30th January 2011

Stone Arthur to Nab Scar


Walk Overview
Time 09.00 to 14.30
Duration 5 hr 30 min
Distance 7.4 mile
Ascent 2500 ft
Walking with Jennifer
A591 - Stone Arthur - Great Rigg - Heron Pike - Nab Scar - Alcock Tarn - How Top - Grasmere - A591
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Roadside parking, A591 outside Grasmere

I've described this spot as roadside parking, but it is actually a rather long lay-by found between Grasmere and the bottom of Dunmail Raise. It is quite a popular spot, so latecomers may arrive to find it full. If this turned out to be the case the best alternative would be to try one of the car parks in Grasmere itself. It all depends on where you're going of course, but the distance this would add onto your walk is not much at all.


Route Map

What a difference from yesterdays glorious day of sunshine. And it wasn't just the lack of blue sky that was different today; it was the temperature. It isn't very often I need a hat, but the summit of Stone Arthur was as far as I got today without one.

Helm Crag, seen here just before we turned onto the road next to Greenhead Gill.

, , , and here it is; the road next to Greenhead Gill.

As we gain height, Grasmere gets smaller and more fells in the distance come into view.

Once you round the corner on Stone Arthur (sort of) you get your first glimpse of Alcock Tarn on the fellside opposite. It is there, honest.

Heading up to Great Rigg.

Great Rigg summit in front of Fairfield. We could have walked across to Fairfield and back, but for no particular reason we didn't, so I don't know why I mentioned it, but I did.

Also from Great Rigg you get this view across to Seat Sandal and Grisedale Tarn.

All that way up, and now we walk back down. As you can see, the path along here is as easy to follow as you could ever wish for.
Again, if you look carefully you'll be able to pick out Alcock Tarn.

Looking down to Rydal Beck.

Sometimes it's easy not to bother stopping for a look back, especially when you're heading down a long ridge like this. You just get fixed on where you're going and you forget that there might be something to see behind. I'm pleased we did today because the cloud was coming and going to give a constantly changing scene like this one.

Standing at the top of Erne Crag and looking across to Heron Pike.

I took this picture at the beginning of the route between Nab Scar and Alcock Tarn.

Alcock Tarn wasn't exactly at its best today, but, as long as it isn't bucketing down, this is always a great place to visit. Dare I say; somewhere that every lover of Lakeland should visit at some point on their wanderings.

The tarn was well frozen today as the scattering of stones and rocks sitting on the ice show.
The long ridge in the background is the one we'd walked on earlier. It shows Stone Arthur (bottom) and Great Rigg (top).

There are two main routes between Alcock Tarn and the valley. Today, we chose the slightly longer, twisting, turning route that takes you down to the How Top / Dove Cottage side of Grasmere.

Lunch with a view of Grasmere. Although I have to say it wasn't a long lunch as it was far too cold to hang around just for the sake of another sandwich. We had them back at the car.

Walking through the woods on route down to How Top.

On the walk through Grasmere we had a look inside the church where I took these two pictures.


David Hall -
Lake District Walks