This walk could be called the Scope Horseshoe, as it takes in the fells above Scope Beck, which is situated deep in the Newlands Valley. Robinson and Hindscarth are the two Newlands fells that can be see from the summit of Catbells whilst looking south west. Their north east ridges look steep and interesting and have a slight mirror image resemblance.
The walk starts from Little Town, a small collection of farms and cottages just below Catbells. Passing Newlands church the walk heads for the oddly named Low High Snab. After a lung bursting steep ascent on the grass and bracken side of High Snab Bank there is a respite along the ridge. At the end of the ridge is a descent to a shallow col. Climbing towards Robinson, three increasingly tricky rock bands lie across the route. In ascent, and dry conditions, these are quite straightforward but in wet weather become slippery. Avoid descending this way in poor weather.
The first rock step is easy. The second slightly more difficult, but you'll see the key easily enough. It's the third that might make you pause at first sight as it looks much more difficult. But look carefully and the line is clearly marked on all of them by a lighter worn trail climbing gullies and short steps.
Above the rock steps, the walk to the summit of Robinson is uneventful. Following Littledale Edge and the shortcut climbing to Hindscarth summit is a pleasant stroll. Then descending the long ridge initially NNE, then north east the view outward is to the lovely Newlands valley. A pastoral patchwork dotted with farms and the occasional road. Beyond is the Vale of Keswick, backed by the Skiddaw range and Blencathra.
On Scope End the nature of the ridge changes. It narrows, undulates around, and is clad in bell heather and bilberry. Then finally it falls in a long series of short rocky steps to Low Snab. Making use of a footbridge over Newlands Beck, and the Newlands track, the car park is just a short stroll away.
At Little Town there is a small parking area beside Chapel Bridge, where the farmer allows car parking currently for a small fee.
This walk takes you to the top of the following hills: Scope End, Robinson, Red Knott, Hindscarth, High Snab Bank, and High Crags (Newlands); and includes 2 Wainwrights, 5 Birketts, 1 Marilyn, 2 Hewitts, 2 Nuttalls, and 1 HuMP.
If you need accommodation we have details of 22 properties offering rooms near the start of this walk. Here are some examples:
Walk height profile
note that gradients are usually grossly exaggerated
Leave the parking area bearing left to cross Chapel Bridge, over Newlands Beck. In a few metres turn left into the lane signposted to Newlands church. Keep right to pass the church and follow the tarmac road to Low High Snab.
At the end of the road, go through the gateway and keep left of the cottage. Continue onto a track heading into Scope Beck valley. In only 100m (110 yards) at the end of the enclosure wall on your right, turn right steeply up the fellside on a wide grassy path through the bracken. Just before reaching the crest bear left to cut the corner off.
Follow along the ridge top path as it bobs and weaves to the depression before climbing again.
The first rocky outcrop ahead is climbed quite easily on sight.
Moving on to the second, take the gully roughly middle left and climb to the top.
The third rocky step is steeper and taller, but having warmed up on the previous steps this shouldn't present any real difficulty. Tackle this step head on. Climb to the low shelf, then pick a gully again to the left and go up. Maybe a knee is useful to help you get over a step, but no more severe than that. Jessie made it look rather easy.
At the top of the steps, bear right to continue climbing mostly on eroded grass. Cairns above confirm the direction, and reaching a large cairn meander slightly left, still on a good path, to the summit of Robinson which is a cairn/windshelter on rock outcrop.
Leaving Robinson summit turn left to follow a wide path southwards to a cairn at the corner of a fence line. Do not cross the fence. Bear left to drop steeply along Littledale Edge.
There is a good view down to Honister Pass and mine workings on the side of Fleetwith Pike.
As you just start to climb again from the bottom of the col, bear left to take a path cutting off a corner to head directly for the summit of Hindscarth. From this slightly airy path there is a good view down into little Dale and Newlands.
Nearing the top keep left to the summit of Hindscarth marked with a windshelter cairn amongst a rocky mossy plateau.
Continue northwards from Hindscarth, soon passing to the right of a very large windshelter and pick up the clear path descending beyond. Drop steeply down rough zigzags. At the bottom cross open ground ahead, to climb a little again.
Keep to the path, there is no escape now until the end of the ridge. Gradually narrowing, the path travels along the east side of the ridge above High Crags, on a narrow quite airy terrace. Long slopes of grass, bracken and tongues of scree fall away rapidly on your right. The terrace only last a short distance then returns to the crest.
Now follows a delightful, meander, up, down and around this short knotted ridge. The path is easy to follow. The view ahead superb, with the fields and farms of Newlands laid out stretching as far as Keswick and Derwent Water. On a clear day Skiddaw and Blencathra form the scenery backstop.
At the far end of the ridge descend steeply clambering down many rocky steps. These tend to be short and easily negotiated, with little sense of exposure. Reaching the wall and fence, turn right to continue descending a rough track. Swing right above the buildings of Low Snab. Soon turn left to cross a footbridge over Newlands Beck and join the track on the other side.
On the track turn left to head back to Little Town. Keep left, Just above the car park a set of steps take you down to the road, but note for dogs there's an awkward stile at the bottom. Alternatively ignore the steps, carry on, keeping left to a gateway and then to the road. Turn sharp left to get back to the car park.
If you like this walk then why not try one of our other nearby walks:
|Robinson, Hindscarth and Dale Head - A Half Newlands||50m (55 yards) away|
|Catbells and the Newlands valley||2.2km (1.4 miles) away|
|Catbells||2.2km (1.4 miles) away|
|Catbells, Maiden Moor, High Spy - A Half Newlands||2.2km (1.4 miles) away|
|Causey Pike and Scar Crag||2.3km (1.5 miles) away|
|Lodore Falls, Watendlath, Grange Fell, and the Bowder Stone circular||3.4km (2.1 miles) away|
|A Short Walk to The Bowder Stone||3.4km (2.1 miles) away|
|A Short Stroll to Lodore Falls||3.6km (2.2 miles) away|
|A Short Walk From Ashness Bridge to High Seat||3.8km (2.4 miles) away|
|A Shorter Coledale Round||4.2km (2.6 miles) away|
|To Force Crag Mine - a Coledale Low Round||4.2km (2.6 miles) away|
|The Coledale Horseshoe||4.2km (2.6 miles) away|
|Knott Rigg and Ard Crags||4.3km (2.6 miles) away|
|Moss Force on Newlands Hause||4.3km (2.6 miles) away|
|Grisedale Pike and Hopegill Head||4.4km (2.7 miles) away|
|Force Crag Mine||4.4km (2.7 miles) away|
|Walla Crag and the Great Wood||4.5km (2.8 miles) away|
|Walla Crag and Bleaberry Fell from Great Wood||4.5km (2.8 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