Height: 950 metres / 3117 feet Grid reference: NY 34167 15158 Category: The Eastern Fells
Helvellyn… Continue Reading
I seem to be following a bit of a pattern here with heading out early, chasing the sunrise but I find it is well worth it. Today’s views were just jaw dropping with the sun lighting up the fells with some fabulous colours. The wind was very strong making it feel like a bit of an Arctic expedition at times and I was well layered up for this one.
If I wanted to get out for a walk today then it would have to be early so that I could fit everything else I needed to do in. So, earlier than early it was then! It was dark when I set off for Helvellyn from Wythburn, climbing the main section in first light and returning along the same path. I was hopeful for some clear weather at the top, but you never can tell what it will do and you certainly can’t if it is dark when you set off! The weather turned out not to be the best but it was nice to get up and back down again before breakfast.
It ended up being a day of two halves with the weather, but I really couldn’t have expected anything better than the cold and clear weather complete with a temperature inversion that covered the whole of the south Lakes that I managed to see from the summit of Helvellyn. Later the inversion lifted and completely enveloped me making it a completely different walk during the latter stages.
I have wanted to get up to Helvellyn for a decent sunrise for a good while so today seemed a good day for it with it being nearly the shortest day and the sunrise being relatively late. It was cold and clear (and dark) when I set off from Wythburn and conditions were pretty extreme when I made it to the top…
It has been fantastic over the last few weeks to receive so much support from everyone about our new venture in Bowness, both by e-mail and in person at the shop – really lovely to meet everyone who has visited. We all know that fell walking people are warm hearted! Special mention must be made of the Gunter family from Florida in the USA who have followed the site almost since the beginning – I would love to say they flew in specially to see me, but that’s not quite true although the whole family did make a special journey during their holidays to visit the shop – thanks for coming and I’m sorry I missed you that day.
Today’s walk was to Helvellyn for the second time during June; the reason for that was to climb my penultimate Birkett peak, Brown Crag. The clarity today was quite striking even though it was overcast with long clear views for mile after mile.
I couldn’t resist a walk over Striding Edge today in winter conditions and at the start of the walk, it looked very promising indeed. I was glad later that I had set off relatively early for this walk as a sheet of cloud caught us and covered the fells whilst I was on the summit of Helvellyn. I cannot complain though as it was a superb walk in brilliant conditions. On the way back down to Grisedale it was nice to bump into a couple of Striding Edge followers and have a chat.
It has been sweltering over the weekend so I fancied getting out early today to ‘beat the heat’. I certainly managed that as it was pretty cold crossing Striding Edge this morning when the clouds swirled in. By the time I reached the summit of Helvellyn, the clouds had disappeared and the summer weather returned once more. On the way down to Patterdale I bumped into a gang of Striding Edge fans from Hull – nice to meet you all Martin and friends!
Blimey, it was cold this morning! It was -8C when I drove through Grasmere for an early start up to Helvellyn from Dunmail Raise. The slog up Willie Wife Moor took longer than I thought and when I reached the snow line at 650 metres, the going became even tougher with the iced over snow making walking difficult. Once on the summit of Helvellyn, I put my crampons on for security and enjoyed the high level traverse of the snowy ridge.