The Old Coach Road, Threlkeld Common

Walk date – 24th January 2021

Distance – 4 miles

Weather – dry and sunny


An afternoon walk today, short in distance and for only a couple of hours but no less enjoyable for that. We had several days of sleety showers last week and at ground level the snow has gone from the valleys and any lower slopes exposed to sunlight. However, the sleet and rain at ground level fell as snow over the higher fells so the North Pennines and the higher Lakeland fells have received a fresh covering. We only had time for a short walk this afternoon so an out and back along the old Coach Road fitted the bill very nicely. Lots of other folk had the same idea too.


An out and back walk along the old Coach Road starting at the parking area at High Row to our turn round point at Mosedale Beck.

A stop on the road to Dockray for a view of the fresh covering of snow on Blencathra.

Starting out on the old Coach Road from the High Row parking area which only had one empty space left. The track is usually full of puddles which can make for a very messy walk, as can be seen today the puddles were completely iced over. Walking the grass verges was a better option today,

Great Mell Fell from the old Coach Road.

Looking back along the track. Out of shot to the left a family group had brought their collie and were giving it some ‘lie down’ training. That was the only command and was repeated over and over again so the dog must have been just a beginner.

Blencathra was a splendid sight across Threlkeld Common.

Clough Head also looked splendid as it came into view further along the track. We were in the shadow of Great Dodd along here and the temperature dropped accordingly so it turned very chilly for a while.

Further along, Lonscale Fell and Skiddaw join Blencathra on the skyline.

Clough Head, Lonscale Fell, Skiddaw and Blencathra from the old Coach Road. All of them looking really fabulous against the bright blue sky.

Clough Head from a high point above Mosedale Beck.

Below us is the deep cleft created by Mosedale Beck.

Clough Head again with Calfhow Pike just visible over on the left skyline.

Clough Head, soft clouds and clear air – a lovely combination.

Wolf Crags though are looking very chilly and uninviting.

A compare and contrast shot of Wolf Crags and Clough Head as we begin the return leg.

Great Mell Fell is still in sunlight …..

….. as is its next door neighbour Little Mell Fell. Cross Fell, the high point of the north Pennines, can be seen just to the left of it. It looked as though the Pennines had a lot more snow than the Lakeland fells.

Looking towards Watermillock Common as we return along the frozen track.

J heads down to the footbridge across Groove Beck. The Coach Road crosses the beck via a ford, just out of shot on the right, but there was a lot of very chilly water flowing across the ford today so it was best avoided.

Once across the footbridge its just a couple of strides …..

….. back to the Coach Road. The parking area at High Row is at the end of the stand of trees in the shot.

On the road across Cockley Moor from High Row with a stop for a few shots across the Aira Beck valley. The farm buildings at Dowthwaite Head are towards the bottom right of the shot.

Place Fell, on the centre skyline, just behind the lower slopes of Watermillock Common.

The snow covered ridge line of Arthur’s Pike to High Street, part of the far eastern group of fells.

Gowbarrow Fell glows as the ‘golden hour’ of daylight arrives an hour or so before the sun begins to set. The daylight is redder and softer during this period of daylight than it is when the sun is higher in the sky so everything takes on a much warmer appearance. Well, that’s it for today. The forecast is looking promising for tomorrow but we’ve had such promises before. If the forecast holds good we’ll do another walk tomorrow. Fingers crossed.