There aren’t many takers. At 285m Scout Hill is the 1795th tallest in England. http://www.themountainguide.co.uk. Not exactly inspiring. But I know a hill when I see one and this one was a prominent feature on the northern horizon when we were last up on Hutton Roof. It can be seen towering, or more accurately peeping, over Farleton Fell in the photo below taken on that day. I did have to look it up later to identify it as Scout Hill The seed was sown.
Encouraged by last week’s walk with Sir Hugh I plotted an easy route in the Lupton area to include Scout Hill. He thinks he has been up it before, and although I fully believe him details are very vague. He is keen to test his improving health by another easy ascent, surely it can’t make my hip any worse.
Parking is complicated by road works, water pipe installations. It takes me some time to orientate myself amongst the little lanes and the busy A65 flying past with lay-bys full of cars. By then we are through lush green fields and above the lively Lupton Beck. Farleton Fell is there above us, and it remains that way all day. Sir Hugh recognises the lovely footbridge over the waters, and we come out by the Plough pub. What I thought would be an easy ramble by the beck took us much longer than envisaged. We haven’t come far, and perhaps we should have retired to the pub for lunch.
Now up the lane to Crabtree Farm, quite steep in parts. They have diversified into clay pigeon shooting and are busy constructing a holiday park with those ubiquitous Gypsy Caravans, more like road menders huts quips Sir Hugh when he gets his breath back from the ascent. On we go, quite steep in parts. My hip is hurting, but I don’t say anything, there is no turning back. It is a delightful lane.
Once in the open we are on the slopes of Scout Hill, but there is no sight of its summit Trig. It won’t take us long after leaving the wallside right of way, climbing through the gorse to reach the summit. Should I just nip up and down quickly leaving Sir Hugh down here? No he is having none of that. Should I just let him nip up and down whilst I study the abundant fungi? We plod on. It is a strange fell with bits of ancient walls and little rivulets appearing from nowhere. There is still no sign of the summit, there are supposed to be communication masts up there. It is getting serious when compass bearings are taken and followed.
But what’s this? Another wall and descent between us and our rapidly receding trig point. I’m secretly hoping we can’t get across, and we can call the whole thing off.
But no, we can squeeze through a gated gap and the summit is ours. It turns out to be a good viewpoint particularly to the hills to the east – Gragareth et al. If only it was a bit brighter. The Lakes are in clag, and we have some debate as to which is Arnside Knott, Sir Hugh’s local fell. The communication towers are largely ignored.
We squeeze back through the gate and head towards a prominent stone. Standing or not? A good lunch spot nonetheless.
Back on the right of way we waste no time abandoning it for an attractive path which at the far end proclaims ‘Private No Right of Way’. We are now on metalled lanes wandering across the hillsides, some barely drivable and going we know not where. It’s all downhill from here. Coming across the first person we have seen all day he promptly turns around and walks past us with a brief nod. It’s a strange area. Farelton Fell looms ahead of us. I am glad when the roadworks come into sight and the little car is there.
Felt I had bitten off more than I could happily chew today, just don’t always believe the map, the summit may have moved.
Today was tagged under The Lake District and nearby Lancashire, need a new tag for Cumbria whose borders wander around in this area.
Sir Hugh’s post will appear in due course.