Monday, 4 July 2011

Lake District Heatwave: Part 3 Gorgeous Grisedale

Five days of hot weather and tiny rockshoes were playing havoc with my poor bruised toes. On the final day of our holiday they rebelled.  A day in big boots was in order. Pinnacle Ridge on St Sunday Crag, Grisedale, is a classic grade 2 scramble with a sting it its tail: A pitch of moderate climbing that has a couple of thrutchy moves.  Just what is needed to add a bit of interest to the day.

Another day, another lake.  This is Ullswater, seen from the ridge of Thornhow. 

We parked at Patterdale and walked in via Thornhow, traversing across boggy and bouldery slopes above Grisedale to reach the base of the route. It isn't obvious at first and we puzzled for some time over the approach description in Scrambles and easy climbs in the Lake District. Eventually we located the start of the route and found the initial scrambling to be fun and easy, over jumbled blocks and spikes.

Later the climbing became more technical with a steep groove on the left of a tall tower to be climbed (avoidable with a nasty traverse on chossy slopes). We were lucky with the conditions, the groove is often greasy, but for us was beautifully dry.  The climbing was over far too quickly, and it wasn't long before we were basking in the sunshine on the summit of St Sunday Crag.

Striding Edge and Helvellyn

There were great views of Striding Edge and Helvellyn, bristling with people.  We headed southwest along the ridge to the glinting blue of the Grisedale tarn, where it was impossible to resist putting those battered feet in to the cool water.  

Thank you Lake District for a corker of a week.  :-)

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