Coniston (again!)

Start point: Walna Scar road (SD 289 970)

Walna Scar car park – Boo Tarn – The Old Man of ConistonBrim Fell – Levers Hawse – Great How – Swirl Band – Swirl How – Prison Band – Swirl Hawse – Levers Water – Boulder Valley – Walna Scar road

Distance: 6.2 miles     Total Ascent: 770 metres     Time Taken: 4 hours     Start Time: 06:15

Weather: Bright, sunny and windy above the clouds. 7C

The same fells on a different day – the prediction was for a further temperature inversion to the south and west today, so where better than Coniston? I particularly wanted to see the sunrise across the inversion, always a special sight so I was glad I made the effort to get up early and witness this magical spectacle.

The Coniston Fells

The Coniston Fells route map

Time Lapse video of the inversion

 

Great How on Swirl Band

Height: 770 metres / 2526 feet Grid reference: SD 27335 99948

Seathwaite Tarn from Great How Crags

Seathwaite Tarn from Great How Crags

Great Carrs, Swirl How and Great How Crags from the descent to Levers Hawse

Great Carrs, Swirl How and Great How Crags from the descent to Levers Hawse

Coniston Fells

Start Point: Walna Scar road (SD 289 970)

Walna Scar road – Coniston Old ManBrim Fell – Levers Hawse – Great How Great CarrsSwirl How – Prison Band – Swirl Hawse – Levers Water – Boulder Valley – Walna Scar road

Distance: 7 miles     Total Ascent: 862 metres     Time Taken: 4 hours     Start Time: 07:30

Weather: Some sunny spells, cool on top with showers, 16°C

The Coniston fells were shrouded in mist when I set off and they were in and out of the clouds all morning as the sun tried its best to shine through. It is a great ridge walk from The Old Man to Swirl How and a fair while since I have done it – I’m glad I did today as I enjoyed it and saw no one this Monday morning.

Coniston Fells Map

The Coniston Fells

Start point: The Sun Inn, Coniston (SD 300 975)

Coniston – Walna Scar road – Brown PikeBuck PikeDow Crag Goat’s  Hawse – Coniston Old Man  – Brim Fell Levers Hawse –  Great How Swirl How – Prison Band – Swirl Hawse – Levers Water – Boulder Valley – Coppermines Valley – Coniston

Distance: 10.2 miles    Total Ascent: 1085 metres     Time Taken: 5 hours 30 minutes

Weather: Cold and clear. -4°C

I actually came to Coniston yesterday (Wednesday 6th January) to walk theses fells but decided against it due to the heavy snow when I arrived there – I knew the fells would still be there another day and surely enough, this morning turned out lovely and clear. This would be fantastic and memorable day for a walk on the fells. According to Radio Cumbria, last night was the coldest ever recorded in Cumbria with a temperature of -14.5C recorded at Carlisle. When I got to Coniston it was -9C, so I knew it would be pretty cold today. As it turned out, it was quite warm in the sunshine but when in the wind or shade, then it was particularly noticeable how cold it really was.

Coniston Fells

Start point: Walna Scar road (SD 289 970)

Walna Scar road – The Old Man of Coniston  Brim Fell  Levers Hawse – Great How  Swirl How – Prison Band – Swirl Hawse – Levers Water – Boulder Valley – Walna Scar road

Distance: 6.2 miles     Total Ascent: 770 metres     Time Taken: 3 hours

Weather: Sunny, hazy and cool. 0°C.

 

The conditions were a little strange up on Coniston today, oddly cold – yet warm and clear – yet hazy! I never quite got above the haze layer today but the sun did manage to break through at times. The temperature was below freezing when I set off and when I returned yet in the sunshine it was really warm with the temperature only seemingly plummeting in the breeze at the top.

 

Coniston Round

Start point: Walna Scar road (SD 289 970)

Walna Scar road – Brown PikeBuck PikeDow Crag Goat’s  Hawse – Coniston Old Man Brim Fell Levers Hawse –  Great How Grey Friar Great Carrs Swirl How – Prison Band – Swirl Hawse –Wetherlam  – Red Dell – Boulder Valley – Walna Scar Road

Distance: 11.8 miles     Total Ascent: 1320 metres     Time Taken: 5 hours

Weather: Cold and windy. 4oC.

