I've wanted to come back and do Striding Edge ever since my first (and only) crossing back in June 2008. Today was the best weather we've had for a while so I was up Helvellyn once more to make it my most climbed mountain!


Date: 16th January 2012 Ascent (m/ft): 1274m (4180ft)
  Start Location: Stybarrow Crag Highest Point: Helvellyn (950m/3118ft)
  Time Started: 09:25 Parking: Layby at Stybarrow Crag
  Duration: 5 Hours 25 Minutes Weather: Sunny, Moderate Winds

16.1km - 10.0 Miles

Difficulty: Difficult
Stybarrow Crag - Glenridding - Mires Beck - Birkhouse Moor - Striding Edge - Helvellyn - Swirral Edge - Catstye Cam (198) - Red Tarn Beck - Greenside Road - Stybarrow Crag
Early morning sunrise over the far eastern fells.
Glenridding Dodd bathes in sunshine whilst this side of Place Fell remains frozen. The ground was frozen solid for the entire walk, right down to valley level which made it interesting under foot!
The same scene but from much higher up the side of Birkhouse Moor. The higher you climb the more of Ullswater you can see.
The northern most cairn on Birkhouse Moor.
Again but this time looking to Striding Edge and Helvellyn. Still some stubborn snow on the highest summits.
The cairn on the highest point of Birkhouse Moor with a grand view to the bowl with Red Tarn hidden out of view. At this pointI could clearly see how much snow there was covering the path after Striding Edge, and although I didn't need them in the end, I was glad I brought crampons!
The dark side of Striding Edge.
A huge temperature inversion over to the south.
White Side and Skiddaw.
Another shot of the awesome temperature inversion.
Standing on High Spying How looking west along the edge.
The chimney just near the end of the edge.
Striding Edge.
The cornice on Helvellyn.
The summit cairn on Helvellyn with the Pennines clearly seen on the horizon.
Red Tarn and Striding Edge.
A panorama of the awesome temperature inversion to the south. The fells poking out to the left are the Coniston range, with Crinkle Crags and Bowfell clearly identifiable. Click to see larger version (254kb).
The trig column on Helvellyn.
Descending Swirral Edge and then onto Canstycam.
Catstycam summit cairn. When I set out this morning I had two options, the first was to finish on Catstycam and head down Red Tarn Gill, and the other was to head back up Swirral Edge and then over White Side and Raise to follow Sticks Pass down. As the wind was giving me quite a beating up here I decided to head down early.
Red Tarn and Helvellyn from Catstycam.
Cross Fell beyond Arthurs Pike, Bonscale Pike and Hallin Fell.
There were large areas of solid frozen water dotted around the fellsides throughout the walk today.
I got a bit carried away with taking photos of the icicles on the way down Red Tarn Beck - but they look stunning!
This one looks like its come straight from the depths of the ocean!
Red Tarn Beck.
A wide shot of Red Tarn Beck with lots of ice about.
The weir just near the hostel.
High Street and Gray Crag - where I was just under a week ago.
Ullswater around Glenridding taken from the path back to Stybarrow Crag.