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#52094 - 09/11/09 08:20 PM Loft Beck path.
Slogger Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/06/05
Posts: 2893
Loc: West Lancs.
Walked from Bowness Knott car park in Ennerdale, up and over Haystacks, Brandreth and Green Gable to Great Gables summit yesterday for the Remembrance Service. Around 2,000 walkers again made it. Very cold wind on top, so descended quickly afterwards to Beck Head, then down the tongue to Blacksail Hut Youth Hostel.
During this descent on a bright sunny day like yesterday (Apart from Cloud bound Great Gable) you get a very clear view of the whole of Loft Beck and above. There have been recent comments regarding difficulties with path finding here.
However the path across from Black Sail Hut and even the thin sheeptrod, both of which lead directly to the lower part of Loft Beck are clear.
Once at Black Sail Hut, I had a look from that perspective, and the start of the CORRECT path is thin but obvious and its glaringly clear that those who go wrong are obviously going down the main bigger path towards the stream. This main path does eventually swing left towards Loft Beck but occasionally loses its trace and I daresay if some walkers follow this path by mistake they could err to far to the right and end up on the tonge. However if the guidebook is read correctly, it clearly staes to ignore the stream path at Black Sail Hut.
Unfortunatly until the route gains National Trail status there will be no official waymarking, to assist the unwary.
Dave.

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#52106 - 09/11/09 11:17 PM Re: Loft Beck path. [Re: Slogger]
Reluctanttrucker Offline
Full Member

Registered: 26/09/09
Posts: 738
Loc: Earth. Usually,but not exclusi...
Originally Posted By: Slogger
Walked from Bowness Knott car park in Ennerdale, up and over Haystacks, Brandreth and Green Gable to Great Gables summit yesterday for the Remembrance Service. Around 2,000 walkers again made it. Very cold wind on top, so descended quickly afterwards to Beck Head, then down the tongue to Blacksail Hut Youth Hostel.
During this descent on a bright sunny day like yesterday (Apart from Cloud bound Great Gable) you get a very clear view of the whole of Loft Beck and above. There have been recent comments regarding difficulties with path finding here.
However the path across from Black Sail Hut and even the thin sheeptrod, both of which lead directly to the lower part of Loft Beck are clear.
Once at Black Sail Hut, I had a look from that perspective, and the start of the CORRECT path is thin but obvious and its glaringly clear that those who go wrong are obviously going down the main bigger path towards the stream. This main path does eventually swing left towards Loft Beck but occasionally loses its trace and I daresay if some walkers follow this path by mistake they could err to far to the right and end up on the tonge. However if the guidebook is read correctly, it clearly staes to ignore the stream path at Black Sail Hut.
Unfortunatly until the route gains National Trail status there will be no official waymarking, to assist the unwary.
Dave.


Maybe next time you are up that way, an pointer or sign of some description could be left at the correct waypoint so I don't get lost in June. I am gonna need all the help I can get Dave.
PLEEEEEAASE!!!!!!!!
_________________________
Next one.
June 5th 2016.
The Fifth anniversary of C2C1
Yup Mad as hatters.


Top
#52115 - 10/11/09 10:32 AM Re: Loft Beck path. [Re: Reluctanttrucker]
Slogger Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/06/05
Posts: 2893
Loc: West Lancs.
To be honest the cloud only seldom gets that low that you cant see the distinctive gully of the Loft Beck ahead to the left. All you have to do it head in the direction of its base, weaving in between the many drumlins (Smallish grass covered mounds).
Dave

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#52118 - 10/11/09 12:49 PM Re: Loft Beck path. [Re: Slogger]
walkingwounded Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/08/08
Posts: 12
Loc: lincolnshire
Hi Reluctanttrucker

Re Loft beck.......I've done it 3 times now, most recently in May this year.
I never have a problem to begin with as I always turn left immediately after the end of the Black Sail Hut building and head up to a path which contours off to the right and the foot of Loft Beck.....this is quite straightforward.

Then after a few minutes I cross the foot of Loft beck and follow the path ( now mainly steps ) up to the top....this is where I always seem to have problems !

I follow the Stedman book but in May I reached the top in mist and heavy rain....nothing new there then, but stood and concentrated hard on finding the stiles over the Brandreth fence.
I seemed to go too straight here and headed for the only stile I could see....more or less in front of me.

I wandered around for half an hour and basically got well and truly lost until I saw walkers down below about half a mile away....
I ended up coming at the Drum House from the opposite direction.

Anyway, when I do it again I'm determined not to get lost and turn more to the right at the top of Loft beck and head to the fence which should be easy....but it never is for me!

Stedman is good but I have yet to read a guide book which is clear on the route at the top of Loft beck !

