Walk 3668 - printer friendly version
Catstye Cam from Glenridding Walk
Author - Lou Johnson
Length - 7.0 miles / 11.4 km
Ascent - 2400 feet / 727 metres
Grade - mod/hard
Start - OS grid reference NY386169
Lat 54.5436180 + Long -2.9506040
Postcode CA11 0PD (approx. location only)
The summit of Catstye Cam offers an excellent objective for a Lake District walk. Despite its proximity to Helvellyn, few walkers visit this hill so you can have an enjoyable walk away from the masses. The summit is linked to Helvellyn by Swirral Edge and offers a grand view over Red tarn to Striding Edge.
The start is the main pay and display car park in Glenridding (grid ref. NY386169) which can be very busy on fine days and at weekends. After parking walk to the north side of the car park and turn left into Greenside Road by the Fairlight Guest House. Follow Greenside Road for two kilometres climbing steadily to reach Helvellyn Youth Hostel (grid ref. NY366174). Follow the gravel track over Swart Beck. Reaching the track to Red Tarn that goes straight ahead, bear left, and follow the path uphill past quarry tips. Stay on the main valley track with Glenridding Beck below on your left.
Stay on this track, cross Rowten Beck using the footbridge and continue to reach a junction of paths (grid ref. NY352166) after a further 800 metres. Veer left and continue to reach a disused dam (grid ref. NY346164). Do not cross the dam but keep to the left of the sheepfold and descend to cross a stream. Once across the stream follow a narrow path with a stream and the lower slopes of Catstye Cam on your right.
Find a suitable place to cross the stream and start a pathless ascent across rough ground for 150 metres to reach the base of the north-west ridge. You now have a steep climb over loose, pathless ground. Take care as although the route is not exposed some steep crags are passed. As height is gained a feint path can be followed and this leads to the summit of Catstye Cam.
The summit offers a superb panorama including Helvellyn, Striding Edge and a great view down to Glenridding. After enjoying the view descend south-east and shortly after bear left along a clear descending path across the eastern flank of Catstye Cam. The path leads down to the main path from Red Tarn. Cross two footbridges and continue down to a third footbridge (grid ref. NY363173).
Do not cross this bridge and continue on the path for 1.4 kilometres to where the path forks. Bear left on a narrower path with a wall on your left to reach a path junction. Go through the gate ahead, turn left and follow path which leads onto a road. Follow the road through the campsite back to Glenridding.