5th January 2013

Up in the cloud on Catstye Cam and Birkhouse Moor


Walk Overview
Date 5th January 2013
Time 09.40 to 13.25
Duration 4 hr 45 min
Distance 7.2 mile
Ascent 2500 ft
Walking with On my own
Glenridding - Greenside Road - Greenside Mines - Red Tarn Beck path - Catstye Cam - Red Tarn - Birkhouse Moor - Mires Beck path - Glenridding
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Car park, Glenridding

Found in the centre of Glenridding, this car park fills up very quickly indeed. Not just because of the amount of walkers heading onto the Helvellyn fells, but with people just wanting to have a walk around the village. Arriving after mid morning during the summer months would be a bit of a hit and miss situation as far as getting a space goes.

To state the obvious; there is a charge for parking here.


Route Map

It was dry today and despite there being cloud on the tops I was determined to get up high. I hadn't been on Catstye Cam since April 2011 so it seemed like a visit was long overdue.

Birkhouse Moor seen from Greenside Road. The path you can see over on the left of the picture is the one I followed later in the walk.

Houses on Greenside Road with Place Fell behind.

Heading along Greenside Road towards Greenside Mines. It looked a little brighter up there but sadly it didn't last, or at least it didn't where I was going.

Some of the old Greenside Mine buildings beside Swart Beck.

Glenridding Beck.

and again, this time with a cloud topped Catstye Cam in view.

Looking back down the route with Sheffield Pike over on the other side of the valley. I'd already guessed who was up there today and it was confirmed when Mr & Mrs Leaney drove up behind me just as I was getting back to the car.

"How did you know we'd been up there"
"I saw your car parked at Stybarrow Crag this morning"

The cloud briefly parted long enough for me to take this picture of the end of Red Tarn.

High up on Catstye Cam now and despite it being a bit breezy, it was nowhere near what I'd expected it to be up here.

Catstye Cam summit. Take a couple of steps forward on a clear day and you get a great view down to Ullswater.

It was about time for a bite to eat so I took an off path straight line route down to Red Tarn. It might have been a bit eerie but is was completely peaceful standing here in the total silence.

And now looking in the opposite direction.

Red Tarn's outflow.

Birkhouse Moor summit.

And after thinking it wasn't going to happen, I found myself below the cloud and looking down to Glenridding and Ullswater.

Looking in the direction of Place Fell and Angle Tarn Pikes the cloud was much lower than it had been when I set out. That explains why it seemed to take a long time to drop below the cloud on the walk back from Birkhouse Moor.

Walking next to Mires Beck.

A close up of Glenridding.

Looking across to Glenridding Dodd.

Passing by Rattlebeck Cottage.

Not as close up as the previous picture. It looks like those sheep are going to follow me back into Glenridding.

David Hall -
Lake District Walks