23rd March 2011

Greenburn skyline - Helm Crag to Steel Fell


Walk Overview
Time 09.20 to 14.55
Duration 5 hr 35 min
Distance 9.4 mile
Ascent 2300 ft
Walking with Jennifer
A591 - Butharlyp Howe - Easadale Road - Helm Crag - Gibson Knott - Calf Crag - Steel Fell Tarn - Steel Fell - Cotra Breast - Helm Side - Low Mill Bridge - Goody Bridge - 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

It hadn't looked too promising at all when we left home this morning, that was until we got past Keswick and over Dunmail Raise, then it was a different story altogether. It wasn't just nice and sunny either, it was also very warm. According to the weather forecast on TV, the temperature was quite a bit higher than we can expect at this time of year.

Heading through Easedale with a view of Tarn Crag.

It didn't take long to start warming up today. By the time we got this far, Jennifer's jacket was off and I was down to short sleeves.

On the other side of Easedale, we could see a big chunk of the route we took the other week up to Easedale Tarn (out of view), Blea Rigg and Tarn Crag.

After zigzagging our way up the bottom section of Helm Crag we reached this point where Dunmail Raise suddenly comes into view.
The fell on the left is Seat Sandal and Fairfield can be seen through the cloud.

Just some of the rocks and crags around the top of Helm Crag.

The Howitzer, with Jennifer adding scale.


Gibson Knott summit.

It always feels like such a long way across here; easy enough and enjoyable, but just a long way.

A view across to Steel Fell.

Calf Crag summit.
There is a path of sorts across here, but if you have trouble finding it, just head straight across country towards the tarn. From the tarn to Steel Fell there's an easy to follow path all the way.

Unfortunately we were now in the shade for a while, but it was warm, dry and deserted so we weren't complaining.

Steel Fell Tarn. It looks much nicer with a bit of sunshine on it, , , honest.

A sort of close up showing Heron Pike, part of the valley around Grasmere and Helm Crag.


Looking northwards from the top of Steel Fell with Thirlmere in the valley and the northern fells in the far distance. Skiddaw is just and so topped with cloud.

A slightly hazy view down the ridge.

A view back up to Steel Fell. It feels much steeper than this picture makes it look.

Looking across to the sunny side of the valley.

It was here that we decided to part company for ten minutes, Jennifer found a comfortable stone to sit on while I headed off to photograph a sheepfold.

Green Burn, thankfully low enough to allow me to walk through it for a short distance.
The fell in shade is Steel Fell.

Ghyll Foot farm.

Steel Fell, seen from the fields near Ghyll Foot farm.

"ang on mister, , , , d ya wanna see what I can dee wid mi tongue"

"d ya wanna bi mi friend"
"ony if ya show as hoo t dee that trick wid ya tongue"

David Hall -
Lake District Walks