Walk 3037 - printer friendly version
High Seat & Bleaberry Fell from Keswick Walk
Author - Lou Johnson
Length - 9.0 miles / 14.6 km
Ascent - 1960 feet / 594 metres
Grade - moderate
Start - OS grid reference NY265228
Lat 54.595015 + Long -3.1390793
Postcode CA12 5DJ (approx. location only)
The territory covered by this Lake District walk is full of contrasts from the shores of Derwentwater with views to Catbells and the north-western Fells to open fells where Lakeland panoramas rule supreme. The open fellside between the two summits is often wet under foot and it is best to complete this walk either after a dry spell or during days when the peat is frozen hard.
The car park adjacent to the Theatre and main landing stage in Keswick (grid ref. NY265228) is the best place to start. From here follow the road downhill towards the lakeside and follow the clear path heading south. The lakeside section is full of fine viewpoints and the first of these is Friars Crag from where you get a fine view south to Borrowdale. Stay with the main path, which briefly leaves the shore at the Ings to regain it shortly afterwards at Stable Hills.
Calfclose Bay is soon reached and here you have to climb up to the roadside footpath. On reaching the junction to Watendlath turn left and follow the lane steeply uphill to reach Ashness Bridge. Just before the bridge take the path left. This contours across the hillside to pass through a wall. Just after turn right and follow the path uphill. You will scramble up a few low rock steps and leaving the well trodden route take to the open fellside and head northeast aiming for the sheepfold marked on the OS map (grid ref. 278201). Despite the lack of path the going is fairly straightforward and providing you go uphill you cannot really go wrong!
Reaching the sheepfold you will meet the main path from Walla Crag to the summit of Bleaberry Fell. Turn right along this well marked route and head for the summit cairn. Nearing the top the path steepens but quite soon you will be enjoying the views to Helvellyn and Blencathra. You can see the next objective, High Seat, about a mile south. This is the section of path that can be very wet and boggy. In general the route is easy to follow and provided you stay on the west side of the fence you will reach a cross fence with a stile. Go over this and the summit will be gained after a mild scramble to enjoy even better views in every direction.
From High Seat retrace your steps to Bleaberry Fell perhaps taking the path on the western slopes that avoids a second visit to the summit. Continue downhill past the sheepfold with the next objective of Walla Crag now in view. The best viewpoint is reached by crossing a stile to reach an open area with a grandstand view of Derwentwater and Skiddaw. After taking in the view recross the stile to rejoin the main path and follow it north-westwards with a wall on your left. The path starts to descend quite steeply reaching a lane at Rakefoot.
Follow the lane for a short way and take the first signed footpath on your left. This leads down over a footbridge before descending further through Springs Wood to reach a residential road (grid ref. 272226). With the housing on your right head in the direction of Keswick. After approximately 400 metres turn left down a signed footpath. This leads through Castlehead Wood to reach the main Borrowdale Road. (If you have the energy you can make the short diversion to the summit of Castlehead from where there is an excellent view across Derwentwater). Reaching the road turn right and continue on the roadside footpath to the first roundabout. Here you should take the left turn to reach a second roundabout. Turn left again and the car park where you started is on your left.