Hartsop set in the Far Eastern Fells district just across the road, figuratively speaking, from Patterdale. Between the two villages lies Angle Tarn, its Pikes and other knotted crags form an encircling ring of high ground which in mist makes for quite an atmospheric place. The walk starts by making the short climb towards Hayeswater. Before 2014 it was used as a reservoir. During that year's summer the dam was dismantled. The footbridge near the dam was moved to beside the ford, crossing Hayswater Gill about 200m (220 yards) downstream and connecting up to the old bridleway.
Climbing the wet fellside above the tarn affords some wonderful views back down, and across to the Helvellyn range across Hartsop. Brock Crags and Angletarn Pikes are also excellent viewpoints. Dropping down the other side to Boredale Hause the route swings back towards Hartsop on part of the 'pipeline track'. The Hause is a quite complicated and spread out crossing point, but our path is easily followed and quite distinctive. The village is then an easy stroll back.
Whilst this is quite a short walk, suitable for short winter days when there is little snow about, or an ideal introduction to the area, it is surprisingly rough. The boggy nature of some paths take appreciable time and effort, and others are very rough requiring care on each footfall.
There is a word of caution that should be heeded here. During the summer months Charolais/Limousin cows and calves live in the fields on the way to the reservoir and in the Pasture Beck valley. Apparently this cross-breed of cattle can be rather aggressive. Do not approach them at all even without a dog. They are a dairy breed who spend much of the year confined to sheds and are not used to walkers being in their fields.
The car park in Hartsop is at the end of the public road. Continue through village and go through a narrow pinch point between buildings to the rough car park. A donations box is beside the gate.
If you need accommodation we have details of 12 properties offering rooms near the start of this walk. Here are some examples:
Walk height profile
note that gradients are usually grossly exaggerated
Continue through the car park, go through the gateway and onto the track past the sheep pens. Stay on the metalled track as it climbs to the cattle grid. Cross and immediately bear right to drop down on a rough track to the bridge over Hayeswater Gill.
To the right are the remains of stone pillar supports for the water wheel and launder (water chute) of the Myers Head lead mine.
Over the bridge and swing left to climb steeply around the nose of Gray Crag. Continue on the track above the fell gate. When the dam was removed a footbridge was placed beside the ford about 200m (220 yards) before reaching the tarn. You can cross Hayswater Gill on the footbridge and follow the path climbing the fell side, recommended. Or if you don't mind wet feet and really want to see the tarn up close, continue on.
The fellside is generally wet whether you cross at the footbridge, or at the outflow of the tarn. The bridleway path starts gravelled but soon ends. Ascend directly up as best you can, keep left. Below the Knott as the slope steepens find the path heading left to a gap in the wall to your left. In mist beware of going too far right and climbing The Knott.
Finding the gap just above a distinctive meeting of walls, go through and continue on the now gravelled path heading NNW below the slopes of Rest Dodd above you to the right. Traverse around the head of Prison Gill keeping to the path beside the fence.
Meeting a wall the far side of Satura Crag go through the gap.
Turn left off the main path to a narrow meandering path through the grass and boggy patches. Brock Crags are ahead with the summit cairn over the immediate skyline.
Cross the broken down wall, staying on the path, head for the cairn now visible. Just below the knoll with the cairn skirt a boggy patch on the left hand side. Trying to directly cross the peaty morass ahead will not end well!
The summit cairn of Brock Crags is soon reached. Angle Tarn will be in view to your right.
Return back to the main path and turn left to pass below the knoll marked on the OS 25K map with the
Angle Tarn will reappear in view shortly. Ahead are the Angletarn Pikes.
As the path starts to swing left below the Pikes and before climbing again a beck to the right tumbles down the fellside. To its left a narrow grassy path, not on any map - like most paths hereabouts, winds steeply upwards into the crags. Take this path, follow it skirting small crags and knolls, and using the odd grassy ramp. It gets a little faint at times but is distinct enough. There is little difficulty in heading for the highest point.
The top is made up of two rocky pikes, the southern is marginally shorter and has a small cairn. The summit is the northern top across the peaty cleft.
Below the Pikes on the west side are two paths traversing the fellside. Drop down from the summit through the minor crags, a couple of faint meandering paths may help, to pick up the higher path. Reaching it bear right, it then joins with the lower path to descend to Boredale Hause.
The last bit of the path seems to follow the bed of the river with an occasional cairn confirming the way.
Boredale Hause has a couple of oddly conspicuous manhole covers which are for the Hayeswater reservoir pipeline.
At Boredale Hause turn left then bear left to descend steeply on a well maintained track - part of the pipeline track. Away to your right is Patterdale and Glenridding.
Follow the track as the descent gradient eases and continues left around the fellside on the way back towards Hartsop. The track levels just above the fields of the valley, and eventually reaches the cascades of Angletarn Beck - the outfall of the tarn high above. An option is to take the high level path back to Hartsop by climbing a path on the left to cross the footbridge over the beck, to the gate in the wall. However, there is quite a bit more climbing to do. Our route takes the low-level path. Bear right to cross the footbridge at the bottom of the cascades and go through the gate into the lane.
Follow the lane as it becomes tarmac, past Hartsop Fold, and back to the minor road into the village. Turn left and wander back through to the car park.
If you like this walk then why not try one of our other nearby walks:
|Pasture Beck Round, from Hartsop||same start point|
|Rest Dodd and The Nab||10m (11 yards) away|
|Around Hayeswater Reservoir||14m (15 yards) away|
|The Dovedale Round: Hartsop above How, Hart Crag, High Hartsop Dodd||0.8km (0.5 miles) away|
|St Sunday Crag and Grisedale Tarn||3.3km (2.0 miles) away|
|A visit to Place Fell overlooking Ullswater||3.3km (2.0 miles) away|
|Birks and Arnison Crag||3.3km (2.0 miles) away|
|Place Fell and a stroll alongside Ullswater||3.5km (2.1 miles) away|
|Glenridding Dodd||4.6km (2.8 miles) away|
|Lanty's Tarn, Keldas, and Patterdale Circular||4.6km (2.8 miles) away|
|Lanty's Tarn, Birkhouse Moor, Red Tarn, Catstycam||4.6km (2.9 miles) away|
|Helvellyn, The Classic Ridges of Striding and Swirral Edge||4.6km (2.9 miles) away|
|White Side and Raise, from Glenridding||4.6km (2.9 miles) away|
|Glenridding Dodd, Heron Pike and Sheffield Pike||4.7km (2.9 miles) away|
|Greenside Mine and Glenridding Beck Circular Stroll||4.7km (2.9 miles) away|
|Red Screes from Kirkstone Pass||5.0km (3.1 miles) away|
Unless otherwise stated the text in this walk is the copyright of Hug Solutions Ltd trading as The Hug and the photographs are the copyright of Elizabeth Oldham. Hill data is derived from Database of British and Irish hills which is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License. Maps contains Ordnance Survey data © Crown copyright and database right 2011 and paths © OpenStreetMap Contributors,CC-BY-SA, 2011