Wolf Fell

The summit cairn on Wolf Fell
The summit cairn on Wolf Fell

Where is it? Near Chipping, Lancashire

In which area of outstanding natural beauty? The Forest of Bowland

How tall is it? 1,673 feet (approx)

Write Up

Wolves don’t roam the moors of the Forest of Bowland anymore, people do, but they are few and far between.

Any English fell walker that spends any time at all researching where they aim to walk will tell you that the north west is just chock full of animal-related names of fells, hills and even mountains. We have for example Grisedale Pike where the ‘grise’ was old English for “boar” then we have Grasmoor where again the ‘gras’ was Cumbric for “Wolf” and here we have Wolf Fell where the entire name means “exceptionally boggy, peat-hag dominated area of bleakness high above the beautiful parish of Chipping”.

Wolf Fell
Path on Wolf Fell

I aim not to sound scathing in my description of this moor-peak. For although this fell was ascended on just one leg of a four-legged walk around the Bleasedale fells, after one has walked over this strange and alien landscape it is no longer possible to think of the Bleasedales as being a whole, they separate into four proud little hills, each offering character strong enough to claim its own independence. In the case of Wolf Fell it has to be said that the terrain is a bit rocky – sandstone, limestone and limestone grit, with a super-abundance of peat hags and a genuine ‘alien’ feel to it. We both commented on the other-worldly with phrases similar to ‘this is like walking on the surface of the moon, with gravity’.

Wolf fell is something of the middle-fell between the wild and windy Saddle Fell, the pert and upright Parlick and the genuinely soggy Fair Snape Fell, yet once one has walked a little distance over the peat, ash(?), sandstone, limestone and grass plains that make this fell one of the most varying territories that this author has ever strode across, one has the desire to go back one day.

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