Fell Head

Fell Head

Fell Head is the westernmost 2,000ft summit in the Howgill Fells and commands superb views of the Lune Valley and westwards towards the Lake District.

Height (m): 640
Height (ft): 2100
Prominence (m): 86
Classification: Nuttall, Hewitt
Hill No: 2754
Grid Ref: SD649981
OS Map OL19
No. of Visits 3

Although now part of modern day Cumbria, Fell Head once resided in the far north western corner of the old West Riding of Yorkshire. It is one of five Hewitts and six Nuttalls to be found in the Howgills.

Fell Head from Arant Haw
Fell Head from Arant Haw

Fell Head is well named as it is the highest point in a complex series of ridges and subsidary summits. Depending on how you count them there are up to eight ridges; these are (clockwise from south to north-east) Long Rigg, Brown Moor, Whin’s End, Linghaw, Blake Ridge, Ulgill Rigg, Taffergill Hill and Wind Scarth. Fell Head is therefore the parent peak of Simon’s Seat, Docker Knott, Hand Lake, Linghaw, Brown Moor and Castley Knott. A saddle, Windscarth Wyke, connects Fell Head with the The Calf and the southern Howgill heights.

Fell Head from Windscarth Wyke
Fell Head from Windscarth Wyke

All these ridges are in turn divided by numerous watercourses which cut steeply into the fellside. These include Great Ulgill Beck, Fairmile Beck, Blind Gill and Crooked Ashmere Gills. Two of the most notable are Carlingill Beck and Long Rigg Beck which bound the fell to north and south respectively.

Great Ulgill and Fell Head
Great Ulgill and Fell Head

It is Little Ulgill Beck however that contains one of the finest features in the Howgills – Black Force. The cleft containing the waterfall is one of the few places in the Howgills where the underlying rock shows itself above the surface and it does so to great effect.

The view looking back down Black Force
The view looking back down Black Force

The summit of Fell Head lies just over one and a half miles from the M6 giving it the dubious distinction of being the nearest 2000ft mountain to a motorway in England. This shouldn’t deter people from visiting the summit though, it is a fine place to be and, as with many western Howgill summits, features a very fine view towards the Lake District. There also good views of the northern Howgills and south along the Lune Valley.

The summit cairn on Fell Head
The summit cairn on Fell Head

The summit is marked by a decent sized cairn, one of the best in fact in the Howgills (which to be honest isn’t saying much). A short distance to the west there is a minor depression before the slightly lower subsidary top of Fell Head End which features a rather less impressive cairn. If anything the view westwards from Fell Head End is even better than the main summit.

The cairn on Fell Head End
The cairn on Fell Head End

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