I must have climbed Striding Edge at least twenty times. Been up to Helvellyn perhaps thirty times. It never disappoints. As you reach Birkhouse Moor and Catsycam and Helvellyn appear you feel you’re suddenly in a wild mountain place.

It’s actually fairly tame. Striding Edge is easy grade scrambling. It’s a joy to step out across it taking in big views and steep drops.

I camped once at Red Tarn. Strong winds woke me at three or four in the morning, funneling down from Helvellyn. I pulled on clothes, left my tent, and relocated slightly downhill where it was more protected. I told myself yes, I should have thought of that, but really it’s not what you expect in a carved out glacial space surrounded by steep slopes.

There were strong winds this day, but not across Striding Edge. Two hours later, across to Sheffield Pike, it took your breath away and stopped you from walking.

It is joyous here but I advise caution for beginners. People fall from Striding Edge and die. Two years ago, in winter, a man was blown off and died.

 

Striding Edge to Red Tarn

Friday May 13, 2016