logo Walking Britain

Lake District Walk
Red Tarn & Birkhouse Moor from Glenridding

Nat Park - Lake District - Lake District Eastern Fells

County/Area - Cumbria

Author - Lou Johnson

Length - 6.0 miles / 9.8 km    Ascent - 2000 feet / 606 metres

Time - 5 hours 0 minutes    Grade - moderate

Start - OS grid reference NY386169
Lat 54.543618 // Long -2.950604
Postcode CA11 0PD (approx. location only)
what3words start brighter.honeybees.values

Maps Ordnance Survey Logo Anquet Maps Logo

Ordnance Survey Explorer OL5Sheet Map1:25kBUY
Anquet OS Explorer OL5Digital Map1:25kBUY

It is recommended you take a map. The preferred scale is 1:25k.

Walk Route Description

Photo from the walk - Red Tarn & Birkhouse Moor from Glenridding

Visiting one of the major summits of the Lake District is often the objective of a walk. However lower-level walks can often offer equally scenic walking as in the case of this route to Red tarn below Helvellyn. The walk offers some views of the high peaks, excellent walking and immersion in beautiful Lakeland scenery all typical of many Lake District walks.

The start is Glenridding on the shores of Ullswater where a large pay and display car park is located on the west side of the A592 (grid ref. NY386169). After parking exit the car park and turn right over Glenridding Beck. Turn first right in front of the shop following the bridleway to Helvellyn. Continue along the bridleway bearing right at the first junction towards Gillside. The bridleway continues with the Beck on your right-hand past a campsite to reach a lane (grid ref. NY386169).

Turn left, walking uphill to Helvellyn via Miresbeck. Ignore the path on the right to Greenside and continue to a path junction (grid ref. NY377167). Turn right and continue climbing to a stile (grid ref. NY376166). Turn right and, with the intake wall on your right, continue up Glenridding. The path ahead is well trodden and, after a level section by the intake wall, turn southwest and climb steadily past a sheepfold (grid ref. NY357168) and up beside Red Tarn Beck to Red Tarn (grid ref. NY350154).

After enjoying the magnificent surroundings of Red Tarn which includes Catstye Cam, Helvellyn, Swirral Edge and Striding Edge take the path heading east from the Tarn out-flow to the Hole-in-the-Wall (grid ref. NY359155). Turn left along the wall (wall to your right) and continue straight ahead to reach the cairn on Birkhouse Moor (grid ref. NY365164) from where you can enjoy a wide panorama of the surrounding fells and much of the route you have just undertaken.

To continue, retrace your steps back to the main path and turn left, again keeping the wall on your right. After about 600 metres beside the wall turn left at a large cairn to descend quite steeply into Little Cove where you re-join the outward route at a stile (grid ref. NY376166). From here retrace your steps back to the start.



Other walks nearby

Walk 1156 Helvellyn via Striding and Swirral Edges - hard - 9.5 miles/15.4 km

Walk 1235 Red Tarn & Grisedale from Glenridding - moderate - 7.0 miles/11.4 km

Walk 1710 St. Sunday Crag & Helvellyn from Glenridding - hard - 11.5 miles/18.7 km

Walk 3232 Glenridding Dodd & Sheffield Pike from Glenridding - easy/mod - 4.5 miles/7.3 km

Walk 3668 Catstye Cam from Glenridding - mod/hard - 7.0 miles/11.4 km

Walk 1230 Birks & Arnison Crag from Patterdale - moderate - 5.5 miles/8.9 km

Walk 1520 Helvellyn & Fairfield Horseshoe from Patterdale - very hard - 13.0 miles/21.1 km

Walk 2047 Place Fell from Patterdale - moderate - 7.5 miles/12.2 km

Walk 2425 Circuit of Boredale from Patterdale - mod/hard - 11.5 miles/18.7 km

Walk 3670 Angle Tarn and Hayeswater from Patterdale - moderate - 8.3 miles/13.5 km

Recommended Books & eBooks

Walking the Lake District Fells - Buttermere

Walking the Lake District Fells - ButtermerePart of the Walking the Lake District Fells series, this guidebook covers a wide range of routes to 32 Lakeland summits that can be climbed from the Buttermere, Lorton and Newlands valleys, with highlights including Haystacks, High Stile, Grasmoor and the fells of the Coledale Round. Suggestions for longer ridge routes are also included.
More information

Great Mountain Days in the Lake District

Great Mountain Days in the Lake DistrictAn inspirational guidebook to 50 challenging walks on the high fells of the Lake District. The graded circular routes, between 4 and 14 miles in length, cover classic Lakeland summits like Fairfield, Scafell Pike, Great Gable and Blencathra, to the lesser-known High Spy, King's How and Brund Fell.
More information

The National Trails

The National TrailsThis inspirational guidebook looks at each of the UK's 19 National Trails, with information that allows ease of comparison and contrast, inspiring you to find out more and to take up a long-distance challenge. Some Trails are short and easy, others much longer, many have strong themes - they may follow a coastline, or traverse ranges of hills.
More information

Social Media

Follow Walking Britain for the latest news.

Facebook Twitter

Mountain Weather

Stay safe on the mountains with detailed weather forecasts - for iOS devices or for Android devices.

Digital Mapping Guide

Digital Mapping Guide - a simple guide of how to start using digital mapping. Includes advice and useful links.