Walking the Birketts, High Snockrigg Above Newland Hause

25th January 2020

I guess it didn't matter what the forecast was today I have been away for a couple of weeks and if I'm honest, I'd missed Lakeland. Getting back to that forecast it wasn't the best, in fact myself and Tim had organised to climb Bowfell but not in the murk, low cloud and drizzle I was presented with today, instead Tim and I will wait until the weather improves before we revisit that walk.

I didn't really have to think what to do next because Birketts High Snockrigg and Knott Rigg to Ard Crags walks had been waiting to be plucked out and given todays forecast I thought why not today.

I started with High Snockrigg first which is a simple ascent via Moss Force from the top of Newlands Hause, simple wasn't quite what I recieved encountering slippery rock so much so I turned back at one point and diverted away from the wet rock and ascended steeply via a series of grassy ledges. It's a lovely route where on a clear day you'd be hard pressed to find better views only today it seemed my views were pretty restricted but an enjoyable short walk all the same.

The Complete Lakeland Fells
By Bill Birkett

-Moss Force

A large hanging block impressivly splits the flow on the upper section.


Ascent: 1,726 Feet - 526 Metres
Birketts: High Snockrigg
Weather: Dull Low Level Cloud With Patchy Rain, Gust Over The Summits. Highs of 6°C Lows of 6°C
Parking: Car Park at the Top of Newlands Pass, Newlands Hause
Area - Group: North Western - NW/DAL
Miles: 1.25
Walking With: On My Own
Ordnance Survey: OL4
Time Taken: 55 Minutes
Route: Top of Newlands Hause - Moss Force Falls - High Snockrigg - Moss Force Falls - Top of Newlands Pass

Parking Details and Map: Car Park at the Top of Newlands Pass, Newlands Hause
Nearest Post Code: CA13 9XA
Grid Reference: NY 192 176
Notes: There is room to park up to a dozen well parked cars at the top of Newlands Pass which during peak periods can fill up quite quickly. During Winter gaining the top of the pass can be tricky as the road often freezes over both on the Buttermere side and Braithwaite side, my advice is to check the weather first. Parking is free.


Map and Photo Gallery


Cloud topped Whiteless Pike and Wandope from the top of Newlands Pass, 9.00am 6°C
After locking the car I headed straight towards Moss Force Falls which Birkett recommends to ascend alongside, it's an ascent which is new to me being more popular with tourists who stop to admire the falls from the Top of Newland Hause.

Gaining height I look back on Knott Rigg and Ard Crags.
That's walk number two which again is pretty straight forward gaining Knott Rigg, III Crag and Ard Crags before returning along the ridge the same way, but that's in a little while.

Moss Force.
With the impressive large rock that splits the upper falls.

High Snockrigg is just ahead.
There was no point taking risk no matter how impressive the falls were as the rock path alongside was simply too slippery meaning I had to go around and ascend via an alternative route, even so I had made good time reaching the top of the falls in around twenty minutes which is probably why I'm heaving like a good-un right now. That's High Snockrigg summit just ahead and all that is required to reach it is the gentle slope up ahead.

Buttermere, Mellbreak, Rannerdale Knotts and Loweswater from High Snockrigg summit.

Looking South East through the murk towards Fleetwith Pike.

Heading back towards Newlands Hause.
I'll be happy if Knott Rgg and Ard Crags remains cloud free but I think it might be wishful thinking.

Knott Rigg and Ard Crags seen over the top of Newlands Hause.
It was such a shame I didn't have much views finding it was easier to absorb my surroundings rather than photograph them. Over Buttermere Moss through the murk I did manage to spot two hardy souls making an ascent on Robinson before they disappeared into the cloud. I spotted a car parked alongside mine as I descended High Snockrigg which then prompted me to look up at the path on Knott Rigg where I spotted two walkers in ascent, no doubt our paths will cross soon.


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