walkhighlands

This board helps you to share your walking route experiences in England and Wales... or overseas.
Warning Please note that hillwalking when there is snow lying requires an ice-axe, crampons and the knowledge, experience and skill to use them correctly. Summer routes may not be viable or appropriate in winter. See winter information on our skills and safety pages for more information.

Helvellyn via Striding Edge & St Sunday Crag

Helvellyn via Striding Edge & St Sunday Crag


Postby poppiesrara » Fri Jun 28, 2013 11:52 pm

Wainwrights included on this walk: Arnison Crag, Birkhouse Moor, Birks, Dollywaggon Pike, Helvellyn, Nethermost Pike, Seat Sandal, St Sunday Crag

Hewitts included on this walk: Dollywaggon Pike, Helvellyn, High Spying How (Striding Edge), Seat Sandal, St Sunday Crag

Date walked: 26/06/2013

Time taken: 6

Distance: 19 km

Ascent: 1540m

5 people think this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).

A testing circuit of the spectacular ridges and mountains around Grisedale.

striding edge.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts


From the beautiful lower valley, even midweek there are many heading up the stoned path to Helvellyn via Hole-in-the-Wall; far fewer taking the lovely route via Birkhouse Moor, zigzagging up through the bracken to a gently-graded sweeping path. Not much of a summit itself, but a good place to view the tempting way on to Helvellyn above the sharp edges cradling Red Tarn.
Helvellyn 002.jpg
Birks from lower Grisedale

Helvellyn 004.jpg
Birkhouse Moor

Helvellyn 009.jpg
St Sunday Crag & Grisedale

Helvellyn 016.jpg
Birkhouse Moor summit

Striding Edge has a fierce reputation, but the way up to the ridge, a delightful climb over easy rock steps, would trouble no-one, and there are enough veterans shuffling comfortably along the crest to suggest that most of us should have many more years of being able to manage it. Generally the top of the ridge (in good weather) is just broad and flat enough to traverse happily for the well-balanced; short spells on the bypass paths to the side, quite eroded in places and very exposed to long drops below, were much hairier. The final steep step down off the ridge, hardly obvious and with even the easiest-looking way needing a couple of long blind strides down, is probably the hardest part – several here seemed to be looking around for the easier way they felt they must have missed… It’s a very steep 100m+ climb from there to the summit plateau, but thousands of feet have trodden a clear and decent enough walking way up. Quite a contrast to emerge onto the wide, flat summit plateau amid the crowds, but some satisfaction in having got there the hard way!
Helvellyn 022.jpg
Helvellyn over Red Tarn

Helvellyn 024.jpg
Dollywaggon & Nethermost Pikes

Helvellyn 026.jpg
Helvellyn from High Spying How

Helvellyn 032.jpg
The tricky step down from Striding Edge, a walker looking at the descent gully

Helvellyn 035.jpg
Striding Edge

Helvellyn 036.jpg
Catstye Cam from Helvellyn

Helvellyn 038.jpg
White Side and the Northern Fells over Swirral Edge

The ridge south to Dollywaggon Pike, gentle slopes over firm putting-green turf with little detours to the clifftop summits, must be about the easiest walking on such high ground imaginable, even if the apparently-possible climbs from the east look absolutely terrifying…
Helvellyn 041.jpg
Ullscarf over Thirlmere from the summit ridge

Helvellyn 045.jpg
Striding Edge

Helvellyn 049.jpg
Helvellyn & Catstye Cam from near Nethermost Pike

Helvellyn 052.jpg
Dollywaggon Pike

Helvellyn 053.jpg
St Sunday Crag over Grisedale dropping to Place Fell

Helvellyn 059.jpg
Nethermost Pike

Much harder going from there on the direct route to Seat Sandal - a very steep slope down, demanding slow tiptoe steps to hold one’s balance, a boggy col and then a hard-enough slog back up the lumpy little hill. This lonely spot, if hardly the finest of peaks, seems a world away from the masses on Helvellyn an hour or so before.
Helvellyn 070.jpg
Grasmere from Seat Sandal summit

Helvellyn 071.jpg
St Sunday Crag from Seat Sandal

Another steep descent to the brooding waters of Grisedale Tarn, and then another skirt of some marshy terrain, gets you back onto another excellent path – welcome towards the end of the day – slanting gently up to Deepdale Hause. From there it’s an easy trek up and over St Sunday Crag, much friendlier than the daunting western face it shows to much of this route. Trudge over Birks’ wet grass from there to the much more impressive mini-mountain of Arnison Crag, fabulous views of the southern tip of Ullswater and a quick descent home to finish a great circuit.
Helvellyn 074.jpg
Grisedale Tarn

