Scafell Pike – the circular route from Seathwaite

I always like to do circular walks when at all possible and from Seathwaite at the head of Borrowdale this is easy to do.  My preferred route is up via Styhead Tarn and the Corridor route, then up to Lingmell Col to join the main path up from Wasdale.  The return route then heads back via Broad Crag and Ill Crag to Esk Hause and then down the pretty Ruddy Gill.  The distance up and down is roughly the same, five miles each way.

Yesterday I was walking with Kevin and his daughter Becky.  Kevin was attempting to climb all the national 3 peaks over the summer.  This was the second peak as he had already completed Snowdon a few weeks previously with his youngest daughter and next week will be heading up to Scotland to climb Ben Nevis with his eldest daughter.

We started early, the advantage being that we could park close to Seathwaite farm instead of miles down the road!   Also we enjoyed quiet paths until we were fairly near the summit. 

We reached the summit in around 3 hours.  Being a Saturday it was even busier than usual with groups walking for charities, dogs taking their owners for walks, parents and children, runners - including my friend Eleanor reccying the Borrowdale fell race route.  Also moving quickly up to the summit as we were just leaving, was one of our top fell runners, Rob Jebb who was doing his Bob Graham round – I read later on that he had achieved the 2nd fastest time ever in an awesome time of 14 hours 30 mins.

The start of our route back can be viewed from Scafell Pike summit – a rocky path which winds its way below Broad Crag, Ill Crag and Great End before heading out of sight down to Esk Hause.  From there it was down Ruddy Gill with it’s steep, lush, plant covered sides and pretty waterfalls to Stockley bridge, an old packhorse bridge and from there it’s an easy walk back to the farm and the end of our walk.  We were up and down in 6 hours 20 minutes, a good time which included lunch on the summit, stops for photos and also to admire the views.

Thanks Kevin and Becky for a great day out.


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