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Walking Guide and Walks

Helvellyn is the third highest peak in the Lake District rising to 950 metres above sea level. One of the most popular summits in England and Wales, the summit sees a steady stream of walkers throughout the year. The reason for its popularity is Striding Edge - a narrow ar&ecic;te that offers some scrambling for walkers heading for the summit. However, for some this is a challenge too far.

Most walkers approach from the east with the usual approach from Glenridding on the shores of Ullswater where the route takes you over Birkhouse Moor and on via Striding Edge to the summit. To complete the horseshoe the return is via the less challenging Swirral Edge with an optional ascent of Catstye Cam before descending back via Red Tarn to the start.

From the west paths from Wythburn and Swirls offer an alternative approach over less interesting terrain. These paths can be combined in a circular walk and for much of the route avoids the 'crowds' that can be encountered on the Striding Edge route.

A few words of warning. Under ice and snow Striding Edge needs to be treated with respect and appropriate equipment used. In addition, the east facing crags on Helvellyn suffer from cornices in snow so don't go too near the edge!

List of walks

★ GPS file available   ☩ Route profile

2327★☩Red Tarn & Birkhouse Moor from Glenriddingmoderate6.00
1235★☩Red Tarn & Grisedalemoderate7.00
1247★☩Helvellyn & Raise from Swirlsmod/hard7.00
3668★☩Catstye Cam from Glenriddingmod/hard7.00
1229★☩Helvellyn & Dollywaggon Pike from Wythburnmoderate8.00
2025★☩Helvellyn & Wythburn from Swirlsmod/hard8.50
1156★☩Helvellyn via Striding Edgehard9.50
1710★☩Glenridding, St. Sunday Crag & Helvellynhard11.50
1520★☩Helvellyn & Fairfield Horseshoe from Patterdalevery hard13.00

Table of summits in the Helvellyn Group

12Helvellyn950 / 3117Lake District
27Catstye Cam890 / 2920Lake District
38Dollywaggon Pike858 / 2815Lake District
104Seat Sandal736 / 2415Lake District


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