Sunday, 9th August 2009

             

            

 

Walk: Threlkeld Side, Backstone Edge, Narrowgate Beacon, High Cup Nick, Murton village   
Start Point: Car park at Dufton Grid Reference: NY 688 248
Distance: 14 miles Ascent: 1,700 feet
Time: 7 hours    
Weather: Light breeze, overcast AM – patchy sunshine and warm PM. With good visibility.
Comments:

Seven walkers set off from Dufton for the steady climb up the Rundale valley track, the cloud lifting as we made our way up to the shooting box high on the moor near Great Rundale tarn. From here we headed across rough moor to the summit of Backstone Edge. Following the edge towards High Cup Nick we were treated to some fine views of the Lake District fells to the West as we approached the cairn at Narrowgate Beacon on the North Western rim of “The  Nick” .

Pausing at the cairn to take a few pictures we headed along the rim towards what has to be one of the most spectacular views in the Pennines, prompting an even longer pause to enable the photographers amongst us to record the scene. 

Although going “down the nick” looked impossibly steep from the top we were able to find a suitable route down avoiding most of the rocks and the promise of lunch meant that we were soon at the bottom of the steep section. The remainder of the route took us down the centre of the valley following High Cup Gill as it flows West to join the River Eden as Trout Beck. On to harbour flats and then to the picturesque village of Murton where we stopped to admire the old bobbin mill which has been converted into a house.

By contrast to the first half of the walk the remainder was across fields and woodland ending in the steep sided Dufton Gill. Here we could see evidence of an old sandstone quarry which was probably the source of the stone used to build the local houses. A short climb out of the gill took us back to the car park and the end of a walk which was enjoyed by all.    


Scroll down to see photos of the walk

Time for a pause before we . . .

 

head up the Rundale Valley . . .

 

where we have great views back to Dufton Pike with . . .

 

Brownber Hill to its right

 

Sheltering form the breeze the rocks main fine seats as we take our morning break

 

No-one fancies exploring the shooting hut today!

 

Becky admires the view from Backstone Edge . . .

 

and we can see most of the Lakes from Narrowgate Beacon

 

But the group seem to have spotted a different view . . .

 

which Ray takes a closer look at

 

High Cup Nick is spectacular  . . .

 

from this angle

 

Are we really going down the gap????

 

Phil spots a local resident . . .

 

who obligingly keeps still for a closer shot

 

The Grand Canyon of England

 

Now we just need to find the path . . .

 

which contours above the rocks . . .

 

which Ray prefers to make his way across . . .

 

for a pause on the grassy section of the descent

 

We pass a group going in the opposite direction . . .

 

who follow the path straight to the top (the route down wasn't clear from above)

 

Looking back the sun highlights the valley basin

 

Passing through Murton . . .

 

there are many interesting houses . . .

 

probably built from local sandstone

 

The bobbin mill has now been converted . . .

 

to a very nice looking house

 

An owl and friend keep an eye on the vegetable patch at Shepherd's Cottage

 

The Rowan tree is laden with berries (will it be a bad winter we ask?)

 

Looks like the farmer has been busy . . .

 

but it's some time since I saw hay bales stacked in a field

 

The last mile takes us along Dufton Gill back to the car park

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