Great Calva

Day 2 for us in the Lakes and a decision to be made, walk from the house or scoot around to the Gale Road car park and head up to Skiddaw Little Man. The former won the vote due to a late start and therefore no need to worry about parking anywhere, we were heading out the back of Skiddaw with a plan to ascend Great Calva and Bakestall. The weather was dry to start as we headed across fields to Peter House farm, however heading under Dead Crags the rain started falling, we decided to head for Great Calva first, but it wasn’t looking good already for Bakestall. By the time we turned off the main track, to follow the black dark soggy path up to Great Calva we had binned the idea of Bakestall and concentrated on keeping dry, something that I failed at as I’d left the front of my jacket open a bit at the top, with the strong wind blowing around 50 mph at the top my t-shirt was soaked as was my baselayer, on the descent I was getting very cold, so stripped my t-shirt off knowing that my baselayer would dry very quickly and then warm me. Apart from that though, the walk itself was pretty good, its an easy fell to get to considering its a bit of a walk in and even in the boggy conditions the ascent up a river of rain on black oozy mud. Then we arrived back at Dash Falls, and the whole of Binsey and beyond was bathed in sunshine, like a sunny oasis in a desert of horrid rain. The walk back down was glorious, we dried off, warmed up a bit and enjoyed every step. Up to that point we had been tested with the weather, but the end was just joyous.

Start – Bassenthwaite village

Route – Peter House Farm – Dead Crags – Dash Falls – Great Calva – Dash Falls – Dead Crags – Melbecks – Chapel Beck Bridge – Bassenthwaite

Distance – 10 miles    Start time – 11am   Time taken – 5hrs 30mins Highest Point – Great Calva 690metres

Weather – Low clouds, heavy rain and strong winds on the summit, then glorious sunset to finish.

© Crown copyright 2022 Ordnance Survey FL 2022 SF
Starting out from Bassenthwaite and the avenue of trees
That was our cottage in the middle, the cattle barn to the left and Sale Fell at the back
Looking along the valley holding Lake Bassethwaite, that’s Ullock Pike up to the left. In the cloud to the right would be Barf and Lord’s Seat
Looking back and catching a piece of Lake Bassenthwaite and Sale Fell again (behind the tree)
Peter House Farm
We went straight across the road at Peter House Farm and joined the lane which ends up at Dash farm, Dead Crags are ahead on the right
Following the path which heads under Dead Crags, with Dash Falls now in view
With all the rain the Lakes had, had over the previous weeks, it was no surprise to see the falls in spate
Binsey can been seen peeking out as we look back, the rain was starting to fall a bit more now
Crossing over the top of Dash Falls the path switches and climbs a bit, Binsey just in view in the distance
We’d walked the main path on the photo above for another 20 mins or more before we turned left after a stream to head up this path towards Great Calva up there, the path was muddy but the majority of the water was coming from above and sideways as the wind got stronger as we climbed.
The summit of Great Calva, we’d seen hardly a soul on this walk but on arriving here a couple arrived from the Little Calva direction and then disappeared easterly towards Wiley Gill as quick as they came. We were glad to tick this one off and start the descent
Descending the rain eased slightly and the cloud began to lift a bit to unveil Lonscale Fell. The views along the central cleft of the Lakes are well known from Great Calva, as you can see the valley as it runs from here passing Lonscale Fell and down Thirlmere to Loughrigg Fell
Back down the muddy path, I’d stopped to take of my wet t-shirt hence Linda waiting ahead of me
Mungrisdale Common appears opposite to Lonscale Fell as the cloud lifts further
Now out of the rain looking back up to a clear Great Calva
Those with a keen eye will see Skiddaw Hause and the youth hostel centre right of photo
A monotone look to the west but the cloud has a clear edge to it and there was brightness beyond it. Binsey is clearly in view and behind it we see Criffel in Scotland
A bit further on and its looking promising
Passing Dash Falls again, White Hause up to the left and…….
…..looking the other way we have sun, Binsey catches the warm glow
Looking along the valley which takes you to Trusmadoor and Meal Fell. I like that Dash Farm is in the shade of Dead Crags on the right
Glorious light and blue skies
Lovely looking in every direction along here
Sun is setting over Sale Fell as we near Peter House Farm again
An excellent set of horns
Walking back along the road you get views to Skiddaw and the Ullock Pike ridge on the right, a fine end to a tough walk and in early November a decent distance in the short hours

6 thoughts on “Great Calva

    • Yeah its a great walk in and out to this one, it is sludgy after leaving the main Skiddaw Hause track, but overall I was happy with this one apart from the amount of rain that fell, but then again it made the finishing sunset so much more rewarding


  1. I think it’s always good to get out even on a poor day. Never know what the weather might deliver. Not always but if you stayed indoors every time it rained you’d miss stuff like this. Mind you, that dreadful day I spent on north Dartmoor a few years back is the exception that proves the rule!

    Liked by 1 person

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