were walking head long into a westerly wind, our path rose gently across the fell side as we took in the gentle incline heads down only stopping for conversation once we had our backs to the wind.

Windy in't it!

Casting shadows over Embleton from the summit of Ling Fell.
Our path soon switched back where we were met by just a short haul towards the summit of Ling Fell, behind us blue skies stretched as far as the Cumbrian coast and beyond.

Not far now.

Jennifer crowns Ling Fell by standing at the summit trig point.

The summit of Ling Fell was as expected, exceedingly windy which with the added bonus of a cool wind chill made for the briefest of summit times.

We soon left the summit with our backs to the wind which at least gave for some welcome respite where conversation was soon restored.

Views over Burthwaite towards Sale Fell.

It was not only great to be out of the wind but in the sunshine too as it drifted across the fell side at a great pace in most instances all of which was over quicker than the time it took to get the camera out.

It was here we plotted our route opting to gain Sale Fell by first passing Kelswick Farm then an east stroll by the stone wall lets just hope this sunshine continues.

Above Burthwaite.
After a rather careful descent we soon found ourselves on the footpath which lead us above Burthwaite. Ling Fell acted as a wind break leaving the walk back to Brumston Bridge feeling typically like the Sunday walk we had planned.

Now heading back through Eskin close to Brumston Bridge.
Back at the T Juction where we took a left to cross over Brumston Bridge.

Looking back on Ling Fell while en-route to Kelswick Farm.

Our route can be seen if you follow the treeline below Ling Fell from left to right, Brumston Bridge sits low in the valley hidden in the photo close to the tall Pine Trees.

I don't think I can ever remember walking past the cars en-route before as we did today, if the weather had been any worse the temptation might have got the worse of us, but thankfully despite the gusts once more we passed them by as the tarmac road rose steadily towards Kelswick Farm.

Kelswick Farm.
The Snow Drops were putting on a royal show close to Kelswick Farm but together with the low light & the hidden undergrowth we opted not to have a wonder over, still, a welcome site to see at the very beginning of Spring.

Looking down the track over Kelswick Farm & Ling Fell.
This is what Sunday walking is all about when the higherfells around you are topped in cloud. It was here the wind started to pick back up which deadend conversation again, it wasn't so much its strength but the chill which kept the runny noses busy.

Jennifer making her stance on Sale Fell summit.

After following the stone wall we rounded the eastern side of Sale Fell before a short climb towards the summit, the wind by now was blowing directly at us once again as one by one we all strode for the highest point.

David & I took a few shots while trying to keep a steady hand in the wind, it was while at the summit did I dig both my walking poles into the ground but the wind soon got the better of them no sooner had I turned around. Uncomfortable to stand up in maybe too strong a word as Jennifer demonstrates as once again summit time was kept to a minimum.

Heading over to Rivings from Sale Fell.
We soon dropped from the summit where normality was regained, we agreed to head over to Rivings seen just beyond the stone wall running horizontal across the fell side, it was a place I hadn't visited before & was quite looking forward to seeing.

Here, looking back on Sale Fell just as the sun decides to make an appearance.

Lothwaite seen from Rivings.
It was a great bonus to include both Rivings & Lothwaite into the walk, found only a short distance away from Sale Fell the extended excursion is more than worth it with fantastic airy views back over Sale Fell.

Sale Fell as we approach Lothwaite.
It wasn't just the views back over Sale Fell that domminated our views as we approached the bench that Jennifer claimed as 'her seat' you can see why...

The Ullock Ridge & Skiddaw seen over Bassenthwaite taken from Jennifers seat.
Having not been here before the last thing I expected to see was this surprise view of Bassenthwaite which as we spoke about, was probably one the best views to take in Bassenthwaite by such little gain.

Sale Fell & Ling Fell from Jennifers seat.

Although it was sheltered to a certain degree sitting down wasn't without its discomforts as like the two women in the photo, it was best to keep moving.

Our path took us down besides the stone wall where once again we had to walk headlong into the wind which you would have thought we would have been used to by now. As we made our descent towards Wythop Church we passed many a walker out for a Sunday walk or if your feeling energetic, a Sunday run.

Heading down towards Wythop Church.
Options opened up, did we want to follow the stone wall across the fell side or head down towards the Church?

Wythop Church.
The Church it was, it was only a short decline followed by short ascent back onto the path by the stone wall, viewed even from the back Wythop Church is still a wonderful building but I guess they had that in mind when they built it back in 1866, the original Church found close to Chapel Wood, now in ruin dated back between the 14th and 16th Centuries.

Views over Bassenthwaite & Binsey from the western side of Ling Fell.
We could have walked back along the road found close to Wythop Church but instead decided to rejoin one of many summit paths for Sale Fell. I wasn't sure about anyone else but I did give summiting Sale Fell twice today some thought all though I think the wind once we gained height quickly banished those thoughts.

Almost back at the car, Ling Fell seen as we descend Sale Fell.

Our path soon lead us away via branch of path bound for Kelswick/Brumston Bridge where we had the option of descending the fell side by means of a very steep path besides a stone wall, we opted out of this not for any other particular reason in that we weren't in any rush to get back to the cars.

This walk or indeed any type of low level walk when the forecast isn't great for the higher fells comes highly recommended, often I have sat out bad forecast at home when really all I had to do was use my common sense & take the forecast with a pinch of salt, after all...it should have been raining today.

Besides, even if you do get wet, with rewards like todays walk, well, I guess that's why they put heaters in cars.


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