Saturday 30 July 2016

Guided Fell Walking in The Lake District. The Scafell Pike Circuit from Borrowdale. 29th July 2016.

Yesterday, Iain was out providing a guided walk for Donise Winter & her Daughter Leila who wanted to climb England's highest Mountain - Scafell Pike (3210 feet/978 metres). We think that the best way to do this mountain is from Seathwaite in Borrowdale and do a circuitous walk which takes in the summits to the north of Scafell Pike and also the famous Corridor  Route. All in all, distance is around 11 miles in total with 2782 feet of ascent from Seathwaite to Scafell Pike's summit.

Photo one shows the view in upper Borrowdale with the River Derwent in the foreground and Seathwaite Fell - England's wettest mountain, looming in the distance.

Photo two is taken from the bridge over Styhead Gill approximately two miles further on. Today was a completely different day from our last guided walk up here almost 3 weeks earlier when we were absolutely lashed by heavy rain for almost the entire day.  It is just as well as conditions were better for Donise & Leila's Scafell Pike ascent as otherwise we would have had to abandon the attempt - last time was no weather for a six year old, but as you can see from today's photos, the weather couldn't have been kinder to us!
After a break and "snack stop" next to picturesque Styhead Tarn, we continued up over the pass, down & across Spout Head and up to join the Corridor Route adjacent to Skew Gill.

Beyond this point, the route rises steeply for 3/4 of a mile and then levels off just before a buttress top is crossed. Then, just around the corner one finds ones-self looking into the pleasant hanging valley of Greta Gill (photo three). The Corridor Route rises gently across this valley and crosses the head of Piers Gill before rising to the col in the background (Lingmell Col). From here to the summit of Scafell Pike is no more than a half hour up a long boulder slope.

Scafell pike summit would be a nice place if it were not for the crowds that frequent the summit. Of course this is to be expected - after all it is the highest point in England!!

Unfortunately, there are always the ignorant few who have to leave their rubbish behind, so it is always a fairly messy place as well! We found one of the commonly sighted Banana peels lying around and no doubt there will be many of these plus Orange Peel too!  See this video in this Facebook post to dispel the "myth" that these fruit peels are quickly biodegraded in our climate. As lovers of our wild mountain environment, we would ask all hill-goers....please take all of your rubbish off the mountains folks - leave only footprints and absolutely nothing else- thank you!

As the weather continued to be good; and six year old Leila continued to be strong and as keen as ever, we we decided to continue on our circular route back to Seathwaite via Broad Crag & Ill Crag.

This meant heading north from Scafell Pike summit, dropping first into Broad Crag Col at the head of Little Narrowcove; and then reascending the boulder-slope to cross the shoulder connecting Broad Crag & Ill Crag.

Photo five sees Donise and daughter Leila on the shoulder of Ill Crag with nothing but descent now between here and Seathwaite; although a long descent it is!

Our final photo from this post about Guided Fell Walking in The Lake District sees Donise and Leila as we descended back to Stockley Bridge via Grains Gill in afternoon sunlight. It had been a great day, perhaps bordering on being a little too warm at times, but better this way than lashing rain and thick cloud.

We enjoyed stunning views throughout the day in all directions and Donise and Leila thoroughly enjoyed their guided walking day in The Lake District with us.

We hope that the pair have had as good a day out today with Hayley on Skiddaw. Again, it's been dry, if not a little cooler, but the views will again, have been good - which is what every fell walker wants!

Prices for our Guided Walking Days in The Lake District start at £75 per person for a minimum of two adults. Children can come along for free! Discounts are applied for larger group numbers so if you fancy getting to know some of The Lake District's mountain walks better then book Iain here. With over 45 years of walking in The Lake District Mountains, no-one knows them better; and you can be assured of a great day out. We look forward to working with you!

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