Up on Lingmoor I’m eager to see the fair-ground wall that snakes up to Brown How with its heather habitat. Brown How is the high-point of the ridge: a dome of two halves, grass and heather. Like a dome-shaped pudding of distinct flavours. That heather flank looks like chocolate. The wobbly stile has been fixed, hurray. Beautiful late September weather, the summer we didn’t have. Now for more stunning views and wading thigh-deep in heather to avoid the rock-descent by barbed wire fence!
Rucksacks off to squeeze through the rocks at Fat Man’s Agony before the climb to Side Pike. Superb views from the top where clouds of midges swarmed. Looking toward The Band and Bowfell it seemed only a landscape of screes, crags and inaccessible places. We liked the sense of there being no one on the fells, but knew it was illusory.
Images show heather on Lingmoor Fell, with a mix of deer grass. And finally a view from SIde Pike, looking toward Bowfell and The Band and down into Oxendale and MIckleden.
Walking the fells in autumn, you can see where bog asphodel colours the boggy ground long before you reach it. I love it en masse, and the detail of each plant. As we came down off Side Pike the sun shot through the plant, lighting the fell-side green-gold. Spectacular. Its leaf blades turn mellow gold and the seed-heads are dark flame.
The fell-side draining down to Bleamoss Beck was saturated with sphagnum moss and full of sundew. The midges of Side Pike would keep them going for a while longer, until the weather grew colder.
Jan Wiltshire is a writer and naturalist living in Cumbria. She take photographs.