Drawing 192: Summit cairn, Harter Fell, Eskdale

Direction of view: N

Notes: The foreground rocks are clearly identifiable, adjacent to the ordnance survey column.  There is now no summit cairn.

This scene also appears on page Harter Fell 7 in The Southern Fells, page 100 of Fellwalking with a Camera, page 131 of Memoirs of a Fellwanderer, and is the 46th photograph in Fellwanderer.  The sketch and the photograph appear together in Memoirs, and AW has taken pains to draw the summit cairn accurately.  It may not be human agency that destroyed it; sometimes summit cairns are stuck by lightning.

Comments: I first looked for this location on 16th June 2013 – my 5th ascent of Harter Fell.  However, cloud obscured the Scafell range, which is in the background of the sketch.

My next visit was on 23rd November 2016, a beautifully clear winter day, with snow on the ground.  I reached the top at 3pm, after a ramble over Hard Knott and visit to Eskdale Needle (152), so I was surprised to find a large group on the summit, clad in all the right gear – and helmets!  It was a group of Jaguar Land Rover employees on a course at the Eskdale Outward Bound School.  I chatted to one of the instructors, who was very interested in my Sketchbook Project; and they all co-operated in letting me get the picture.  I was just a tiny bit too late for the best light, but a satisfactory result.  See also 336.