Steve Pardoe's Blencathra Page

Ascent of Blencathra, English Lakes (868 m) by Sharp Edge, 8. October 2000

An autumnal walk with Steve Carr and Neil Sheldrake. After a warm and sunny start, it became a wild and windy day, and threw rain and hail at us, though with occasional bursts of bright sunshine.

Rather than heading straight up the more popular south flanks, Neil's route took us from Mungrisdale and gently along the River Glenderamackin, across a footbridge and doubling back up to the col above Mousthwaite Combe, before a long and easy traverse to Scales Tarn. We had a spot of elevenses a little above the lake, then headed up and over Sharp Edge, which is a scramble with a notorious "bad step". We negotiated this with some difficulty, as the rock was wet and very greasy in places: another party was using a rope to protect the crossing.

Then it was a short pull up to the misty summit, and we descended to the south east over the top of Doddick Fell, down Scales Fell, across the col to Souther Fell, and down through bracken to the Mill Inn and the footbridge. It was good to get one in before the clocks go back.

Steve C and Neil setting off up the the valley...

...of the River Glenderamackin

Steve P, Steve C and Neil, with the familiar "saddleback" of Blencathra behind

Heading past Scales Tarn, with Sharp Edge in prospect to the right

Steve C and Neil getting to grips with the ridge

The slabs were extremely slippery, and it was often easier, if a little more scary, to make progress right along the crest

Another party were sensibly using a rope and slings to protect novices across the "bad step"

Sharp Edge from Doddick Fell, as the mist turned to rain. Trying to descend didn't seem like a good idea, though a number of people were doing

Steve C and Neil on the long ridge of Souther Fell, which we used for descent

Big sky, great day!

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