Date & Time: 16th August 2006. 12.45 pm start. ( NY 382 170 )

Location of Start : Very close to the Travellers Rest pub in Upper Glenridding, Cumbria. Uk.

Places visited : Glenridding, Little Cove, Birkhouse Moor, Hole in the Wall, Red Tarn, Catstycam, and back down past the Greenside Mine buildings.

Walk details : 6.5 mls, 2500 ft of ascent , 4 hrs 55 mins.

Walked with : Ann and the dogs.

Weather : A warm, dry day with blue skies and cloud, which at times turned a little grey.

The summit of Birkhouse Moor ~ and four Wainwrighters.

 

Despite the busy holiday crowds we were lucky enough to find an off road parking spot at the top of the village, which simplified the start of the walk and was very conveniently placed for a little light refreshment at the end too.

These were the cottages on the Greenside Road. Here we crossed to the opposite side of the valley and on past Gillside Farm camp site.

   
The delightfully named Rattlebeck Cottage . . .
. . . and the stump of a very old Oak in it's garden.

From here it was a steady climb that would last the best part of an hour and a half, till we reached Birkhouse Moor high above us. A glimpse back showed Glenridding with Place Fell behind, now clear of the trees. There was a gentle breeze and several boats were out on the lake, enjoying the good sailing conditions.

   
Road works ~ no ~ Path works.
Three men, a crowbar and a vision, but no umbrella despite the sign.

The climb up Little Cove had been paved in places before, and these guys working for Heritage Landscapes on behalf of the National Park, were busy repairing and filling in the unpaved sections. They aim for to fix about ten meters a day. Little Cove should keep them busy for a while then!

To Keep these guys in work . . . keep buying the lottery tickets . . . or contribute on-line to "Fix the Fells"

Higher up on the Birkhouse Moor path we start to get a view of St Sunday Crag.

The path is still climbing steadily as we near the wall.

The hard work nearly done as we reached flatter ground.

Below us Ullswater zig-zagged away towards Pooley Bridge.

Sheffield Pike and Hart Side in the distance.

We walked there in June and didn't see either summit due to the mist and low cloud. We had a better view of them today !

Time for a break. The dogs relax at the cairn.

Sunshine was the order of the day as we stopped for lunch and admired the view including the High Street Fells opposite.

Just as we were leaving a fellow Wainwrighter came over to claim the summit too.

He was on his way down after having completed the Helvellyn horseshoe walk. Hope you like the photo Brian !

Catstycam was our next objective so we set off along the line of the wall.

Ahead, where the Patterdale path joins the ridge, is the place affectionately known as " Hole in the Wall"

To our right our route was clear - over to Red Tarn, climb Catstycam, down the eastern ridge (facing us) to join the prominent path at it's foot,

and back down the valley. The Keppel Cove path is equally prominent under the side of Raise

It seems that this dry weather has made these mechanically engineered paths really stand out, perhaps more than was intended.

The "Hole in the Wall" and we join the crowds.

Some would stick to the high ground and go on to Striding Edge, but quite a lot would walk ahead of us on the Red Tarn path.

No problem route finding, in fact the nature of the paths and the lack of navigation skills needed on a day like today

rather detracted from the enjoyment of the walk slightly, but the grandeur of the scenery more than made up for it.

Red Tarn and the eastern face of Helvellyn

Not a person in sight ~ due to taking the picture carefully ~ but there were about thirty people who had stopped to enjoy the Tarn

( Red Tarn ? . . . more like Black Pool !)

   
Just about space for the dogs to swim without wetting anyone.
High above, the top of Helvellyn with people on the ridge.

We would leave the busy summit of Helvellyn for another day, so we set of up the Catstycam path to the col.

No Striding or Swirral Edges for us today.

There was however, a good view of Striding Edge, almost silhouetted against the afternoon sky.

As we climbed the Air Ambulance helicopter arrived and circled around the ridge.

It appeared to drop a paramedic high on the mountain and circled as he made his way along the narrow ridge path.

A 12-year-old boy was airlifted to hospital after he fell 40ft while walking on a Lake District mountain. The youngster, from Crawley, West Sussex, was with his mother on the Striding Edge path of Helvellyn when he slipped and fell on Wednesday.

Four members of the Patterdale and Penrith mountain rescue teams were lifted near to the site on the mountain by the air ambulance.

Fourteen members of two mountain rescue teams were involved in the operation which lasted for four hours. (BBC News report)

As we climbed, we did get a rather fine view of Red Tarn.

Normally it has a round appearance as viewed from the summit, but in fact it has a more elongated shape as can be seen here.

   
The path ahead up Swirral Edge . . .
. . . but our route took us up Catstycam instead.

 

The small but superb summit of Catstycam

   
Ann sitting on the summit and enjoying the view ~ don't jump !
Keppel Cove and the old reservoir's concrete dam.

A seemingly long walk down the valley took us back towards Greenside Mine.

Leaving the fells and the impressive summit of Catstycam behind.

Landscape work has tried to alleviate the worst of the scars of the old Greenside Mine complex.

There are quite a large number of houses, a Youth Hostel, several temporary marquees, with lots going on as the valley seems to be celebrating a wedding.

The last section of the path as were return to Glenridding.

The top path here is one of the many old water leats that carried streams across the hillsides to power local industry in the olden days.

- - - o o o - - -

Further references to Greenside Mine's Operation Orpheus and the Cold War Test Ban Treaty,

A technical one, Mindat.org, with details of the minerals found in the mine , but also has some interesting extra photos.

and an University Thesis from Lancaster by Anita Ghosh (2001)

 

- - - o o o - - -

Technical note: Pictures taken with a Canon IXUS 400 Digital camera.

Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.

This site best viewed with . . . a perfect car parking spot ~ next to the pub !

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Previous walk - 8th August 2006 Kidsty Pike and Red Deer on the Nab

Previous time in this area - 25th June 2006 Sheffield Pike and Hart Side with Jo and John