Lake District Directory from walkthefells.net

Grisedale Tarn

 

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The dictionary gives "a small mountain lake" as the definition of the word tarn, and if ever a Lakeland tarn fitted that description perfectly, then this is it. The tarn is surrounded by some fine mountains indeed, Fairfield, Dollywaggon Pike, Seat Sandal, and close by lies St Sunday Crag. All of which provide routes to the tarn, even if they are by varying degrees of difficulty.

Grisedale Tarn is often described to as being found at the confluence of three valleys, although one of them; Raise Beck, fits that description rather loosely. Of the other two there is no doubt. First of all there is the route up from Grasmere, next to Great Tongue, which offers an excellent walk to the tarn. The the most enjoyable, and also the longest route to the tarn however, is the walk through Grisedale, the valley from which the tarn is named. In the past, both of these valleys were linked together to form one of the many pack horse routes found in the Lake District which were used to transport goods from one valley to another. No doubt the tarn was recognised as a convenient "watering hole" for both man and beast.

 


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Grisedale tarn also forms part of the legend in which King Dunmail, the last king of Cumbria, did battle with Edmund I of England and Malcolm I MacDonald of Scotland at Dunmail Raise. Dunmail was killed in the battle and is said to be buried under the large pile of stones found at the top of the pass (where the two carriageways on the road split). Some of Dunmail's warriors are said to have escaped with his crown, and threw it into the waters of Grisedale Tarn for safekeeping. Every year the warriors are believed to return to the tarn, recover the crown and carry it down to the cairn on Dunmail Raise. There they strike the cairn with their spears and a voice is heard from deep inside the stones, saying "Not yet, not yet; wait a while my warriors."

Just below the outflow into Grisedale Beck is the Brothers Parting Stone. A memorial to John Wordsworth; William's brother. The stone marks the spot where, on September 29th 1800, William and John bade farewell to each other for, what they didn't know on that occasion, would be the last time.
John was a Commander of the East Indiaman "Earl of Abergavenny", a ship that sank of Portland on 5th February 1805; claiming the lives of almost 300 people, including William's brother. The shipwreck was so serious that it resulted in the launch of the first life boat in Weymouth in 1805. The wreck was also one of the earliest salvage attempts with a diving bell, by a Mr Braithwaite who employed the bell and gunpowder to uncover and collect the treasures. John Wordsworth's sword can be seen at Rydal Mount.
Canon Rawnsly, arranged for William's poem to be carved into the rock in the 1880s.
'Here did we stop; and here looked round
While each into himself descends,
For that last thought of parting Friends
That is not to be found.
----
Brother and friend, if verse of mine
Have power to make thy virtues known,
Here let a monumental Stone
Stand--sacred as a Shrine.'

Grisedale Tarn from the steep zig zag path down from Dollywaggon Pike.
Seat Sandal is the fell on the right of the picture and the Great Rigg section of the Fairfield horseshoe is on the left.

 

 

 

 

 

Choose a walk that includes this place
The number of walks to choose from is 31

17th April 2017 - Visiting Fairfield, a mini walking project - Walk No 4
  From Grasmere via Tongue Gill and Grisedale Hause 6.2 mile about 2700 ft
Grasmere (just ourside) - Tongue Gill - Grisedale Hause - Fairfield - Great Rigg - Stone Arthur - Grasmere
 

8th April 2017 - Visiting Fairfield, a mini walking project - Walk No 2
  From Patterdale via Grisedale 10.1 mile about 3600 ft
Patterdale - Grisedale - Grisedale Tarn - Fairfield - Cofa Pike - St Sunday Crag - Gavel Pike - Birks - Trough Head - Glenamara Park - Patterdale
 

7th April 2017 - Visiting Fairfield, a mini walking project - Walk No 1
  From Dunmail Raise via Seat Sandal 5.8 mile about 2900 ft
Dunmail Raise - Seat Sandal - Grisedale Tarn - Deepdale Hause - Cofa Pike - Fairfield - Grisedale Tarn - Raise Beck - Dunmail Raise
 

3rd December 2016
  Helvellyn to Stone Arthur 8.5 mile about 3800 ft
Swirls - Browncove Crags - Helvellyn - Swallow Scarth - Nethermost Pike - Dollywaggon Pike - Grisedale Tarn - Fairfield - Great Rigg - Stone Arthur - A591
 

29th August 2016
  Seat Sandal 5.3 mile 2200 ft
A591 - Mill Bridge - Seat Sandal south ridge - Seat Sandal - Grisedale Tarn - Grisedale Hause - Hause Moss - Tongue Gill - Mill Bridge - A591
 

