Thursday 18 August 2022

Wainwright Challenge: 10-13/214 Nethermost Pike to Raise (Helvellyn)


On the 28th May I had the excuse of filming another fell race to head up to Helvellyn. I chose the option of going on the bus to do a linear hike. This meant jumping off the 555 at Wythburn Church along the side of Thirlmere reservoir. 

For quick version nip to the bottom and play the YouTube video!

This is a less well known path which went through the forest before opening out onto the hillside with views of Thirlmere. I was glad of excuses to pause a take pics:


I wasn't in a hurry and it took me close to 2 hours to get to the summit of Nethermost Pike which was rather underwhelming despite being the 9th highest Wainwright at 890m:

Nethermost Pike

Behind me was the iconic Helvellyn, which at 950m is the 3rd highest Wainwright, and the location I was intending to film. On my way to the summit I could see how many folks were taking the infamous Striding Edge route:

Striding Edge

As someone with a) a fear of heights and b) rubbish balance I was glad to take the steady route to Helvellyn summit! For the more adventurous Striding and Swirral Edges provide access from the Glenridding side. It is good that there are choices to suit most folks. In the end just getting to the summit is the aim:

I had barely had time for my coffee and a quick snack before I had to begin filming. The runners had come all the way from Threkeld across the Dodds and would have to go back the way they had come! A beautiful day for filming although it must have made it rather warm for the runners:

Helvellyn fell race

Once the final runners had passed I began to follow their route on to White Side. But first of all someone kindly took a decent photo of me at the trig point:

The summit plateau was quite long and then down and up again to Helvellyn Lower Man which is not a Wainwright despite being its own summit. It was quite a drop before a short climb to White Side (863m). The paths ahead and behind were very clear:

I didn't enjoy the descent from White Side as it was very rocky but at least the path then on to Raise was straight forward if long. At this point I knew it would be my last summit as I had to catch a bus home. The 883m top was my 13th Wainwright:

raise (Helvellyn)

On tired legs I was taking my steady way down to Sticks Pass when I was nearly taken out by a mountain biker! Luckily he and I both made it to the crossroads in one piece. My descent to Legburthwaite seemed to take an age and I wished I had remembered my walking poles:

Sticks Pass

A quick check of my watch showed that I just had time to take the 1 mile walk along the valley to get to the King's Head (which conveniently has a bus stop right outside!). This had to be one of the hardest earned pints ever:

King's Head pub, Thirlmere

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