Missing out the Man
There are a few Wainwrights which don’t form a logical circuit from Coniston and had so far eluded me.
Previously I had seen people appear over the rim of Goat’s Hause from the Seathwaite side of the hills and looking at what was missing from my list, Grey Friar, Great Cars, Swirl How and Brim Fell, I could hit them all without having to re-trace my steps. I hadn’t really accounted for the extra walk to Seathwaite tarn, but never mind.
As it had poured with rain the previous evening, the temptation to take a detour down to see the falls was just too great. The sound of water could be heard as soon we walked into the valley.
Niagara eat your heart out! White water spayed into haze across the skyline. Rainbows strung across the falls, spreading wide over trees and heather clad rocks. So captivating I almost gave up on the hills.
Back on track and over to Seathwaite tarn I wasn’t sure how easy it would be to find the way up to Grey Friars, but I wasn’t the first to find the suggested route from Mark Richard’s book, there was quite a clearly trod path up. Unfortunately the sun had taken it’s ball out of play and clouds were beginning to edge over the sky.
I had read of wonderful views of Pillar. Where?
But as ever the mist disappears just as quickly and by the next stop was reached the grey had just about peeled back from Tilberthwaite. Good to see the top of Wetherlam as I hadn’t when I climbed up it.
So next a bit of up and down the rock strewn paths over Swirl and Brim Fell. The mist never quite deciding on coming or going.
Seathwaite Tarn came back on the right, with first Levers then Goat tarn on the left, and time to return. Deep shadows suggested more than mist so a good time to be heading back.
If you have more energy you can continue on higher ground and but we landed on a very wet valley floor and with the torrential rain the previous evening, crossing the stream was an interesting came of stepping stones.
As it was my new, first time out boots were thoroughly tested as most of the paths on the valley floor had turned into streams.
An alternative to Coniston Old Man or Walna Scar road, just a bit more fuel for the car!
The map and route