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Grisedale Pike and Hopegill Head

Grisedale Pike and Hopegill Head


Postby apearman » Tue Jan 25, 2011 11:30 pm

Wainwrights included on this walk: Grisedale Pike, Hopegill Head

Hewitts included on this walk: Grisedale Pike, Hopegill Head

Date walked: 23/01/2011

Time taken: 5.5

Distance: 13.5 km

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We set off at 09:00 on a clear morning with high cloud. After the short road section out of Braithwaite we started the climb up to Grisedale Pike. Once out of the trees we had excellent views all around to the valleys and surrounding hills and also a good view of the path to the summit.

GrisedalePike6.JPG
The path to Grisedale Pike

This was a nice ridge walk, first a grassy/muddy track becoming stony and finally rocky for the last section.

GrisedalePike9.JPG
Looking back down the Coledale Valley

GrisedalePike10.JPG
The final part of the ascent to Grisedale Pike

Great views all around from the summit, to the Solway Firth although a little hazy, and along the ridge to Hopegill Head, the next stage. There was quite a strong, cold wind on the summit so we did not hang around but continued to the small shelter a little further along the ridge. A short stop then we continued along the ridge to Hopegill Head, a very pleasant walk with little wind. A runner passed us and we did see a few other walkers but overall the place was pretty empty of people.

GrisedalePike16.JPG
From Hopegill Head towards Solway Firth

GrisedalePike18.JPG
Ridge between Grisedale Pike and Hopegill Head from the latter.

Turning south we dropped down to the col for lunch, watching the ravens gliding around and calling to each other. We continued down Coledale Valley past Force Crag Mine; here they used to mine for lead, zinc and barytes up to 1991 and the site is now a Scheduled Ancient Monument and a geological SSSI. We followed the track that paralleled Coledale Beck into Braithwaite and back to the campsite.
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Re: Grisedale Pike and Hopegill Head

Postby colgregg » Wed Jan 26, 2011 9:55 am

I've done Grisedale Pike twice and it's a great summit. both walks were done as rounds which included Eel crag. I must admit that after tackling the Pike first on my latest trip there I definitely preferred the walk up to force crag mine, to loosen up, then up to Sail and onto Eeel crag, making the Pike the last summit of the day. It seemed to knack me up for the whole day having such a steep ascent so early. Having said that I think it was the day I went down with flu so that might have been the cause.
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Re: Grisedale Pike and Hopegill Head

Postby susanmyatt » Wed Jan 26, 2011 2:48 pm

Nice report, love the photo's, I find the same as colgregg, a steep climb early on tends to take the wind out of your sails for a while :lol:
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Re: Grisedale Pike and Hopegill Head

Postby Red Peak » Wed Jan 26, 2011 2:59 pm

I love Grisedale Pike - it's like an old friend ... :D

I think to really appreciate it you have to climb it from Braithwaite, which then makes for a fantastic round including Hopegill Head, Eel Crags, Sail, Outerside and Barrow.
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Re: Grisedale Pike and Hopegill Head

Postby fedupofuserids » Wed Jan 26, 2011 7:52 pm

Grisedale Pike is nice 'out of season' but pick a weekend in Summer and it has a train of walkers climbing its ridges especially those on the Keswick Side.

I was up Hopegill Head last week and couldn't see a thing so its nice to be reminded of its views :D

Used to go caving in my younger (narrow waist-line) days and it used to be possible to abseil down from the top High Force Levels emerging from Number 3 level to the right of Force Crag, you could get into level 1 & 2 those behind the mine buildings but these are gated and you had to climb back up to lvl 3. Level 0 the one by the road is collapsed and flooded.
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Re: Grisedale Pike and Hopegill Head

Postby colgregg » Wed Jan 26, 2011 8:50 pm

Always fancied doing similar fedup. I'd like to go into the St Francis levels in Gunnerside. Theres still some of the macinery in situ there. Wouldn't mind exploring some of the caves in the Dales too. I've been part way into Long Churn but need to return with stronger light to explore further.
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Re: Grisedale Pike and Hopegill Head

Postby apearman » Thu Jan 27, 2011 12:07 am

We did consider a round including Eel Crag but were rather time limited in that we wanted to take tents down and pack our motorcycles while is was still light; we had a 120 mile ride to do after the walk. We have vowed to return to do more in this area but, preferring little congestion, will do this out of season. Would also like to visit the mine.
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