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Coledale Round: Grisedale Pike, Crag Hill & Causey Pike

Coledale Round: Grisedale Pike, Crag Hill & Causey Pike


Postby poppiesrara » Sat Mar 02, 2013 8:57 pm

Wainwrights included on this walk: Barrow, Causey Pike, Eel Crag, Grisedale Pike, Outerside, Sail, Scar Crags

Hewitts included on this walk: Causey Pike, Crag Hill (Eel Crag), Grisedale Pike, Hobcarton Crag, Sail, Scar Crags

Date walked: 28/02/2013

Time taken: 4.5

Distance: 16 km

Ascent: 1350m

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A tough & undulating classic to start the walking year, on a cloudless February afternoon – I even came out of this with an implausible little flush of sunburn!

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The popular path out of Braithwaite and straight up the north-east ridge to Grisedale Pike is steep and hard enough going for the first couple of miles – plenty of reasons to pause and admire the open views back to Skiddaw and ahead to the snow-streaked face of Crag Hill. The final ascent rise is a charming clamber up natural rock-steps though, and the rest of the day’s ascent after that comes in more manageable little bursts.
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Lake Bassenthwaite

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Grisedale Pike

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Hopegill Head from Grisedale Pike

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Over Hobcarton to the Solway Firth

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Sail & Crag Hill

Well-worn paths lead down south to Coledale Hause, but the direct route up Crag Hill from there isn’t obvious, and - with enough icy patches about and one stiff climb already in the legs - I bottled out and headed very gently up via the Grasmoor col to the broad summit plateau instead. The highest point for some way south, this has terrific uninterrupted views into the sunshine and over the Newlands fells to the whiter tops east and south.
Coledale 037.jpg
Grasmoor over Hobcarton Crag

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Barrow, Outerside & Causey Pike; Helvellyn range on horizon

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Back to Grisedale Pike

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Down Coledale to Keswick & Blencathra

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Whiteside

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Wandope

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Northern Fells from Crag Hill summit

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Newlands fells

On the route east to Sail (looking a much more impressive and distinct hill on the approach than expected) the gentle terrain quickly narrows to quite a sharp and steep ridge down and up, a good path shows the best ways but it’s rocky and interesting going still.
Coledale 063.jpg
Sail

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Crag Hill from Sail

The controversial ‘fixed’ path to Scar Crags certainly looks very odd, a zigzagging causeway raised a couple of feet above the natural ground, but time will presumably soften its harsher edges and let it blend in more, and – I’m no fan of some of the steeper descents about – there’s no denying that it’s pretty relaxing to walk. The headland spur of Causey Pike is in enticing view most of the way along the next mile or so of good ridge-walking. Jutting out into the sky with great vistas of Derwent Water, this was the perfect spot for a long rest, to gather the energy for a couple more peaks on the way down.
Coledale 066.jpg
Scar Crags & Causey Pike ridge

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Skiddaw over Outerside

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Grisedale Pike east face

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From Causey Pike: Catbells, Derwent Water, Bleaberry Fell, the Dodds

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Newlands fells, Hindscarth centre, from Causey Pike

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Helvellyn range from Causey Pike

Although not on the map, there’s a clear, often stoned (the other parts probably benefit from a bit of freeze in the ground…) path from the west end of Causey Pike to the dip at High Moss. I had casually thought of Outerside and Barrow as little twins to be tackled on the descent, but from most parts of this route it was clear that Outerside is very much the big brother of the two, towering above its neighbour and Coledale below and with quite an airy and defined peak. The descent north is rough though, knee-jarringly steep on a pretty loose and shifting path – it probably won’t be the last time this year that I feel a guilty pang of affection for that ‘scar’ leading off Sail…
Coledale 101.jpg
Skiddaw from Outerside

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Swinside & Derwent Water

Barrow, with gentle grass paths up and down and a friendly accessible nature (busy enough here even late on a February Thursday), is a good end to a testing sort of route. Tired legs at the end, but plenty of good memories… and a fond hope that it won’t be another three months before another decent walking day!
Coledale 116.jpg
Lord's Seat & Barf behind Braithwaite
Last edited by poppiesrara on Fri Jun 10, 2016 3:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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poppiesrara
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Re: Coledale Round: Grisedale Pike, Crag Hill & Causey Pike

Postby johnkaysleftleg » Sat Mar 02, 2013 9:06 pm

Great report of what looked like a stunning day. Great stuff Poppie. :thumbup:
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johnkaysleftleg
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Re: Coledale Round: Grisedale Pike, Crag Hill & Causey Pike

Postby SusieThePensioner » Sat Mar 02, 2013 10:24 pm

I really enjoyed your report and looked fantastic weather (which we also had in County Durham). I love that walk :D Great photos with some wonderful views :thumbup:
poppiesrara wrote: I bottled out and headed very gently up via the Grasmoor col to the broad summit plateau instead.

No shame in doing that, just being sensible :lol:

It's reports and photos like this that make me yearn for the hills, which I sadly can't do anymore, but do love reading them so looking forward to your next one :D
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Re: Coledale Round: Grisedale Pike, Crag Hill & Causey Pike

Postby simon-b » Sun Mar 03, 2013 9:18 pm

4.5 hours is an impressive time for that round, Poppie. Great views, excellent photos. I was walking on that range a week earlier, but from the Lorton side. Your route included every Wainwright between Whinlatter and Newlands Passes that my walks didn't! Between us we bagged all the Grasmoor - Grisedale Pike - Ard Crags range :thumbup:.
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Re: Coledale Round: Grisedale Pike, Crag Hill & Causey Pike

Postby colgregg » Sun Mar 03, 2013 11:55 pm

Great walk, Poppy. It's been an excellent few days for walking.
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Re: Coledale Round: Grisedale Pike, Crag Hill & Causey Pike

Postby poppiesrara » Mon Mar 04, 2013 2:25 pm

Thanks very much, all - it didn't feel very quick as I was painfully trudging the last miles though, Simon!
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Re: Coledale Round: Grisedale Pike, Crag Hill & Causey Pike

Postby ChrisW » Mon Mar 11, 2013 7:47 pm

Back with a cracker here P, and a splash of sunshine too....in February :shock: Wonderful photos of some lovely scenery, looks like my kind of hills....but I'd be taking two trips to get em in :lol:
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