Hope that's not put you off but I'm only relating my personal experiences up there.

Hopefully someone else will re-assure us on route finding at the top of Loft Beck.

Meanwhile I'll hope for a clear day up there when I do the C2C in May 2011.

Regards

Walking Wounded ( many more stories to tell re route finding on the C2C if anyone is interested ! )

Top
#52122 - 10/11/09 06:36 PM Re: Loft Beck path. [Re: Reluctanttrucker]
Stottie Offline
Full Member

Registered: 21/02/07
Posts: 568
Loc: Derbyshire, England
Originally Posted By: Reluctanttrucker
Originally Posted By: Slogger
Walked from Bowness Knott car park in Ennerdale, up and over Haystacks, Brandreth and Green Gable to Great Gables summit yesterday for the Remembrance Service. Around 2,000 walkers again made it. Very cold wind on top, so descended quickly afterwards to Beck Head, then down the tongue to Blacksail Hut Youth Hostel.
During this descent on a bright sunny day like yesterday (Apart from Cloud bound Great Gable) you get a very clear view of the whole of Loft Beck and above. There have been recent comments regarding difficulties with path finding here.
However the path across from Black Sail Hut and even the thin sheeptrod, both of which lead directly to the lower part of Loft Beck are clear.
Once at Black Sail Hut, I had a look from that perspective, and the start of the CORRECT path is thin but obvious and its glaringly clear that those who go wrong are obviously going down the main bigger path towards the stream. This main path does eventually swing left towards Loft Beck but occasionally loses its trace and I daresay if some walkers follow this path by mistake they could err to far to the right and end up on the tonge. However if the guidebook is read correctly, it clearly staes to ignore the stream path at Black Sail Hut.
Unfortunatly until the route gains National Trail status there will be no official waymarking, to assist the unwary.
Dave.


Maybe next time you are up that way, an pointer or sign of some description could be left at the correct waypoint so I don't get lost in June. I am gonna need all the help I can get Dave.
PLEEEEEAASE!!!!!!!!


I am perplexed at walkers' difficulties in this area.

Leaving Black Sail, look for a beck on your left. It's a BECK, for goodness sake, not a small and indistinct trail that could be mistaken for a sheep track. It's a major landscape feature! Switch on your eyes and look for it! Follow it to the top - there is a path of sorts, quite good enough for anyone going for a hike in the hills.

At the top, take out your route card which you carefully prepared in the comfort of your home on a table with no metal parts underneath. Read the compass bearings and distances to be walked. If you've made notes, they might well say something like "Follow contours for first x-hundred metres". Rely on your compass, properly used (NOT rested on top of your tobacco tin).

This isn't rocket science. GPS is rocket science. Take your pick! And keep your mind on the job!
_________________________
Pete

Top
#52124 - 10/11/09 06:43 PM Re: Loft Beck path. [Re: walkingwounded]
Reluctanttrucker Offline
Full Member

Registered: 26/09/09
Posts: 738
Loc: Earth. Usually,but not exclusi...
Originally Posted By: walkingwounded
Hi Reluctanttrucker

Re Loft beck.......I've done it 3 times now, most recently in May this year.
I never have a problem to begin with as I always turn left immediately after the end of the Black Sail Hut building and head up to a path which contours off to the right and the foot of Loft Beck.....this is quite straightforward.

Then after a few minutes I cross the foot of Loft beck and follow the path ( now mainly steps ) up to the top....this is where I always seem to have problems !

I follow the Stedman book but in May I reached the top in mist and heavy rain....nothing new there then, but stood and concentrated hard on finding the stiles over the Brandreth fence.
I seemed to go too straight here and headed for the only stile I could see....more or less in front of me.

I wandered around for half an hour and basically got well and truly lost until I saw walkers down below about half a mile away....
I ended up coming at the Drum House from the opposite direction.

Anyway, when I do it again I'm determined not to get lost and turn more to the right at the top of Loft beck and head to the fence which should be easy....but it never is for me!

Stedman is good but I have yet to read a guide book which is clear on the route at the top of Loft beck !

Hope that's not put you off but I'm only relating my personal experiences up there.

Hopefully someone else will re-assure us on route finding at the top of Loft Beck.

Meanwhile I'll hope for a clear day up there when I do the C2C in May 2011.

Regards

Walking Wounded ( many more stories to tell re route finding on the C2C if anyone is interested ! )


I am sure I wont bethe only one up there,,If I justhang back abitand follow someone who knows where we are going,then overtake(mirror signalfall over)while they look at the good lookin bloke coming up from the rear.
_________________________
Next one.
June 5th 2016.
The Fifth anniversary of C2C1
Yup Mad as hatters.


