Naddle Horseshoe

James Forrest descending Hare Shaw on the Naddle Horseshoe
James Forrest descending Hare Shaw on the Naddle Horseshoe

Naddle Horseshoe Route Introduction

The Naddle Horseshoe is a classic route featured in Alfred Wainwright’s Outlying Fells of Lakeland. The original route takes in 7 outlier fells in the east of the Lake District National Park. It is a fantastic route for someone peak bagging the Outlying Fells of Lakeland.

Adventurer Nic walked this route on Saturday 18th July 2020. These were Outlier numbers 63 to 69 of 116 for Nic. Here, she explains how you can bag these outlying fells too.

Naddle Horseshoe Route Stats

Fells: Scalebarrow Knott (338m), Harper Hills (414m), Hare Shaw (503m), Nameless Summit 1427′ (435m), Nameless Summit 1380′ (435m), Hugh’s Laithes Pike (419m) and Nameless Summit 1320′ (395m).

Total Distance: 12.6km / 7.83miles

Total Ascent: 280m / 919ft

Approx Walk Time: 4 hours

Grid Reference Start: NY 528156

Naddle Horseshoe Route Report

The Lead Up

A week earlier we’d hiked a mash up of three horseshoes in the Shap Fells – the Crookdale horseshoe, the Wasdale horseshoe and the Wet Sleddale horseshoe. Next on the agenda -the Naddle Horseshoe – was not too far away from those, in the eastern Lake District. Parking is on the road junction at NY 528156 and there is room for a few cars.

The Ascent

The ascent starts from the car park, heading north along the road for a short distance before peeling off left along a wide track.

Woman walks with her horse on the path at the beginning of the Naddle Horseshoe
Woman walks with her horse on the path at the beginning of the Naddle Horseshoe

We passed a woman with a horse and a dog along this trail. The path narrowed and became grassier as it led south-west towards the first fell of the day, Scalebarrow Knott.

Summit of Scalebarrow Knott, the first fell of the Naddle Horseshoe
Summit of Scalebarrow Knott, the first fell of the Naddle Horseshoe

The Summit – Scalebarrow Knott

The summit of Scalebarrow Knott was marked with a cairn and the views were of rolling countryside, dissected by dry stone walls.

Adventurer Nic on the summit of Scalebarrow Knott
Adventurer Nic on the summit of Scalebarrow Knott

I really do love the quietness of these fells. They seem to be seldom walked. This was a sunny Saturday and we didn’t see another person for the rest of the day.

The Summit – Harper Hills

From Scalebarrow Knott, we continued over grassy terrain in a south-westerly direction towards our next summit – Harper Hills.

Adventurer Nic tapping the summit cairn of Harper Hills on the Naddle Horseshoe
Adventurer Nic tapping the summit cairn of Harper Hills on the Naddle Horseshoe

The summit of Harper Hills was clearly marked by a cairn. The views to the higher Lake District mountains became increasingly good as we approached the furthest end of the horseshoe.

The Summit – Hare Shaw

The path between Harper Hills and Hare Shaw
The path between Harper Hills and Hare Shaw

From Harper Hills we continued south-west towards the next outlying fell – Hare Shaw, following a path for most of the way.

As we got deeper into the walk the paths thinned out and we walked through long tussocky grass. At one point we passed a plot where lots of trees had been newly planted.

Newly planted trees on Hare Shaw
Newly planted trees on Hare Shaw

We reached the summit of Hare Shaw, and from here we enjoyed a great view to Selside Pike, Branstree and Harter Fell.

View towards Selside Pike from Hare Shaw
View towards Selside Pike from Hare Shaw

A small cairn marked the summit.

View from Hare Shaw
View from Hare Shaw

As we left the summit of Hare Shaw, we were given a opportunity to appreciate the remainder of the horseshoe.

James Forrest descending Hare Shaw
James Forrest descending Hare Shaw

The Summit – Nameless Summit 1427′

From Hare Shaw, we dropped down over lumpy bumpy grassy terrain to the north-west before Haweswater came into view.

