Baugh Fell and the Waterfalls.

Start. Cross Keys.

Route. Cross Keys - High House - The Street - Rawthey Gill Quarry - Uldale Force - Baugh Fell - West Baugh Fell Tarn - West Baugh Fell - Birks - A683 - Cross Keys.

Notes. Unfortunately I had my casual walkers head on today, the vast expanse of sprawling high moorland that is Baugh Fell should not be taken lightly, I underestimated it and got a real kick in the teeth in the guise of a longer walk than anticipated. I graced this vast expanse of featureless moorland for the first time many moons ago, I disliked it then, I disliked it equally the next time I set foot on it's boggy slopes promising myself never to return, I broke that promise today, and detested almost every step. Impatience lead to frustration which in turn lead to errors in judgment, which inevitably lead to bad navigation. I eventually escaped the grip of the hill by sneaking down a farm lane back to civilisation. If you wish to come along grab a map and compass and unlike me use them, and who knows you may enjoy it.

I parked at the Cross Keys, Cautley, a short walk south along the main road lead to a finger-post announcing this was the path to the fell. I left the road ascending through sheep pastures soon stepping onto what is locally known as The Street, this old mettled track was once the main valley road, it guided me north before swinging east to access Uldale. The next mile or so was particularly attractive, lots of waterfall enriched the walk through the valley, unfortunately part of the route had been fenced forcing the walker to use the access and exit points provided by the land owner, this meant ascending out of the gorge a number of times before descending back to the river, by the time I reached Rawthey Gill Quarry I'd had my fill. My intended route was to follow the stream to Rawthey Gill Foot before letting the gill guide me to the trig point on Knoutberry Haw. On my next ascent I carried on climbing through a pathless wilderness crabbing from sheep track to sheep track, skirting wet ground the best I could eventually reaching West Baugh Fell Tarn thoroughly exhausted.

After sitting a while, without checking the map I descended, north-west, instead of north to Bluecaster and Shallow Hole, again no path. Over wet ground and a couple of deep gutters I picked my way only to be halted by the intake wall, a quick check of the map, too quick, too late. I followed the intake wall south, after fording a number of deep cut gills I stumbled onto a bridleway descending to Birks, the farm lane then guided me to the valley bottom, I stepped onto tarmac a disappointing mile and a half from the parked car.

view route map.


We've been there, Great Dummacks with Cautley Crag to the right.

From The Street views to Wandale Hill.

About to descend into Uldale, looking to Wild Boar Fell and Swarth Fell.

Swarth Fell as seen over the manicured landscape of Uldale.

The infant River Rawthey.

Looking back down Uldale.

In the cool of the gorge trying to get a decent view of Uldale Force.

Uldale Force.

Ascending the featureless slopes of Baugh Fell, looking to Wandale Hill over Uldale.

Dappled light on Wild Boar Fell with Swarth Fell to the right.

Taking a well earned rest at West Baugh Fell Tarn.

On the slopes of West Baugh Fell, looking to Cautley over Bluecaster.

Wonderful views from the flanks of West Baugh Fell, the valley of the River Rawthey and the Lune Valley.

Crossing the vast empty wilderness of West Baugh Fell looking to the Howgill Fells rising above Rawthey Dale, the principal top on view, Arant Haw.

Lit by the late morning sun, Fell End Clouds.

The Howgill Fells as viewed from the slopes of West Baugh Fell.

Looking back, rising above me, Baugh Fell.

From the vast desolation of West Baugh Fell views to the Middleton Fells above Dentdale, this grassed over mud filled trench I thought was a drainage ditch was actually an old mine track, it would have been easier to follow it off the hill.

From above Birks views to Great Dummacks and Yarlside.

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