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Helm Crag ridge

Helm Crag ridge


Postby richardkchapman » Thu Nov 03, 2011 12:27 pm

Wainwrights included on this walk: Calf Crag, Gibson Knott, Helm Crag

Date walked: 29/10/2011

Time taken: 5

Distance: 9.5 km

Ascent: 600m

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Richard, Lorraine, Robert, Sarah, Thomas, Sapphie, Gem. Forecast - low cloud, occasional rain.

When you are staying at the foot of Helm Crag you have to start your holiday by climbing it...

The weather was looking pretty miserable as we set off, but on the basis that it could only get better we set off anyway. I've not been a real fan of the new path up Helm Crag - probably just because I have such fond memories of the old way up from countless childhood trips up it - but on this occasion I quite enjoyed it - the changing views back over Grasmere as you round Jackdaw Crag were a pleasant surprise. However not much past that point we reached the cloud level, and views were done for the day.

We reached the summit ridge pretty quickly, and scaled the south summit (the 'Lion')... Patting the base of the Howitzer was as near as we came to the north summit, but if it's good enough for Wainwright it's good enough for me. As we reached the howitzer the rain started coming in sideways so we pressed on quickly to silence any suggestions from the kids that we should turn back - it's quicker to return via Gibson Knott and Calf Crag, honest...

Gibson Knott and Calf Crag summits came and went without much effort, and we found the gateposts that mark the top of the Far Easedale path easily enough despite the limited visibility. We were all feeling a little cold and miserable at this point, and had discovered the limitations of our equipment - the kids needed new gloves, and Robert needed some more supportive boots, as was quickly apparent when he went over on his ankle as we started the descent. This made the trek down the valley rather slow, and we couldn't really appreciate all the the waterfalls. We had lunch at the first relatively sheltered spot we found but it was a hurried affair as we were too cold to want to linger. The path gets flatter and easier as you descend, and a torrential downpour as we approached the end hurried us along and completed the day.

Despite the suboptimal conditions, and the twisted ankle, we all felt like it had been a worthwhile day and a good start to the holiday, and felt we had done well to get a walk in at all under the circumstances.
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richardkchapman
Walker
 
Posts: 99
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Re: Helm Crag ridge

Postby SusieThePensioner » Fri Nov 04, 2011 2:25 pm

You seen to have had a productive holiday given all the reports you've submitted! I've been able to re-live several different walks thanks to those and your photos :D

The first time we did Helm Crag, the same holiday we walked Helvellyn from Wythburn, we caught the bus to the top of Dunmail Raise and then set off up Steel Fell walking along the top coming back via Gibson Knott and Calf Crag. Our preferred route for Helm Crag was always up Far Easdale and then back along the top :lol:
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SusieThePensioner
 
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Re: Helm Crag ridge

Postby richardkchapman » Sat Nov 05, 2011 10:05 am

I can see the attraction of reversing the route to get better views ahead of you as you walk the Helm Crag ridge, but I find the descent from Helm Crag too steep to end a walk with. I'd generally pick a steep ascent followed by a gentle descent over the reverse...
richardkchapman
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Posts: 99
Grahams:1   
Hewitts:83
Wainwrights:180   
Joined: Aug 29, 2010

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