Our first sighting of Haweswater on the Naddle Horseshoe
Our first sighting of Haweswater on the Naddle Horseshoe

We appreciated Kidsty Pike from this vantage point – the sharpest peak on the line of fells which also includes the bulk of High Street.

After navigating through a lot of thick bracken, we approached a wall junction.

Approaching the gate at the wall junction
Approaching the gate at the wall junction

We passed through a large gate and proceeded on towards the fourth of the outlying fells of the Naddle Horseshoe.

En route to the first of three nameless fells on the Naddle Horseshoe
En route to the first of three nameless fells on the Naddle Horseshoe

By this point I’d chewed James’s ear off incessantly about my recent trip to visit family in Lincolnshire.

James en route to the next summit
James en route to the next summit

He finally had a chance to contribute something to the conversation, whoops!

Adventurer Nic approaching the first nameless summit of the Naddle Horseshoe
Adventurer Nic approaching the first nameless summit of the Naddle Horseshoe

A small cairn marked the summit and the light was stunning by this point in the evening.

We normally nickname the nameless summits (generally based on the names of friends who have joined us on the summits) but there were just the two of us on this trip so I’ll nickname them after previous pets of mine. So the first nameless summit is hereby ‘Crixus Crag’ after my pet goldfish.

Views from the summit of the first nameless fell
View from the summit of the first nameless fell

The Summit – Nameless Summit 1380′

We tried to stay high on the ridge making our way through increasing amounts of heather and bracken.

James Forrest walking between the two nameless fells
James Forrest walking between the two nameless fells

We passed through another large gate and then progressed towards the second of the nameless fells.

Gate between the two nameless fells
Gate between the two nameless fells

The summit was marked by a small cairn. By this point, perfect fluffy clouds had formed on the bright blue sky and we were really enjoying the walk.

Adventurer Nic on the second of the nameless fells of the Naddle Horseshoe
Adventurer Nic on the second of the nameless fells of the Naddle Horseshoe

Following the earlier theme, the nickname of this fell is ‘Naevia Nab’ (after another goldfish of mine).

The Summit – Hugh’s Laithes Pike

From there we looped around to Hugh’s Laithes Pike.

James Forrest en route to Hugh's Laithes Pike
James Forrest en route to Hugh’s Laithes Pike

This summit was marked with a more established cairn.

The summit of Hugh's Laithes Pike on the Naddle Horseshoe
The summit of Hugh’s Laithes Pike on the Naddle Horseshoe

The views across Haweswater from here were wonderful.

The Summit – Nameless Summit 1320′

We then left, in long grass and bracken, in the direction of the final Wainwright Outlying Fell of the day.

James Forrest en route to the final summit of the day
James Forrest en route to the final summit of the day

The final summit of the Naddle Horseshoe was also nameless. So, following the earlier theme once more, the nickname of this fell is ‘Gannicus Gable’ (after my third and final pet goldfish).

Adventurer Nic on the final summit of the day
Adventurer Nic on the final summit of the day

Naddle Horseshoe Descent

It felt great to have got seven more Outlying Fells of Lakeland under our belts on such a fab horseshoe.

James Forrest starting the Naddle Horseshoe descent
James Forrest starting the Naddle Horseshoe descent

From the final summit we headed south over steeper terrain, avoiding the thicker vegetation and trees to the bottom track.

Reaching the bottom track
Reaching the bottom track

Once at the track, we followed it north-east, passing through a large gate before turning right at the finger post to pass through another gate and across Naddle Beck at the ford.

Trail back towards the car
Trail back towards the car

We then headed east, up a gravel stony path and through another couple of gates to rejoin the trail that we’d walked on close to the start of the walk. We took a bypass path around the right hand side of Scalebarrow Knott and back to the car.

Wrapping Up

What next? Latterbarrow and Claife Heights beckoned. These would be my next Outlying Fells, I would be continuing on alone without James.

About the Author

Photo of Adventurer Nic on a Loch in the Scottish Highlands

Adventurer Nic is a Munroist, Wainwright ‘Compleator’ and is hiking her local Outlying Fells of Lakeland in the wake of the corona virus pandemic. Let her know what you thought of this post by dropping her a comment.

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