That wasn’t supposed to happen! The weather was predicted to be the same as yesterday, blue skies and general loveliness above the clouds – however, rule #1 is there is no accounting for the weather. There was a strong wind and grey skies above the low lying fog with the upper clouds only clearing at the very end of the walk. This was a good long walk on the shortest day of the year and the fells were surprisingly busy today.

Coniston Round

Start point: Walna Scar road (SD 289 970)

Walna Scar road – Brown PikeBuck Pike on Seathwaite FellDow Crag Goat’s  Hawse –Coniston Old Man Brim Fell Levers Hawse –  Great How  Swirl Band – Top of Broad Slack –Great Carrs Swirl How – Prison Band – Swirl Hawse – Levers Water – Boulder Valley – Walna Scar road

Distance: 10.5 miles     Total Ascent: 2670 metres     Time Taken: 4 hours 30 minutes

Weather: Very cold with gale force winds. 3oC, but much colder with the wind chill.

It didn’t look too promising when I set off along the Walna Scar Road and sure enough when I reached Brown Pike the wind was gale force and the hailstones were shotblasting my face. Magically, when I reached Dow Crag, the clouds cleared (blown away presumably!) and there were lovely blue skies. The wind was ever present and made the walking difficult at times; full winter gear was required today. Today was the first time I have ever been recognised on the fells from this website (okay, Angus was recognised to be technically correct). He’s famous that dog!

Coniston Round

Start point: Walna Scar road (SD 289 970)

Walna Scar road – Coniston Old Man Brim Fell Levers Hawse –  Great How Swirl How – Prison Band – Swirl Hawse – Levers Water – Boulder Valley – Walna Scar road

Distance: 7.1 miles     Total Ascent: 941 metres     Time Taken: 2 hours 30 minutes

Weather: Cloudy with sunny intervals. 18°C.

Connie had better things to do today so it was up to Coniston for me and Angus. The weather was variable with the odd spot of rain but there were generally good views, especially when we got to Swirl How. It was really busy up there today so we went the quietest way we could – straight up the nose of the Old Man and returning via Boulder Valley. Both are much quieter than the popular routes.

 

Coniston Old Man

Start point: Coniston (SD 150 896)

Coniston – Levers Water – Swirl Hawse – Prison Band –  Swirl How Great Carrs – Swirl Band – Great How  Levers Hawse – Brim Fell Coniston Old Man The Bell – Coniston

Weather: Dull, damp with a cold wind.

Today’s walk was a round of the Coniston fells. The weather has taken a turn for the worse again and the clear views and picture postcard snowy scenes have all blown away – the wind was gale force at times and the rain relentless.

A Coniston Round

Start point: Coniston (SD 304 976)

Coniston – Walna Scar road – Brown Pike (48) – Buck Pike on Seathwaite Fell (49) – Dow Crag (50) – Goat’s Hawse – Coniston Old Man (51) – Brim Fell (52) – Levers Hawse – Great How (53) – Grey Friar (54) – Little Carrs (55) – Hell Gill Pike (56) – Great Carrs (57) – Swirl How (58) – Prison Band – Swirl Hawse – Black Sails (59) – Wetherlam (60) – Coniston

Weather: Overcast with sunny spells. Very windy.

A long Coniston round today taking in all the highest tops and some of the less well known ones. It was a drizzly start but this soon cleared and there were lots of sunny intervals with some cloud coming in. There was a strong breeze all day growing to gale force by the end of the walk.

You may have noticed a distinct lack of Tarns on this walk. This is because there were so many to be seen, I have given them their own page and they can be viewed here.

Coniston Tarns

Start point: Coniston (SD 304 976)

Coniston – Walna Scar road – Brown Pike (48)Buck Pike on Seathwaite Fell (49)Dow Crag (50)Goat’s  Hawse Coniston Old Man (51) Brim Fell (52) Levers Hawse – Great How (53) Grey Friar (54) Little Carrs (55)Hell Gill Pike (56) Great Carrs (57) Swirl How (58) – Prison Band – Swirl Hawse – Black Sails (59)Wetherlam (60) – Coniston

It was amazing how many tarns and stretches of water could be seen on this Coniston Round; they are shown on this page.