Elterwater - Grasmere
Day two, in keeping with the more mountainous surroundings of Great Langdale, tackles the main bulk of the ridge all the way up to Blea Rigg. The towering rock face of Pavey Ark can be seen from the route as it reaches its high point. Its buttresses and gullies hold numerous top quality summer and winter climbs. This is a glorious walk with a real mountain top feel to it. There is a bit of a steep pull out of the valley to gain the crest of the ridge and there will be a need to keep an eye on the map and use a compass to check directions as every now and again there are variants to the path. However all this muscle and brain work will be rewarded because the views and the surroundings are truly sublime!
1. Outside the Langdale Hotel turn left onto the main valley road and follow it for 250m to a path on the right. Join this path and follow it up through the fields to join the minor road at Walthwaite. Turn right and follow the road for 50m to a path on the left. This path follows a sneaky route cutting across the steep fellside to gain the main ridge on the north side of Langdale at Dow Bank.
2. At a broad col on the main ridge the Walthwaite path crosses the ridge path. At the junction turn left onto the main ridge path. The path weaves its way along the broad crest, passing Lang How, Swinescar Pike, Little Castle How, Great Castle How along the way until after about 5km it reaches the top of the Easedale Path (at GR NY291084). There are a number of variant paths along the way that can be confusing but problems can be avoided by maintaining a general north west direction and avoiding dropping off the crest.
3. There are superb views all along the ridge path but some of the best of the Langdale Pikes can be had just before you drop down into Easedale. The Easedale Path can be tricky to locate so explore and check the descent direction with a compass if you have any doubts. The path is not over-used but it is distinct on the ground. It leads down first past the shapely bump of Belles Knott, and then into the upper reaches of Easedale. Continue along the path to join the bridleway at the mouth of Easdale Tarn.
4. The bridleway leads easily east from Easedale Tarn carrying you above the waterfalls of Sourmilk Gill and down to the pasture of lower Easedale. Continue along the bridleway to then join Easedale Road. Follow the road into Grasmere and return to the Wordsworth Hotel to reflect on all you have discovered on this two day exploration. Sit back with a golden, foam topped pint of Jennings Ale and sample the carefully balanced flavours of the classic Jennings Cumberland Ale.
|Time/Effort:||3 out of 5|
|Navigation:||2 out of 5|
|Technicality:||3 out of 5|
|Height gain/loss (metres):||630metres (2,067feet)|
|OS map:||OS Landranger 90, OS Explorer OL 4 & 5|
- Start point: NY 321052 (near Elterwater)
- End point: NY 336074