MAY 2019 – 21.5 Miles – HIGH CUP NICK & GREAT DUN FELL (NORTH PENNINES)

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Total Distance: 21.5 Miles
Highest Point: 2775 Feet
Total Realistic Time: 9 Hours

High Cup Gill (or High Cup Nick or just High Cup) is a short valley deeply incised into the Pennine scarp to the northeast of Appleby-in-Westmorland in Cumbria and within the North Pennines AONB in northern England. It is considered to be glacial in origin, ice having over-ridden the area during successive ice ages. To its southeast is Murton Fell whilst Dufton Fell is to the north.”

 – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High_Cup_Gill

“At a height of 848 metres (2,782 feet), Great Dun Fell is the second-highest mountain in England‘s Pennines, lying two miles south along the watershed from Cross Fell, its higher neighbour. Together with its smaller twin, Little Dun Fell, which reaches 842 metres (2762 feet),[1] it forms a stepping-stone for the Pennine Way on its long climb up from Dufton.”

 – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Dun_Fell

high cup dunfell
High Cup Nick and the Great Dun Fell

Got to Dufton Car Park from Morecambe at 9:45am.  Bit of an incident where google maps took us to a walking path which bro was not happy about, as it took a lot of turning to get the car back onto the road.  The car park is round the bend past a big farm building, it is a small car park which holds about 10 cars.  Has toilets and no payment required.  

We scheduled 2 walks Dufton Car Park to High Cup Nick to see the amazing view known as the Grand Canyon of the North and from Dufton Car Park to Great Dun Fell.

Went up the left side of High Cup Nick to the top end where you can see the wide view of the Nick.  It was very windy so you have to be careful to keep to the path and not too close to the edge. 

High Cup Nick - 1
Path on the left of High Cup Nick

A few people were already at the point where you get the full view.  When we got to the point the sun was out and gave us a lovely view of the Nick. 

High Cup Nick view
Famous High Cup Nick view point

After that we walked round to the other side and headed back to the car park.  We stopped for 20 mins for some lunch on a bench in a small park/playground next to the car park.

Start of walk to Great Dun Fell
Start of walk to Great Dun Fell from Dufton

Then we headed to the radar station at Great Dun Fell which was the highest point where many cyclists attempt with the smooth road surface and a challenging hill climb.  This took about 3 hours to get to over the marsh and stone path.  It was a constant walk uphill – part of the uphill climb was challenging towards the middle.    Pretty steep and gradual for a long time.  The wind was constant but the main annoyance was when it hailed, when the wind picked up in areas, it would blow the hail into your face which hurts. 

When we got closer to the weather beacon you end up on the smooth single road upward to the top.  It felt very long on the single track. 

Great Dun Fell radar station
Great Dun Fell radar station

When we got to the top, we had a quick stop for refreshments and energy snack, then a stretch and tighten the laces ready for the steep downhill trek.  It was very cold and windy so we kept it short.  We decided to take the cyclist/car route back down towards the car park as the weather worsened, heavier hail and snow.  

High Cup Nick - 15
Route back down to Dufton car park from Great Dun Fell

A much needed hot cuppa was waiting for us in the car to warm us up.  We refreshed and then headed back home.

Managed to complete it in good time and no permanent injuries.  A very good challenge and closer to the experience we will be getting in the Yorkshire 3 Peak challenge.

GENERAL EQUIPMENT

  • Apple iPhone XS (for use of OS apps for lazy mapping)
  • OS Maps app (signed up to 1 year auto renew at £19.99 to use the app with OS Explorer Map 1:25k – click here for more info)
  • Gaia Maps app (free version – I use for tracking walk)
  • Comfy walking shoes (most important)
  • Extra socks (keep the feet happy when needed)
  • Waterproof Jacket (always a must, the weather changes alot in the hills/mountains)
  • Long sleeve and/or short sleeve (for layering)
  • Neck scarf (extra warmth and protection if needed)
  • Gloves (if scrambling is required)
  • 2 litres of water
  • Flask with Hot drink (a good cuppa is always welcome)
  • ibuprofen (helping hand if you have any aches and pains)
  • Food and snacks (fuel to keep you going)

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