Top
#52129 - 10/11/09 07:49 PM Re: Loft Beck path. [Re: Reluctanttrucker]
Slogger Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/06/05
Posts: 2893
Loc: West Lancs.
At the top of Loft Beck there is a definate right turn at a cairn. There is also a fainter path going more or less straight on, this is to be ignored or you will end up heading towards Honister Crag far to the left of Drum House.
Once turned right you follow the path which takes you across a little stream dip and then up the grass slope beyond heading for the stile across the Brandreth fence (new one, by the way).
The slope path is not really worn but followable as the grass is well compressed. As Stottie says any confusion is easily sorted with a compass bearing in the general direction, PROVIDED its taken before being completely lost. If you take the bearing when, say, 200 metres too far to the left, you will end up at the fence 200 metres too far to the left.
A good technique is to 'AIM OFF'
Lets say you get to the top of the Beck and turn right, but just across the little stream dip the clag is that bad that its hard to make out the flattened grass path. Go back to the stream dip, which you will easily find on the map and take a compass bearing from there to a point on the Brandreth fence that is to the RIGHT of the where the path crosses it at the stile.
Walk on that bearing in a straight line constantly watching your compass. When you reach the fence, you now know that you are to the right of the stile. All you then have to do is follow the fence to the LEFT until you reach the stile. Thats it, with a little practise the technique of aiming off is one of the most useful tools in navigation.
Dave.

Top
#52132 - 10/11/09 09:03 PM Re: Loft Beck path. [Re: Slogger]
Stottie Offline
Full Member

Registered: 21/02/07
Posts: 568
Loc: Derbyshire, England
Quite right, Dave
If everybody adopted that technique, and tried it out at home before getting caught out in the mist with a heavy rucksack, they'd find life on the hills much easier.
The trick always is to check BEFORE you're uncertain of your whereabouts, just like you should take a drink of water BEFORE you're gasping.
So easy when you're at home, like I am now!!
_________________________
Pete

Top
#52133 - 10/11/09 09:12 PM Re: Loft Beck path. [Re: Reluctanttrucker]
bootzmanloofer Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/11/09
Posts: 38
Originally Posted By: Reluctanttrucker
Originally Posted By: walkingwounded
Hi Reluctanttrucker

Re Loft beck.......I've done it 3 times now, most recently in May this year.
I never have a problem to begin with as I always turn left immediately after the end of the Black Sail Hut building and head up to a path which contours off to the right and the foot of Loft Beck.....this is quite straightforward.

Then after a few minutes I cross the foot of Loft beck and follow the path ( now mainly steps ) up to the top....this is where I always seem to have problems !

I follow the Stedman book but in May I reached the top in mist and heavy rain....nothing new there then, but stood and concentrated hard on finding the stiles over the Brandreth fence.
I seemed to go too straight here and headed for the only stile I could see....more or less in front of me.

I wandered around for half an hour and basically got well and truly lost until I saw walkers down below about half a mile away....
I ended up coming at the Drum House from the opposite direction.

Anyway, when I do it again I'm determined not to get lost and turn more to the right at the top of Loft beck and head to the fence which should be easy....but it never is for me!

Stedman is good but I have yet to read a guide book which is clear on the route at the top of Loft beck !

Hope that's not put you off but I'm only relating my personal experiences up there.

Hopefully someone else will re-assure us on route finding at the top of Loft Beck.

Meanwhile I'll hope for a clear day up there when I do the C2C in May 2011.

Regards

Walking Wounded ( many more stories to tell re route finding on the C2C if anyone is interested ! )


I am sure I wont bethe only one up there,,If I justhang back abitand follow someone who knows where we are going,then overtake(mirror signalfall over)while they look at the good lookin bloke coming up from the rear.



Dont rely on seeing anybody up there, I walked from Honister Slate Mine to Loft Beck, on to Pillar, up Scarth Gap and over Haystacks back to Honister in about 9 hours in the middle of August this year and saw maybe 6 people!

Top
#52134 - 11/11/09 08:42 AM Re: Loft Beck path. [Re: bootzmanloofer]
Oldun Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/12/04
Posts: 1750
Loc: Renens, Vaud, Switzerland
Thinking back to my walk earlier this year I do not remember any problem finding Loft Beck and climbing up it.

Some difficulties arose afterwards though, finding my way in low cloud across that endless expanse of moor land to the head of the shale path that leads down to the old railway line. Had to keep a constant check on GPS co-ordinates on my map and following a hand held compass bearing.

Walking out into nothingness in a white out always gives an adrenalin rush, but wouldn't it be a shame if it were signposted all the way. Where would the sense of achievement be when you finally arrive at your destination after finding your own way, alone, using only your own guts, skill and determination.

I class signposted long distance walks along with nanny states and political correctness.

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