Tarn Crag via Grey Crag and Harrop Pike

15 November 2008

A long-planned outing was made today to the relatively little-known Longsleddale for a visit to Tarn Crag and its neighbours Grey Crag and Harrop Pike.

From the end of the tarmac road along Longsleddale, heading up the road as it continues up the valley, eventually the road becoming a byway which crosses over Gatescarth Pass into Mardale

Part of the reason for the long delay in coming to Longsleddale was the concern, not allayed by anything I'd read and certainly not by the map, that there would be somewhere to park. Well, this spot might well fill up at busier times of the year, but there was space for quite a few cars at the end of the tarmac road.

The River Sprint heads down Longsleddale: on the right is Buckbarrow Crag behind which lies Tarn Crag

As we begin our ascent, a close-up of the road climbing towards Gatesgarth Pass. We will descend the road later this afternoon.

George in the sunshine.

A sheep and crags in the sunshine

Making our way along the wall before continuing our ascent of Great Howe

Now on the level ridge of Great Howe heading to Sleddale Fell of which Grey Crag is on the right.

Three people ahead of me, two going up the same way and one running down.

Looking across Longsleddale to the sea

A bit further to the west, layer after layer of hills

Looking down on the glinting fields of Longsleddale

George waits for me on Grey Crag

From near the summit of Grey Crag, looking to the tall cairn (just visible) on Harrop Pike

And Tarn Crag (centre) beyond which lies the higher Harter Fell and Kentmere Pike on the left

A panoramic photo from Grey Crag - click the picture for a larger version.

A view down Little Mosedale and across the Shap Fells from the impressive cairn on Harrop Pike

Following the fence back towards Sleddale Fell (Grey Crag on the left of the ridge)

We have reached Sleddale Fell and turned right 90 and crossed the fence which we continue to follow to our next destination, Tarn Crag on the left of picture.

Near the summit of Tarn Crag is this interesting structure. It is the remains of a survey column built by the Manchester Corporation in connection with the construction of the Longsleddale Tunnel carrying the Haweswater Aqueduct. In the distance the sun glints on Windermere.

Looking south past Grey Crag to the Howgill Fells

As we descend alongside our trusty friend the fence, a view down Mosedale

Descending to the rather damp pass, with Branstree beyond

The path became rather damp in places.

After reaching the col we turned left and descended along a bridleway to the byway: I lost the path at one point, but the path was so boggy it made little difference. I wonder whether a more direct descent from Tarn Crag down to the byway wouldn't have been easier as the beaten track was not easy going.

Looking back up the valley across an attractive little bridge as the road takes us down.

Descending the road into Longsleddale.

Zoom in for more detail, or see map in larger window: Ordnance Survey | Open Street Map | Google Maps

A rather damp walk after the summit of Grey Crag, but still an interesting expedition. Total distance 11.0 km and 575 metres of ascent in 3 hours 48 mins



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Unless otherwise stated, all images copyright (c) Stephen and Lucy Dawson