Cam Rakes

Cam Rakes (Oughtershaw Common)

Cam Rakes is a fell in the Yorkshire Dales that straddles the Pennine watershed between the gathering grounds of the Wharfe and the Ribble.

Height (m): 503
Height (ft): 1650
Prominence (m): 113
Classification: Dewey, HuMP
Hill No: 3627
Grid Ref: SD839809
OS Map OL2
No. of Visits 2

Also known as Oughtershaw Common or Cocklee Fell, Cam Rakes has something of an identity crisis. The additional name of Low Green Field Lings given to the Ordnance Survey column near the summit only adds to the confusion. The fact that there is no settled name for the fell is perhaps indicative of the fact that it is one of the lesser known hills in the Dales.

Cam Rakes from Woldside with Ingleborough in the distance
Cam Rakes from Woldside with Ingleborough in the distance

The ‘easiest’ approaches are from Oughtershaw to the east or Cam Houses to the north. Using one for ascent and one for descent helps create a good circular route. A broken wall and a fence run parallel across much of the crest of the fell which makes route find extremely simple. Underfoot it is a different matter with the three metre wide strip between wall and fence a breeding ground for tussocks and bogs.

Descending east between the wall and fence
Descending east between the wall and fence

The fell is bounded to the north by Oughtershaw Beck and the infant Cam Beck and by Greenfield Beck to the south. The meeting of Oughtershaw Beck and Greenfield Beck at Beckermonds sees the birth of the River Wharfe and the start of Langstrothdale.

The small pile of stones marking the summit of Cam Rakes
The small pile of stones marking the summit of Cam Rakes

Most of the southern flank of the fell is covered in thick plantations and any attempt to approach Cam Rakes from that direction would be ill advised. Although the trees reach the crest of the fell to the east and west of the summit, the summit area itself is heather and moorland grass.

The Low Green Field Lings trig point looking towards Ingleborough and Whernside
The Low Green Field Lings trig point looking towards Ingleborough and Whernside

The summit is a small pile of stones below a tiny rise in the fence. Fifty metres or so to the west is the Ordnance Survey trig point which is 2m lower than the summit. Though the fell is surrounded by higher ground to the north, east and south the view is surprisingly good with Ingleborough and Whernside in particular making a welcome appearance.

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