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image for Walking Route item typeScafell Pike and Scafell via Brown Tongueadd to shortlist

Walker on Scafell Pike

Walker on Scafell Pike

The mountains around Wasdale Head are arguably one of the finest mountain landscapes in Britain and grandest of all of these fine mountains are the twin peaks of Scafell and Scafell Pike. The most direct walk to these two mountains is straight up the moraine that extends west from Hollow Stones known as Brown Tongue. It's a bit of a slog but the ever-expanding views of Pikes Crag and Scafell Crag provide perfect motivation and deliver you to within striking distance of England's highest mountain. From Hollow Stones a rough but easy path avoids the crags and leads to Lingmell Col, which in turn gives access to the summit of Scafell Pike via the northwest ridge. The traditional link to Scafell was via Lord's Rake but recent massive rock falls have made this route very dangerous, experienced scramblers and climbers can do Broad Stand.

For walkers however the shortest route is via the Foxes Tarn path. This does involve a little bit of extra descent on the Eskdale side of Mickledore but the stunning wild scenery en-route will more than compensate. Descent from Scafell is via the Green How path down the west ridge, which is straightforward and has good views down the length of Wastwater.

Route Information

Time/Effort 3 out of 5
Navigation 3 out of 5
Technicality 3 out of 5
Height gain/loss (metres) 1187
OS map OS Landranger 89 or 90, OS Explorer OL6

Route Essentials

Duration: 5 - 6 hours

Miles: 6

Route Details

1. Take the permissive path past Brackenclose then cross Lingmell Gill by the footbridge. On the other side follow the path east alongside the beck to the ford at the foot of Brown Tongue. Cross the ford and climb the steep path up Brown Tongue into the corrie of Hollow Stones. From here follow the vague path lines that traverse below Pikes Crag north east to Lingmell col. From the col turn right and head south east up the northwest ridge to Scafell Pikes trig point.

2. From the summit of Scafell Pike descend the rough path south west down to Mickledore then descend south east down the gill to the base of the East Buttress of Scafell (aprox. 320m down the gill) to pick up the Foxes Tarn Path. Follow it south west up the shallow gully to the tarn, behind which take the pitched path north west up the scree to the col between Scafell and Symonds Knott. Turn left and make the short pull south west to Scafell.

3. From the summit of Scafell return (North East) to the col between Scafell and Symonds Knott, then turn left and head west down the scree. The path continues to descend west (well back from the edge of Scafell's north-facing crags) to the Burnmoor Tarn bridleway at Fence Wood. Join it and follow it north then north west to the campsite.

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