19th July 07 - Helvellyn

The Biggie! Have been wanting to do Patterdale/Hole in the Wall/Striding Edge/Helvelyn/Swirral Edge/Hole in the Wall/Patterdale for years. It needs good weather and long period of sunlight.

The walk took 7.5 hours, is about 11 miles and Helvellyn is 3100ft. On top of that, Striding Edge is a tough climb. Much of it a scramble and "The Chimney" is real rock climbing! Add to that loose scree, and weather which can change in a second, and you have one interesting walk!

Yes, it was tough and it not for the weak or faint hearted. But the views are amazing and the sense of achievement has to be experienced to be understood.

Meadows at the start of the walk. Looking up Grisedale.
Up the long hard slope (slog!) to Hole in the Wall
At Hole in the Wall looking back over Ullswater.
At the start of Striding Edge
Nearing the end of the Edge - which is where it gets REALLY tough!
Just after the toughest bit. The Chimney and then climbing up loads of scree which dislodges at every step. Scary!
At the summit of Helvellyn - 3100 ft - looking down on Red Tarn
Just as we arrived at the summit, the cloud swirled in. You can be in a zero visibility situation very quickly! Bit scary as we had to go down by the equally perilous Swirral Edge which you can see on the right of the picture. But the cloud didn't last for long.
The descent was almost the hardest bit - my legs turned to jelly!
But a wonderful sense of "I've done it!"
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