5th April 2015 - Visiting the Lake District Tarns - Walk No 31
  Grisedale Tarn 5.3 mile 2300 ft
A591 - Mill Bridge - Seat Sandal south ridge - Seat Sandal - Grisedale Tarn - Grisedale Hause - Hause Moss - Hause Riggs - Little Tongue - Mill Bridge - A591
 

13th September 2014
  Raise to Dollywaggon Pike from Glenridding 11.8 mile 3800 ft
Glenridding - Greenside Road - bottom of Sticks Pass - The Chimney - Chimney - Raise - White Side - Helvellyn Lower Man - Helvellyn - Swallow Scarth - Nethermost Pike - High Pike - Dollywaggon Pike - Grisedale Tarn - Ruthwaite Lodge - Grisedale - Grisedale Bridge - Glenridding
 

24th August 2014
  Fairfield to Stone Arthur 6.4 mile 2800 ft
A591 - Mill Bridge - Tongue Gill - Grisedale Hause - Fairfield - Great Rigg - Stone Arthur - A591
 

16th February 2014
  Almost two of us on Seat Sandal 7.5 mile 2300 ft
A591 - Grasmere - A591 - Mill Bridge - Little Tongue - Hause Riggs - Hause Moss - Grisedale Hause - Seat Sandal - south ridge - Mill Bridge - A591 - Grasmere - A591
 

28th February 2013
  Seat Sandal to Stone Arthur 7 mile 3200 ft
A591 - Mill Bridge - Seat Sandal - Grisedale Hause - Fairfield - Great Rigg - Stone Arthur - Brackenwife Knotts - Tongue Gill - Mill Bridge - A591
 

11th November 2012
  Grisedale Tarn and Seat Sandal 5.3 mile 2100 ft
A591 - Mill Bridge - Tongue Gill - Little Tongue Gill - Little Tongue - Hause Moss - Grisedale Hause - Grisedale Tarn - Seat Sandal - South Ridge - Mill Bridge - A591
 

12th May 2012
  Walking the Lakeland Passes - Walk 13 - Grisedale Hause, Dunmail Raise and Deepdale Hause 20.7 mile 4800 ft
Patterdale - Grisedale - Grisedale Tarn - Tongue Gill - Grasmere - under Helm - Dunmail Raise - Wythburn Church - top of Dunmail Raise - Grisdale Tarn - Deepdale Hause - Deepdale - Deepdale Bridge - Rooking - Patterdale
 

1st October 2011
  High Hartsop Dodd to Raise 14 mile 5300 ft
Sykeside Camp Site - Hartsop Hall - High Hartsop Dodd - Little Hart Crag - Bakestones Moss - Dove Crag - Hart Crag - Fairfield - Cofa Pike - Deepdale Hause - Grisedale Tarn - Dollywaggon Pike - High Crag - Nethermost Pike - Helvellyn - Helvellyn Lower Man - Whiteside - Raise - Sticks Pass - Greenside - Nick Head - Bleabank Side - Glencoyne - Seldom Seen - Ullswater - Stybarrow Crag
 

9th July 2011
  Dunmail Raise to Alcock Tarn 8.5 mile 3400 ft
Dunmail Raise - Seat Sandal - Grisdale Tarn - Grisdale Hause - Fairfield - Great Rigg - Heron Pike - Alcock Tarn - Greenhead Gill - A591 to the top of Dunmail Raise
 

12th February 2011
  St Sunday Crag from Patterdale 9 mile 2500 ft
Patterdale - Arnison Crag - Trough Head - Birks - Gavel Pike - St Sunday Crag - Deepdale Hause - Grisedale Tarn - Ruthwaite Lodge - Grisedale - Grisedale Bridge - Patterdale
 

15th August 2010
  Dunmail Raise to Swirls via Helvellyn 5.9 mile 2900 ft
Dunmail Raise - Raise Beck - Grisedale Tarn - Dollywaggon Pike - High Crag - Nethermost Pike - Helvellyn - Browncove Crags - Helvellyn Gill - Swirls
 

15th May 2010
  St Sunday Crag and Grisedale from Patterdale 10.4 mile 3010 ft
Patterdale - Arnison Crag - Trough Head - Birks - Gavel Pike - St Sunday Crag - Deepdale Hause - Grisedale Tarn - Ruthwaite Lodge - north west path above Grisedale - road to Patterdale -
 