Helvellyn 090.jpg
Seat Sandal

Helvellyn 101.jpg
Ullswater from north of St Sunday Crag

Helvellyn 114.jpg
Arnison Crag

Helvellyn 117.jpg
Ullswater from Arnison Crag
Last edited by poppiesrara on Sun Sep 23, 2018 4:56 pm, edited 2 times in total.
User avatar
poppiesrara
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 1165
Munros:1   
Donalds:1
Hewitts:301
Wainwrights:214   
Joined: Aug 11, 2010
Location: Leicestershire

Re: Helvellyn via Striding Edge & St Sunday Crag

Postby craighall » Sat Jun 29, 2013 9:24 am

Thanks for posting.

I'm heading down to Ullswater next weekend, though my walking schedule might be more modest !


Michael.
craighall
Walker
 
Posts: 47
Munros:10   
Grahams:1   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:7   Hewitts:4
Joined: Jun 9, 2011

Re: Helvellyn via Striding Edge & St Sunday Crag

Postby yellowbelly » Sat Jun 29, 2013 11:14 am

Good route this with super photos.
Not sure you got the exact summit of Birkhouse Moor though which is Grid Reference NY 36344 15974. See photo on http://www.stridingedge.net/Wainwright%20Fells/A-L%20fells/Birkhouse%20Moor.htm
User avatar
yellowbelly
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 126
Munros:59   Corbetts:6
Grahams:2   
Hewitts:126
Wainwrights:214   
Joined: Sep 13, 2010
Location: West Cumbria

Re: Helvellyn via Striding Edge & St Sunday Crag

Postby poppiesrara » Sat Jun 29, 2013 1:00 pm

Cheers. That had me kicking myself for a moment!, but I think I got it right... The link looks like the cairn overlooking Ullswater, which to Wainwright "appears to be the natural summit, but the prominent wall actually passes over higher ground marked by a second cairn". I hope so anyway!
User avatar
poppiesrara
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 1165
Munros:1   
Donalds:1
Hewitts:301
Wainwrights:214   
Joined: Aug 11, 2010
Location: Leicestershire

Re: Helvellyn via Striding Edge & St Sunday Crag

Postby craighall » Wed Jul 10, 2013 4:40 pm

Great report & photos !

I was in the Ullswater area at the weekend, though had to settle for the more modest Grisedale & Hayeswater reservoir, so will have to settle for great reports like this & ' the Julia Bradbury programmes ' ( in no particular order ).


Michael.
craighall
Walker
 
Posts: 47
Munros:10   
Grahams:1   Donalds:1
Sub 2000:7   Hewitts:4
Joined: Jun 9, 2011

Re: Helvellyn via Striding Edge & St Sunday Crag

Postby Ibex » Wed Jul 10, 2013 8:00 pm

Great report and photo's.
I have planned this exact walk for my first walk back in the Lakes. Though I plan to end it on Catstye Cam, rather than Birkhouse moor.

Must have been warm up there. I'm sweating just sitting down at home. Stupid heat!
User avatar
Ibex
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 456
Munros:16   Corbetts:1
Hewitts:98
Wainwrights:150   
Joined: May 30, 2012
Location: Oxfordshire

Re: Helvellyn via Striding Edge & St Sunday Crag

Postby L-Hiking » Thu Jul 11, 2013 2:09 pm

Nice report of a beaytiful area...Not sure if you are ever alone on those fells....
User avatar
L-Hiking
Walker
 
Posts: 545
Munros:60   Corbetts:7
Grahams:2   
Sub 2000:2   Hewitts:142
Wainwrights:214   
Joined: Aug 30, 2010
Location: York, North Yorkshire

Re: Helvellyn via Striding Edge & St Sunday Crag

Postby ChrisW » Thu Jul 18, 2013 9:55 pm

Just stunning P, what a great round that must have been, the photos are fantastic and I know they rarely do justice to the real thing....fantastic hike :clap:
User avatar
ChrisW
Scrambler
 
Posts: 4940
Munros:18   Corbetts:5
Grahams:3   
Sub 2000:6   
Joined: Jan 25, 2011
Location: Cochrane- Alberta - Canada

5 people think this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).



Walkhighlands community forum is now advert free

We need help to keep the site online.
Can you help support Walkhighlands and the online community by setting up a monthly donation by direct debit?



Return to Walk reports - Outside Scotland

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests