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" Knott Rigg, Ard Crags for the heather "

Date & start time: Saturday  5th Sept 2015, 3.50 pm start.

Location of Start : Newlands Hause above Buttermere, Cumbria, Uk ( NY 193 177 )

Places visited : Ard Crags, Knott Rigg, out and back from Newlands Hause.

Walk details :  3.25 mls,  950 feet of ascent, 2 hour 20 mins.

Highest point : Ard Crags, 1,906ft - 581m

Walked with : Ann and our dogs, Harry and Dylan.

Weather : Beautifully sunny.

© Crown copyright. All rights reserved. License number PU 100034184.


An afternoon start for a walk up a double Wainwright fell,

but we go there for the colour as well as the long distance views.

A false start due to finding lost property and then we were off up the fell to seek out that colour.

The car park at Newlands Hause is fairly busy

but people have stopped to visit the falls as well as Knott Rigg so there are not so many people going our way.

We climb the elongated ridge heading for our two summits.

Looking south, the view leads you down to Buttermere village and then the Red Pike / Starling Dodd / Great Borne ridge on the far side.

Climbing up this steep south western ridge the views across to Robinson become quite dramatic.

The waterfall to the right is Moss Force and the zig-zag stream descending from the crags is appropriately known as High Hole Beck.

One day we might descend into High Hole . . . it looks a reasonable grassy rake down from Buttermere Moss.

Behind us . . . or in front of you if you turn around . . . is another ridge walk.

Left to right - Whiteless Pike / Wandope and Eel Crag (Crag Hill).   There's some good heather over there by the look of it.

The climb virtually over and the extended horizon now includes the whole of the High Stile Ridge.

The couple behind had 'never climbed so high in their life'. . . we encouraged them on to reach at least one summit

and they seemed to be following us.

Looking across the Newlands Valley towards Keswick . . . that's the Catbells, Maiden Moor, High Spy ridge with the crags.

One muddy pool later and we have reached the summit . . . Dylan stands by the diminutive cairn.

From the predominantly grassy summit of Knott Rigg the vegetation began to change, indicating some underlying change of geology.

There are several sheep up here each nibbling out an existence from the poor mountain vegetation.

Atmospheric Blue


Helvellyn Haze Grey


High Spy distant Mauve


Scope End Purple




High Snab Light Grass



Bracken Green



Moorland Brown




I've decided this adjacent photo

looks like one of those 'Dulux Colour Charts'

that you can get at a paint shop.


- - - o o o - - -


The charts shows how similar colours

blend together in an easy sequence.


On the way to Ard Crags now and we enter the section of the fell that seems to encourage the growth of the heathers.

Ann ventures off-piste for the sake of her art.

Looking back at Robinson . . . now being slowly hidden by the side ridge of Keskadale.

Looking the other way, the lovely heather forms a colourful carpet for the extensive view towards the east.

Ard Crags is not gained without effort as there is a dip in the ridge before we can climb to the second summit.

More lovely heather up here, this time coating the whole of the fellside.

A small crag alongside the easy path to the summit.
Another Swaledale eeking out an existence.

Knee deep in heather, he's not concerned with the lovely views across to distant Helvellyn and Catstycam.

Zooming in on the subject . . . leaving out the panoramic details.

I call to Ann just before the summit so that she and the dogs fill the foreground,

the distinctive undulations of Causey Pike forming the backdrop.

A passing cloud casts a slight shadow as we reach the top.

No need to progress further to Aiken Knott, it will only take us further from the car and add distance to our return trip.

Time to look around from the summit before we go . . . below us, almost vertically below, is Keskadale Farm. 

The photo perspective hides the steepness of those hairpin bends up to the farm.

With the bigger lens in place I can zoom in on the distant fells.

The second highest from the right is in fact taller in real terms . . . that's Scafell Pike, the highest summit in England.

As we stood there in the peace and quiet of the sunny day

there was an ever so gentle rumble of distant aircraft engines.


For once I had the right lens in place to capture the fly past

of a vintage aircraft from the second world war.

Any ideas ?


It was a restoredAmerican B17 Flying Fortress

which flies under the name of Sally B.


It's itinerary today I discovered later was ...

Dusxford to Podington Santa Pod Raceway - not landing
Portrush NI - not Landing
Ayr Scottish Air Show - landing Prestwick

That's two historic aircraft flying over the Lakes in the space of a month.

Time to be heading back . . . the colours tempered somewhat by looking directly into the sunshine.

The cloud has moved on and the flowers once again shine in the light.

Mixed Veg . . etation.

Slight colour differences presumably due to the variety and soil conditions.

What a lovely display of heather we've been treated to this year.

Back to moorland reality as we leave Knott Rigg summit behind us on our way back home.

Harry taking care due to his mature years.
Dylan full of teenage exuberance.

Both dogs safely gathered in for the steep descent to the car once more.

- - - o o o - - -


Technical note: Pictures taken with either Ann's Canon Sureshot SX220, or my Canon 1100D Digital SLR.

Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.

This site best viewed with . . . the satisfaction of finding the owners of the lost items.

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Previous walk - 31st August 2015 - Heather and a Loweswater Sunset

A previous time up here - 28th February 2014 - Knott Rigg and Ard Crags

Next walk - 6th September 2015 - The Loweswater Show 2015

Click here to view the YouTube video of the RAF - Vulcan Bomber over Keswick