6th December 2008
  Walking in a winter wonderland - Helvellyn from Dunmail Raise 7.6 mile 3000 ft
Dunmail Raise - Raise Beck - Grisedale Tarn - Dollywaggon Pike - High Crag - Nethermost Pike - Helvellyn - Whelpside Gill - Birkside - Permissive Path above A591 to Dunmail Raise
 

20th June 2008
  Great Borne, Starling Dodd and Ennerdale Water 7 mile 2600 ft
Bowness - Rake Beck - Great Borne - Sca Well - Starling Dodd - Little Dodd - High Gillerthwaite - Ennerdale Water - Bowness
 

6th April 2008
  Great minds think alike - bumping into John on Fairfield 6.4 mile 3230 ft
A591 - Swan Hotel - Stone Arthur - Great Rigg - Fairfield - Grisedale Tarn - Seat Sandal - Seat Sandal's south ridge - A591
 

3rd March 2007
  A much quieter route to an almost deserted Helvellyn 7 mile 3500 ft
Wythburn - Whelpside Gill - Brownrigg Well - Helvellyn - Nethermost Pike - Dollywaggon Pike - Grisedale Tarn - Seat Sandal - Dunmail Raise - Wythburn
 

25th February 2007
  Seat Sandal once and Little Tongue twice 5.4 mile 2360 ft
A591 (Travelers Rest) - Little Tongue Gill - Hause Riggs - Grisedale Hause - Seat Sandal - South Ridge - Above the Intake Wall - Little Tongue Gill - A591 (Travelers Rest)
 

24th December 2006
  Possibly the best 7.5 mile I've ever walked - Grasmere to Fairfield 7.5 mile 2844 ft
Grasmere - A591 - Stone Arthur - Great Rigg - Fairfield - Grisedale Hause - Tongue Gill - A591 - Grasmere
 

14th October 2006
  A walk from Patterdale - Grisedale and St Sunday Crag 9.2 mile 3251 ft
Patterdale - Grisedale - Ruthwaite Lodge - Grisedale Tarn - Deepdale Hause - St Sunday Crag - Gavel Pike - Lord's Seat - Birks - Arnison Crag - Patterdale
 

8th July 2006
  Seat Sandal and Grisedale Tarn from the Travellers Rest Nr Grasmere. 5 mile 2329 ft
A591 (Travellers Rest) - Little Tongue - Grisedale Hause - Seat Sandal - A591 (Travellers Rest)
 

4th March 2006
  A long walk over nine of the Eastern fells from Patterdale. 14.4 mile 5650 ft
Patterdale - Arnison Crag - Birks - St Sunday Crag - Cofa Pike - Fairfield - Grisedale Tarn - Dollywagon Pike - Nethermost Pike - Helvellyn - Helvellyn Lower Man - White Side - Glenridding Common - Glenridding - Patterdale
 

4th October 2005
  Seat Sandal to Stone Arthur from Nr Grasmere. 7.1 mile 3255 ft
Dunmail Raise (bottom) - Tongue Gill - Grisedale Hause - Seat Sandal - Fairfield - Great Rigg - Stone Arthur - A591 - Dunmail Raise
 

12th July 2005
  A scorching day on the Eastern fells - five fells and three tarns. 11.7 mile 3989 ft
Glenridding - Birkhouse Moor - Red Tarn - Catstye Cam - Swirral Edge - Helvellyn - Nethermost Pike - Dollywaggon Pike - Grisedale Tarn - Grisedale - Lanty's Tarn - Glenridding
 

27th November 2004
  Arnison Crag to Grisedale Tarn. 9.5 mile 3169 ft
Patterdale - Arnison Crag - Birks - St Sunday Crag - Grisedale Tarn - Lanty's Tarn - Patterdale
 

25th April 2004
  A long walk from Patterdale - St Sunday Crag to Raise. 14.2 mile 5627 ft
Patterdale - St Sunday Crag - Deepdale Hause - Cofa Pike - Fairfield - Grisedale Tarn - Dollywaggon Pike - High Crag - Nethermost Pike - Helvellyn - Helvellyn Lower Man - Whiteside - Raise - Greenside Mines - Lanty's Tarn - Patterdale
 

28th March 2004
  Grisedale Tarn and Seat Sandal from Wythburn Church. 6.2 mile 2277 ft
Wythburn Church - Raise Beck - Grisedale Tarn - Grisedale Hause - Seat Sandal - Raise Beck - Wythburn Church
 



David Hall -
Lake District Walks