BB1441 : It's Brim Up There

Tuesday 18th November 2014

It was that word again.  "Interesting".  Only this time it fell from the lips of Andrew, not Bryan.  Worse, it was an invitation to Bryan to find us an "interesting" route.  Which, of course, is what he did.

The morning was much better than expected as we parked at the Walna Scar Road.  And it continued fine as we set off up the tourist route to Coniston Old Man.

The tourist route begins

It was at Crowberry Haws that we slipped into "interesting" mode by turning off for Boulder Valley.  What you get is what is says on the tin.  Or the map.  Boulders.

The Pudding Stone

Later, looking back down Boulder Valley

Having passed the intriguingly named "Pudding Stone" and crossed Low Water Beck, Bryan decided it was time to get really interesting and to climb the hidden path up to Low Water.  "Look" he said.  "It's Brim up there". That was our objective:  Brim Fell.  One along from Coniston Old Man and nearly the same height.

However, our way was obstructed.  Not by boulders but by shepherds.  They say it about policemen but when shepherds are starting look young, you know you are getting really old.  They and their pack of Border Collies were rounding up the hefted sheep.  Martin asked Shep the names of the dogs.  "These here are Dido, Bendigo, Bonnie Lass and Rover and," he said pointing, "with him, Jim, it's Trim up there."

Dido, Bendigo, Shep, Bonny Lass and Rover

It took them quite a while to accomplish their task before our way ahead was clear - a steep but not dangerous climb. It was not quite a scramble but plenty of hand-on.

A feature en-route was a mining cave entrance with its rails still more or less intact.  

We explored it for some way until we reached an old cart which seemed to be strategically placed to warn folk not to go further into the hillside any further so we didn't.

We returned instead to the climb.

Trim with Jim

The mine track

Before long we emerged at Low Water, a small tarn within the arena created by the flanks of the Old Man.  

Bryan consulting the map at Low Water tarn

Bryan found the escape route that led us to Raven Tor where we had lunch.  The clag obscured the sun and prevented us from seeing the tops but Bryan reassured us.  "It's Brim up there".   It's dim up there would have been more appropriate. There was now a strong and cold easterly wind so I was keen to get moving and the blood circulating as soon as we could.

Although it was in cloud, we soon reached the summit of Brim Fell.

A glimpse of Brim Fell summit with Coniston Old Man behind

Dow Crag

 From here we had several choices but the day had changed.  In fact it was grim up there.

On top of grim Brim Fell

We could see that the surrounding tops, many of which were still enshrouded.  Of course, as made our way to Swirl How, the cloud started to lift!

Looking back to Brim Fell, Levers Water to the left.  Raven Tor is the bump between them.

Our descent was via the Prison Band.  Andrew asked why it was known as Prison Band so I told him.  It's because there was once an escape of musicians who had been incarcerated at Haverigg Jail (Porridge).  Still playing their instruments, the wardens found more than one crim up there.  Ok, ok, that's enough silliness of 'im up theres!

Comitibus :  Levers Water in front of Brim Fell

We joined the track to Levers Water that those of us on BB1434 : The BOOTboy's Bare Botty had trodden recently.

Likewise we stopped at the dam for a coffee and Comitibus photo.

Although the weather had changed for the better, no-one went skinny dipping this time.

Instead, we resumed our descent, passing the old mine shafts and the larger, lower workings where some activity was still taking place.

It was turning into a lovely late afternoon and you could see the hills clearly again.  

"Oh look," I said. "It's Brim up there."

Don, Tuesday 18th November 2014

Coniston Water from Boulder Valley

Pike o'Blisco and the Langdales from Swirl How

Levers Water

The Most Humbling and Uplifting Day of my Life

That is how Philip described his first full day in Khiraule.  To follow his blog, click on:

Khiraule:  The Trail and the Tale.




Tuesday 18th November

Distance in miles

8.3  (Garmin 62s)

Height climbed in feet

2,787 (Memory Map)


Brim Fell, Swirl How


Andrew, Bryan, Don, Martin


BOOTboys routes are put online in gpx format which should work with most mapping software. You can follow our route in detail by downloading bb1441 .

To discover which Wainwright top was visited on which BB outing - although it may not be that up to date - see: Which Wainwright When?

For the totals of the mileages and heights (ditto) see: BB Log.

Photos have been gleaned from many sources although mostly from me!
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