Hull How from Low Tilberthwaite

Even though I have visited the Low Fell area above Little Langdale previously as part of my reference gathering for The Wainwrights in Colour this visit was more to explore the fell on Wainwright’s original lists- Hull How as part of my new project, The Lakeland 365. The fell is only 1339′ in height but AW considered it for inclusion as part of the Pictorial Guides but it didn’t make the final cut. This was a short walk starting in Low Tilberthwaite and the areas interesting industrial history as well as the excellent views from the summit made this an enjoyable couple of hours out on the hills.

Date walked: 9/8/18
Start: car park at Low Tilberthwaite
Parking: Low Tilberthwaite (free) GR: NY30800100
Public Transport: Unknown
Facilites: Nearest in Coniston village
Walk route: Shown below. To download GPX files or other formats for this route for free click here.

Route map for Hull How From Low Tilberthwaite by Andy Beck on

Low Tilberthwaite car park

Plenty of parking spaces at Low Tilberthwaite, two separate parks either side of Yewdale Beck, both are free but there are donation boxes nearby. This is where we began our walk on this glorious summer afternoon. From here it is simply a case of following the tarmac lane north past the cottages of Low Tilberthwaite.

Low Tilberthwaite

Pssing by Low Tilberthwaite we soon reach High Tilberthwaite.

High Tilberthwaite

The two or three houses at the end of the lane are High Tilberthwaite, on this walk we pass through the working farm and take the rough lane that you can just see to the left of the blue car.

High Tilberthwaite lane

This track which would lead all the way to Little Langdale now ascends gently through a delightful woodland. 

Fairfield from High Tilberthwaite

Once out of the wood the views open up to the east.

Ill Bell ridge

Including the distinctive Ill Bell ridge in the Far Eastern Fells.

Tilberthwaite lane

The track is firm and makes for easy walking, Low Fell being up on our left.

Harrison Stickle from near Tilberthwaite

Once the highest point of the lane is reached Harrison Stickle, one of the Langdale Pikes comes boldly into view.

Swaledale sheep

We attract the attention of a Swaledale ewe and her lambs.

Little Langdale from Low Fell quarries

Just over the rise we take an old indistinct track off to the left which passes through a gate on the fell side and ascends on to the side of the fell on a slate base. Just by gaining this little bit of height the views come into their own.

Lingmoor Fell from Low Fell

Lingmoor Fell looks totally different from this angle as it rises up behind Little Langdale Tarn.

Low Fell Disused slate quarry

By following the old quarry track we soon reach the deep gashes in the landscape of the disused slate quarries, these vast holes are now being reclaimed by nature but you can’t help but be impressed with the skills of the quarrymen of days gone by who would have toiled for years in all weathers on this high ground.

Low Fell quarry

Exploring the old quarries is interesting but should be done with great care.

Little Langdale from Low Fell quarries

The Fairfield Horseshoe from the ruins of an old quarry hut.

Fairfield range from Low Fell

There are many old walls and huts dispersed amongst the quarries, many are almost down to ground level but many such as this are remarkably intact.

Juniper Low Fell

A Juniper bush has clung on to this mound of rock, remarkable how it takes up water and nutrients.

The second quarry, as impressive as the first but this one holds a secret unknown to many walkers. By carefully descending into the depths you will find at the bottom end a cave…

Lanty Slee's cave

Almost hidden by a tree is a small dark cave, this is reputedly one of the hideouts of Lanty Slee and his illicit stash of goods. This was one of the locations that I had to find as part of the Wainwrights in Colour project.

Lanty Slee's cave sketch
Lanty Slees cave

You can step a metre or two into his den but take care, the hole behind the wall is full of murky water, gone are all signs of his illegal activities.

Holme Fell from Low Fell

Back on the open hillside there are more slate constructions, the purpose of this pillar is unclear but it does provide a good foreground to the distant Holme Fell.

Looking down into Little Langdale

Little Langdale from Low Fell

Huts such as this one look as if all they need is a roof to make them fit for purpose.

Hull How from Low Fell quarries

Our target for the day, Hull How from near Betsy Crag.

Old slate quarry Low Fell

Another old quarry, again, hard to give a sense of scale to this cavity.

4 tonner Low Fell

We soon reach the site of the current quarry activities, a couple of sheds surrounded by aging machinery. This old military 4 tonner has seen better days. I’ve done a fair number of miles in these trucks in my time…happy days.

Betsy Crag quarry

After a brief chat to the father and son who operate this site we headed on up the quarry road.

Low Fell quarry

Looking back at the sheds, a grand view they have from their workshops, well on today anyway.

herdwick sheep pair

Other locals eye us up as we head up towards Hull How.

Quarry reservoir Low Fell

As we reach the open fell we pass this small pool, the only patch of open water that we have seen so far, this is a reservoir for the quarry.

Hull How (Great Intake)

At last a good view of Hull How, a double topped summit, a mixture of rock and heather.

Langdale Pikes and Blea Tarn

Approaching the summit an aerial view of the Pikes beyond Blea Tarn.

Langdale Pikes from Great Intake

Wonderful vistas from up here which give unusual angles of fells which are so familiar.

Blake Rigg

Blake Rigg is a fell for exporation on another day. Especially as it is another of the Lakeland 365.

Langdale Pikes

The colour were starting to turn but much of the heather had succumbed to the harsh heat of summer and was looking parched.

Helvellyn from Great Intake summit

The summit of Hull How, a small neat cairn surrounded by short cropped grass.

Blake Rigg and Little Langdale

Outstanding views in many directions, a great spot for lunch.

Betsy Crag slate quarry

Looking down on the quarry where we were earlier.

Wetherlam from Hull How

Wetherlam is the dominant mountain to the south-west. 

Wetherlam from Great Intake

We left the summit and headed to the wall which we followed in the direction of Birk Fell and Wetherlam. It would be easy to continue onwards up to these tops but not for us today. Once we reached the wall coming in from the right we crossed it over a stile and turned left.

Langdale Pikes from near Great Intake

The stile can be seen in this shot and we were to follow the wall down to the right but we took one last look back at the view which had caught my eye for most of the afternoon.

Looking down to Low Tilberthwaite

 We descended towards Low Tilberthwaite using a decent path through the bracken keeping the ghyll to our right.

Low Tilberthwaite cottages

Soon we were back at the cottages of Low Tilberthwaite and the car park can be seen in the trees.

Low Tilberthwaite car park

Now back at the car park, even on a mid-week in high summer there were plenty of parking spaces.

A rather pleasant walk which stays away from the busy locations but provides plenty of interest and fabulous views, highly recommended if you need a shorter walk.

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