Scramble two of England's most famous ridges, in the heart of the Lake District
DurationMultiple durations available
FoodSome provided. Details below
Difficulty Level3 Three
A good ridge walk is one of the best days out in the mountains – seeing into two valleys at once, all while heading onwards towards a summit. Ridges vary in their narrowness and exposure, but the most famous are the narrowest of all, where care must be taken, but where exhilaration and adventure are always present. It’s the closest a hillwaker gets to being a mountaineer!
Join us on a weekend where you’ll be guided over two of the Lake District’s most famous ridges. Striding Edge is a long ridge that leads up to Helvellyn, England’s third highest mountain. Sharp Edge is shorter but harder, a definite hands-on affair that leads to Blencathra, a famous peak in the north of the Lakes.
Being with an experienced Large Outdoors Mountain Leader for these ridges will mean being guided safely along them, with expert tips, and the companionship of the group. Although ideally you’ll have hillwalking experience, you don’t need any ‘technical’ skills for this weekend – nothing more than you would for a normal hillwalking day. This weekend will be run as a small group.
Dates and Locations:
- Friday 17th – Sunday 19th April 2020 – Derwentwater Hostel
- Friday 24th July – Sunday 26th July 2020 – Derwentwater Hostel
In a nutshell:
- Attempt traverses of Striding Edge and Sharp Edge over a weekend in the Lake District
- Relax in our sociable accommodation, with food provide and great views of the Northern Fells
- Be accompanied by a fully qualified Mountain Leader, who will introduce you to these fantastic ridges
- Enjoy the atmosphere of the Lake District, and explore the local pubs and cafes
You can arrive at any time after 5pm, where you can begin to soak in the beauty of the local surroundings. Your Large Outdoors host will be there to greet you, we will then serve a welcome dinner for 8pm.
After breakfast we’ll head off for Glenridding, the village that stands right next to Ullswater, and the starting point for our first walk.
We begin by walking up the hill of Birkhouse Moor. From the summit we get an extensive view of the eastern arms of Helvellyn, including Striding Edge and the hill of Catstye Cam. With views back to Ullswater, and ahead to Red Tarn, we’ll soon begin the traverse of Striding Edge itself.
The Edge is an excellent walk because walkers can always choose between the airy crest of the ridge, or the path which winds its way past the most exposed bits only a few metres away. You can always swap between them as you wish, and your Leader will help you decide.
Once on the summit of Helvellyn, we’ll descend by the Swirral Edge, an extra ridge to add to the weekend! Although shorter than Striding Edge, Swirral Edge requires just as much care, and you’ll definitely get a chance to use your hands.
Once down on the path we enjoy an easy stroll back down into Glenridding, once more able to admire the scenery in these secluded valleys.
We’ll head off for the base of Blencathra. It’s a shorter walk-in today, but a dramatic one as we head round to the eastern side of the mountain, up Mousthwaite Comb and the valley behind to reach Scales Tarn.
From here the ridge of Sharp Edge is right above us, and after a short extra walk from the tarn we’ll be on it. Although a lot shorter than Striding Edge, Sharp Edge is… well … sharper! You’ll definitely need your hands for a section or two, but the narrowness just adds to the fantastic views, and you’ll be elated when you’re walking up the final grassy slope to the mountain summit.
Taking in views over Keswick and the northern Lake District, we’ll descend via a grassy path.
Having completed several of the classic Lake District ridges, we hope you leave this weekend confident in your ability as a hillwalker, and keen to see more of the ‘exposed’ parts of mountains.
About the location
The Lake District National Park
The Lake District hardly needs an introduction – England’s highest mountains, its largest and deepest lakes, and miles of walking trails through natural woodlands and country parks. Famous for the Lakes poets, including Wordworth, and with a hillwalking tradition going back to and beyond the legendary Wainwright, every walker needs to visit ‘The Lakes’. The two mountains we’ll be on this weekend are in the north and east of the National Park, and we’ll have the chance to admire England’s second largest lake, Ullswater, and on a clear day see all the other famous hills of this part of the world!
Good to know:
17th – 19th April 2020, 24-26th July 2020.
Derwentwater Independent Hostel
Friday 20th – Sunday 22nd September 2019
- 2 nights hostel accommodation, please note bedding is supplied but you will need a towel
- 2 days of guided day walks – please note any excursions or other extra activities will incur an additional charge.
- Welcome meal on the Friday plus evening meal on Saturday. Breakfasts and packed lunch for Saturday.
- As well as meals, we also provide a variety of complimentary soft drinks and beverages – tea & coffee which includes herbal, fruit and decaffeinated options and fruit squashes.
What our members have to say...
My first Large Outdoors and (Ulster & the Giant's Causeway Walking Weekend) Irish experience was absolutely fantastic. Everything was organised perfectly and Gareth is a joy to be around. I loved every minute and will definitely book myself onto another trip. #toldallmyfriendstheyhavetocomeVanessaMember Since 2018
Well, for a non-walker it was certainly challenging but my word was it exhilarating! The feeling of achievement after every day, was just fabulous. The group we went with were all strangers on day one, but firm friends by the end of the week. The comradery on some of the tougher walks, helped me to the top…..and wow what views. Anyone thinking of doing it - don’t worry….just go for it!ClaireMember Since 2016
“I didn’t really know what to expect on my first ever walking holiday and wasn’t very prepared if truth be known – lesson to all read the essential kit list especially waterproofs! It was great fun and what a lovely group of supportive and encouraging people, especially Gareth who did a great job looking after us all. I must admit at times I found it a bit challenging but what a great sense of achievement when we reached the top of the mountains (hills) I will definitely do this again.ElizabethMember Since 2016