Date & Time: Easter Tuesday 10th April 2007. 10.45 am start.

Location of Start : Main Car Park, Glenridding, Ullswater, Cumbria, Uk. ( NY 386 170 )

Places visited : Rattlebeck Bridge, Little Cove, Birkhouse Moor, Hole in the Wall, Bleaberry Crags, Striding Edge, Helvellyn, Swirral Edge, Catstycam, Red Tarn Beck, Greenside Mine, Traveller's Rest.

Walk details : 8 mls, 3125 ft of ascent , 7 hrs 15 mins.

Walked with : Fourteen members of the OFC (including ourselves) plus eight canine members.

Weather : Cool and overcast with low cloud on the tops. It threatened to clear the summit at one point, but gave up and Helvellyn had cloud all day. A cold and blustery, westerly breeze in exposed places.

It was Angie's big "0" birthday the evening before . . . so cake and candles were ordered.

Nine of us dined at Oak Cottage prior to the walk the following day.

 

     
David Espin
Jo, Jill, Angie (birthday girl) Espin, Carl and Joanne (formerly an Espin)
Hilton (not an Espin) Quigley

Jo. Jill, Angie and Ann

- - - o o o - - -

On Tuesday John Paterson invited all those that were able to join him

on a walk to complete his second round, and Polly's first round of the 214 Wainwright Fells of Cumbria.

22 OFC members and friends (30% of which were from the canine section) assembled at Glenridding.

Paul, Myself, Gill, Peter, Andrew, Ann, John, Jo, Terry, Fred, Joanne, Angie and Carl.

Photo by Hilton for those who are counting heads.

Hilton's the one in the red hat by the way, as we leave the road at the start of the Little Cove path.

   
The beck crossing part way up Little Cove.
Joanne and Carl climbing last year's new path

Sunshine on the slopes of Place Fell as Angie climbs higher above Glenridding.

Looking north east along Ullswater towards the cloud covered Pennines.

   
First summit, Birkhouse Moor
A disorganised group photo.

In the background of the right hand photo, Helvellyn is well covered in cloud and Catstycam is the triangular peak Polly and John are aiming for.

Following the Birkhouse Moor wall again as we make our way over to Striding Edge.

The cloud is lifting nicely and the prospects look good for a nice afternoon.

   
"Hole in the wall" A name almost as well known as "Striding Edge"
It is where the Patterdale path crosses on it's way to Helvellyn.

It was here that we parted company, for a short while, with Paul who decided that he was not fit enough for the complete round walk including the edges, so he set off to visit Red Tarn which meant that he could take his time and enjoy his walk better.

The rest of us then set off up on the next leg of our walk . . .

Low Spying How on this end, High Spying How in the middle, and then the steep climb to Helvellyn.

This is collectively known as the "Striding Edge" route, on the southern side of the Red Tarn corrie.

There now follows a short intermission . . .

while Hilton and John return to Hole in the Wall

to collect Polly !

She had become distracted by the large number of people

and no doubt the possibility of a bite of someone's sandwich.

It wouldn't do to lose her now on her big day out !

A short while later we were on our way.

In the mean time the weather decided to change back and the cloud descended to the point that we lost the views again.

Navigation was not a problem though as there is basically only one path to follow, and the low cloud actually added atmosphere to this superb part of the walk.

   
We head out along the crest of the "Edge"
Ann picking her way carefully across damp rocks
   
   
The Robert Dixon Memorial
Overlooking Nethermost Cove.

The cast iron memorial is on the right in this shot looking back along the edge.

Looking forward, a lone figure disappears into the mist.

   
Peter climbing the high ground, Ann appearing in front.
Just before the end, there is an option to by-pass the final crag.
   
   
Terry opts for the high ground . . .
. . . as the others wait on the fell side opposite.
   
   
Once completed, there is just the climb to Helvellyn left.
Ann and Jill top out onto the summit plateau.

Striding Edge is a really interesting part of the walk, and deserves it's reputation as being a wonderful high level scramble.

It also deserves it's reputation, however, as being a potentially dangerous place.

The rocks today were slippery due to the mountain mist but there's usually a lower route that could be followed. Everyone negotiated the Edge choosing their own preferred route over, under or between the crags, and agreed that it was one of the excellent highlights of the day.

Andrew, John, Hilton, Carl and Joanne eating lunch at the summit shelter.

A cold, breezy summit greeted us at lunchtime

but fortunately a corner of the shelter became free at the right time.

We retreated into it to get out of the wind.

With all that cloud about, the sandwiches tasted a lot better than the views looked today.

 

Hilton sorting out his dog Susie, the Dalmatian, and his friends chocolate Lab, Cassie, whom he was also dog-walking today.

No time to linger in a cool place, so we continued along our way, passing the summit trig point as we went.

Everything that goes up, must come down

so we found our way to the far end of the summit plateau and started down into the mist covered Swirral Edge.

   
Ann suitably dressed for the cold conditions
Fred negotiating the loose path

Catstycam ahead as we reach the lower part of the climb down.

Swirral is a wider "Edge" than Striding Edge but it needs equal care as the path is rough and the surface loose.

No place to lose concentration.

The drops are not as steep, but the rock is just as hard if you do.

Cassie and Susie follow Ann, John and Fred down the path

Below is a grey looking Red Tarn.

Andrew and Terry on the last soft shale crag before the bottom, then we start the gentle ascent of our final peak . . .

. . . where we final John and Polly and a bottle of something bubbly to celebrate the occasion.

This is Polly's final Wainwright Summit, the last of John's second round of the 214, all done within the last 10.5 months.

A great achievement.

Angie helps celebrate by finishing of the Moet,

while Jo tries in vain to photograph Polly's group.

 

The "never work with children and animals" statement was never truer than today.

Despite putting them all on a lead I still only managed to photograph six and a half of the eight dogs that were there.

Time to go - leaving Catstycam by it's eastern ridge, back towards Ullswater and Glenridding.

   
The pitched path down towards Greenside Mine.
A parting view of Catstycam from below.

Group photo, excluding John and myself, on the footbridge above Greenside Mines.

   
There now remained just the short walk back to the pub . . .
Where Polly waited while we all ordered refreshments.

Joanne, Carl and Bailey outside the Travellers Rest.

Peter talks to Paul H after meeting up again at the pub.

Ann, Jill, Jo and Angie - two tired dogs, Bethan and Harry - plus Megan.

- - - o o o - - -

Technical note: Pictures taken with a Canon G7 Digital camera.

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

This site best viewed with . . . a cool beer to re-hydrate, and a hot chocolate to re-warm the insides.

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© RmH.2007 # Email me here # Guest book comment (main page)

Click here for John's pictures, Angie's, Andrew's, Jill's, Jo's and here for Terry's Pictures and videos

Previous walk - 8th April 2007 Grasmoor via Dove Crag Arete

A previous time up here - 16th August 2006 Birkhouse Moor, Catstycam but no "Edges"