Helvellyn via Striding Edge

Helvellyn via Striding Edge

There are plenty of ways to climb Helvellyn but reaching the summit via Striding Edge and returning along Swirral Edge is the classic route. Scrambling across the knife edge ridges makes Helvellyn one of the most exciting mountains to climb in the Lake District, and one of the most popular.

All routes on this site have been walked with a dog but this doesn’t mean that all routes are suitable for all dogs. People and dogs have fallen and died on this route and you'll need to decide if you are comfortable bringing your dog with you. To successfully hike this route, your dog will need to be able to scramble over narrow ledges, often with a 60-100ft drop. If your dog hasn't scrambled before, this isn't the route to begin with. If you do decide to bring your dog, make sure you have the right gear.

Start and End Location: Car park in Glenridding
Start Postcode: CA11 0PD
Distance: 13km
Time: 5-6 hours
Facilities: Toilets in the car park and shops in Glenridding
GPX Download: Link below map
Grade: Hard Mountain Walk with mild scrambles

Download file: HelvellynStridingedge.gpx

From the car park, turn left to reach Greenside Road. Turn left along Greenside Road and continue to the Travellers Rest pub.

Just after the pub, take the gravel farm track on the left. Continue along this track, passing a campsite.

Take the next left and follow the path uphill, alongside the beck. The path is well marked and steeply climbs up the valley with stunning views back over of Ullswater.

Helvellyn striding edge dog

When the path reaches a stonewall, bear right and follow the zigzagging path across the moor. The path bear lefts, rejoins the edge of the stonewall and continues to a stile.

Cross the stile and follow the well marked path leading up to Striding Edge.

There is no set route here; for the most exciting climb, stay close to the centre of the narrow ridge. There is a more straightforward pathway to the right, which can be taken to avoid some of the scrambling.

Helvellyn striding edge dog

Before the final climb to the summit, there is a sudden drop known as the Chimney. There are well-placed footholds to scramble down. If you have a dog with you, the dog will need to be carried and passed between people here. Alternatively, to avoid the Chimney, retrace your steps and take the right hand footpath, just below the ridge.

After the Chimney, continue on the loose gravel path to reach the summit.

Helvellyn striding edge dog

The descent along Swirral Edge is marked by a large cairn to the right of the summit. Carefully scramble down the edge, staying as close to the centre/ centre-left of the ridge as possible. If the weather is clear, there are stunning views back across Striding Edge.

Helvellyn striding edge dog

Continue on the well marked path across the moorland, making a slight detour to Red Tarn on the right if you wish.

After continuing down the valley, the path crosses a footbridge. Turn right after the bridge and follow the road to Glenridding, retracing your steps to the car park.

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