Red Hot on Red Pike

Name of walk Red Hot on Red Pike
Date of walk 2016-09-14
Distance walked (miles) 7
Duration of walk 8 hours 0 minutes
Weather Very hot and still
Peaks on walk Red Pike
Walked with Ged and blind Kas
Parking Newlands Pass just above the church.

Wednesday was going to be a warm and clear, blue sky day, so Ged and I decided on Red Pike, High Stile and High Crag from Buttermere, taking the direct accent via Bleaberry Tarn. Too often Red Pike is in cloud, but it wouldn’t be today. Usually it is adverse weather conditions that cause a change in route plans. Today it would be the heat that would make us reconsider our plans and opt for an alternative route.

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We parked above St. James' Church. Red Pike is on the left.

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Inside St. James.

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The is a plaque dedicated to Alfred wainwright in the window with a view to Haystacks.

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Buttermere village with High Stile on the left and Red Pike on the right.

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We walk down to the lake shore. Fleetwith Pike at the end of the lake, with Haystacks on the right.

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We head up into the woods. The pitched path is quite slippery in places.

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Once out above the treeline the views start to open up. Looking north to Crummock Water with Grasmoor on the right.

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Three photo panorama of Buttermere. Looking across to Robinson, Hindscarth and Dale Head. Fleetwith Pike on the far right. Left click to enlarge, re-click to return.

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It is very hot today and there is no breeze at all. The steep climb is hard work. I can't remember the last time I had sweat getting in my eyes!

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The pitched path is one of the most awkward in the lake district because the stones are angled downwards. Treacherous in ice or when wet!

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Close up of Crummock Water.

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From higher up we now get to see Mellbreak on the left.

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The cascades of Sour Milk Gill. Dodd ahead and Red Pike summit on the left.

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We reach Bleaberry Tarn, our diagonal route up can be seen.

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View across Bleaberry Tarn to High Stile.

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Kas gets to cool down in the water.

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After a brief respite we continue on up.

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View back down to Bleaberry Tarn.

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We leave the pitched path for the red scree.

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View back, it is a very steep route. Dodd on the right.

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Looking back at the final scramble through the gully.

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Red Pike summit view along Crummock Water with Loweswater on the left. It was at this point that Ged realised that he had left his camera at one of our ascent rest stops, and had to nip back down several hundred feet to get it and then run back up again! Kas and I stayed right here, sat with this view and finally enjoying a bit of a breeze.

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The route up to High Stile. Once Ged had returned with his camera and got his breath back, we had lunch. We also decided to leave High Stile and High Crag for a cooler day and head back down via Lingcomb Edge and Scale Beck to Scale Force and back along the end of Crummock Water. A route that was downhill!

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We make for Lingcomb Edge.

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Two photo panorama with Ennerdale Water on the far left, then Starling Dodd and Great Borne. Then Hen Comb, Blake fell and Burnbank Fell with Mellbreak on the right. Lingcomb Edge near right. Left click to enlarge, re-click to return.

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Ennerdale.

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Heading down Lingcomb Edge it started to rain.

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The views turned a bit dull for twenty minutes as the cloud went over.

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Thankfully it stopped and we could remove our waterproofs and continue down. It was now very hot once more.

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Once at Scale Beck we just followed it down. An awkward route, in places the path had eroded away.

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It was very hot and sticky.

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One of the cascades near the bottom of the gorge.

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Scale Force taken from the bridge. At 170ft it is the highest in the Lake District. I have been here before, so today we just view it from a distance and then continue on our way.

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Looking across the lower slopes of Mellbreak and Crummock Water to Grasmoor.

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The route back to Buttermere is rocky and wet, but we don't rush, taking time out to enjoy the views.

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Even Kas enjoys a sit down.

The route we chose to return by was longer and had more challenging terrain, but was less of a cardiovascular challenge, so more manageable in the heat. It turned out to be quite a long walk too, taking us eight hours in total, but in the heat we dawdled and had lots of stops. I must remember to do more gentle ascents on hot days in future! When we got back to Buttermere we had a drink at ‘The Bridge’ pub. I also ordered a portion of chips…..a bad habit picked up from a priest I know! As we had driven to Buttermere via the Newlands Pass we drove home via the Honister Pass. I didn’t get home until 8.45pm. A long day!

Jo.

 

 

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