Fairfield & St. Sunday Crag

Name of walk Fairfield & St. Sunday Crag
Date of walk 2022-01-17

It was my 60th birthday! I had spent my 50th climbing Snowdon, so today I chose to do a solo walk up to Fairfield and St. Sunday Crag, via Raise Beck and Grisedale Tarn, a route I hadn’t done for 16 years. The weather was perfect, so I set off early to drive to the lay-by on Dunmail Raise.

01

As I walked across the grass from my car towards Raise Beck, I took a photo of the mist rising up towards Helm Crag in the sunrise.

02

Approaching the gap between the fells, I take the path up beside the beck, not the one up to Seat Sandal.

03

View back to Steel Fell on the other side of Dunmail Raise, glowing brightly in the sunrise.

04

One of the many cascades of Raise Beck.

05

I head steeply up, it is awkward walking in a few places with bits of ice on the rocks. I approach the rather muddy, eroded section.

07

It takes about an hour to reach the tarn. Grisedale Tarn with Fairfield on the right. St Sunday Crag joins it to the left.

08

A close up of my route up the scree zig zags of Fairfield.

10

I break for a coffee by the wall below before heading up. Seat Sandal on the left. Thermal Inversion in the north western fells.

12

A close up of the inversion.

13

The steep ascent is tempered by the wonderful views of the inversion.

14

I am being watched!

16

I'm rather enjoying the climb up, it's a lot easier than I thought it would be.

17

View down Tongue Gill. Coniston Water on the far left, then Coniston Old Man and Wetherlam etc. Bowfell just above Seat Sandal.

18

Dollywaggon Pike on the right.

19

View of Great Rigg on the left.

21

22

Looking towards Dollywaggon Pike, Nethermost Pike, Helvellyn and the ridge of Striding Edge.

24

A close up view of St. Sunday Crag and the steep descent to get there! Ullswater on the left.

25

A close up view of Dollywaggon Pike, Nethermost Pike and Helvellyn.

26

Another inversion shot.

27

The path approaches the summit as I look over to Coniston Water.

28

Fairfield summit. Windermere on the right.

29

One of the shelters full of snow.

30

I head south for a view of Great Rigg.

31

A closer view of Windermere.

32

Still snow on the edges.

33

Deepdale.

34

A panorama of the view. left click to enlarge, click again to return.

36

Cofa Pike sticking up.

37

I head for the route down to Cofa Pike. The ridge of Striding Edge above my shadow.

38

I drop down to Cofa Pike.

39

My spikes are on for the descent off Cofa Pike which is in shade, so there is still ice on the rocks. I take my time, but it is an awkward and steep climb.

41

Glad to be down! I take off my spikes and have a coffee break in the sunshine.

42

The easy route ahead up to St. Sunday Crag.

43

I approach the summit. Only the second lot of people I have seen so far.

44

Summit view north east.

45

I head towards the edge for a better view of Ullswater and Place Fell on the right.

46

A close up view.

47

I head back to the summit.

48

Summit panorama. Left click to enlarge, click again to return.

49

It is about 12.30pm now. Another view over to Dollywaggon Pike, Nethermost Pike and Helvellyn and their ridges.

50

Caudale Moor and Ill Bell on the left. Then Middle Dodd and Red Screes. On the right Dove Crag and Hart Crag. Below is Hartsop Above How.

51

I head back down to Deepdale Hause.

52

53

I then take one of the tracks down to the tarn.

54

View back.

55

The outflow of Grisedale Tarn.

56

Dollywaggon Pike.

57

I cross over the stepping stones and stop for a coffee on the rocks. I then continue around the tarn. A bit wet in places on this side.

58

Back to the track down Raise Beck.

59

The top of the beck is now in sunshine.

60

I head back down.

The 8.3 mile walk took me six hours. An excellent way to spend my birthday!

Jo.

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