Yorkshire Dales Walks
Ingleborough & Whernside
Date: 30th May 2005
Distance: 12.4 miles
Ascent: 3357 feet
Time: 6 hours 15 mins
Start Grid Ref: SD764790
Route Summary: Ribblehead - Winterscales - Whernside - Bruntscar - Philipin Lane - Humphrey Bottom - Ingleborough - Simon Fell - Park Fell - Gauber Road - Ribbleshead
Walk Summary: Although just two days before heavy rain had been forecast it was in fact a glorious day.
After swiftly crossing under Ribblehead we arrived at Winterscales Farm to begin the ‘direct’ ascent of Whernside. It was actually quite tiring heading up Winterscales Pasture to the final steep section. The final steep path was badly degraded and following a dry spell the ground was loose and dusty. It was a bit hairy because one slip could send you a long way down.
The views from Whernside were so good that we actually headed east along the ridge to look down upon the Whernside Tarns and take some pictures of the Dentdale and Howgills scene.
Our route from Whernside to Ingleborough was the same as the Three Peaks though this time we had a quick break at the farm in Chapel-le-Dale where they served a lovely cool orange juice.
The section towards Humphrey Bottom passes through some lovely limestone scenery though I had forgotten how long the path was to finally reach Humphrey Bottom. The scramble up from Humphrey Bottom was as enjoyable as I remember it from the Three Peaks.
Though this was my third visit to Ingleborough it was the first time I had been able to enjoy the views, which were excellent. Incidentally this was the first walk where I’d successfully made it to a view indicator in clear visibility.
I was disappointed though with the number of people up there especially as one person thought the view indicator was something to sit on top of while another idiot obviously believed it was a suitable place to talk very loudly on his mobile. To add to the discomfort a pair of pesky sheep kept pestering for food while we tried to eat our lunch.
From Ingleborough we left heading east for the true purpose of the walk that was to bag Simon Fell one of the last couple of 2000fters we had to do. It was not much of a climb to the top of Simon Fell and in truth its unmarked top was a bit of an anti-climax.
From Simon Fell we continued on to the lower but more distinct Park Fell. The top of the latter with its pools, OS Column and superior views was also more satisfying as a summit than Simon Fell. The descent from Park Fell was quite steep and my left knee was still a little delicate after my holiday earlier that month in the Cairngorms.
The last part of the walk was a fairly dull stretch along the road back to Ribblehead where we were nearly taken out by a motorcyclist going at a ridiculous speed. All in all it was an enjoyable walk with some of the best visibility I’d had.
1. The Ribblehead Viaduct backed by Whernside
2. Looking across Chapel-le-dale to Whernside and Simon Fell
3. The steep eroded path we took to the top of Whernside
4. By the trig point on Whernside
5. Some of the limestone pavement on the way to Humphrey Bottom
6. The steep route up on to Ingleborough from Humphrey Bottom
7. Looking back across to Whernside
8. The northern flanks of Simon Fell
9. Matt by the trig point on Ingleborough
10. One of the pesky sheep on Ingleborough
11. Matt on Ingleborough looking north-west to the Lake District
12. Matt on the unmarked top of Simon Fell with Ingleborough behind
13. Looking down at the Ribblehead Viaduct from Park Fell
14. By the trig point on Park Fell