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The Fell Wall walk

This is a favourite walk for local people - up the fellside through the woods by a beck, along the fell wall under Blencathra, with beautiful views across to Clough Head, down and back through fields. It takes 40 minutes of steady walking, more if you stop to admire the views.

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Turn right outside the Horse and Farrier/left outside the Salutation. Walk through the village towards Keswick, passing St Mary’s Church; then turn right up Blease Road (signposted to the Blencathra Centre).

Walk up Blease Road. Threlkeld School is on the right hand side. About three hundred metres up Blease Road there is a car park on the right. Take the path leaving the top of the car park.

This is an attractive footpath through a small wood, beside a series of waterfalls. It is quite steep in places, but there are some wooden steps and a footbridge where you have to cross the beck.

At the top of this woodland path, go through the gate by a stone sheepfold. Turn right (east) through a five-barred gate. The path runs along the fellside, just above the fell wall, crossing a couple of stiles. To your left are the gills and ridges of Blencathra, with views right up to the summit. To your right you look down on the village and across the Glenderamackin Valley to Threlkeld Quarry and Clough Head.

When the path goes through a gate and drops to cross a beck beside a small dam, stop. The path ahead of you continues along the fell wall; also a path zig-zags up the ridge end towards Halls Fell and eventually the summit of Blencathra. A short distance to your left, beside the beck, are the ruins of some mine buildings. This small valley is the site of Threlkeld’s once lucrative lead and zinc mining industry.

Do not cross the beck. Turn right through a gate and drop down through a wood above the beck, which is on your left - again some waterfalls. At the bottom go through a gate into the farmyard of Gategill Farm. Over to your left you will see the home of the Blencathra Foxhounds.

After going through the gate into the farmyard, turn right along a track for a few yards, then right again with a farm cottage and barn on your left. Go through a gate into the field, and keep left by the hedge to where a yellow arrow points through a five-barred gate. Head towards the next field over a stone wall stile, through a field past a big tree stump and a barn. Follow the ditch downhill and over another wall stile, then cross another stile.

Now head diagonally across the field towards a group of houses. The path becomes more distinct at the far side of this field, and drops down to a gate and small footbridge across the stream - Kilnhow Beck. Over the footbridge, turn left and follow the path with the beck on your left. In recent years the Parish Council has promoted nature conservation and education measures in this area; on your right you will see an outdoor classroom. The path leads to the village just by the pubs.

The path from Gategill Farm to Kiln How can be boggy in wet weather, which has been known to occur in Threlkeld occasionally. To avoid this, after the gate into the farmyard at the bottom of the track through the woods, turn right for a few yards, then follow the farm track to the left of the wall, with a bungalow and a model of a fox a few yards down it on your left. This track goes down hill to a tarmac road. Turn right here and this heads into the village.

Near this hut, turn right off the railway track through a gate, and then right again after a few metres and another gate. Follow the rough road up the hill to where the road joins a more substantial tarmac road at the hamlet of Wescoe. (The poet W H Auden stayed here in the 1920’s and 30’s - his family had a holiday home at Far Wescoe, a cottage about two hundred metres to the left of the road junction).

Almost opposite the top of the rough road up which you have come is a gate. Go through this along a signposted footpath through fields, across a few stiles and through some gates, passing the large house Ings (former home of Colin Welland, film actor, writer and director) on your right. Beyond Ings the path is reasonably distinct, with several stiles and gates. It emerges through a gate at some cottages (Town Head). Turn right down the hill past Threlkeld School on your left. At the bottom of the hill turn left into the village, past St Mary’s Church to the two pubs.

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