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Coledale Round

  • Graceful and steep sided
  • Views over 3 valleys and lakes
  • Dominates the Northern Lakes skyline

Coledale Round

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The most enjoyable section of the Coledale Round are the walks to and views from the outlying summits. Whiteside from Hopegill Head is a classic narrow ridge with outstanding views up Buttermere, Whiteside has similar attributes and even the more bulky Grasmoor is sufficiently steep sided to offer a real feeling of being perched up in the skies. I would heartily recommend the extra miles these excursions entail. The Coledale Round reveals all from Keswick with a splendid view of the two distinctive summits of Grisedale Pike and Causey Pike; both seemingly protecting the bowels of this heavywieght circuit.

I usually head up Grisedale Pike first, it is a bit of a sweat and relentless as all its secrets are laid bare from the start but once on its small summit the remainder of the circuit (with the exception of the pull up to Grasmoor) gives the impression of a down hill ride. My last visit started in mist and rain but soon the clouds rolled away and from Hopegill Head the walk became an increasing joy – Buttermere peaked out from the rolling clouds whilst the return over Crag Hill revealed some lovely views over Newlands and Borrowdale.

I prefer pulling back off Causey Pike to the col under Outerside and Barrow which gives a fantastic run down the pretty valley to the the outskirts of Braithwaite. This is a big day, 13 miles which include the outliers of Whiteside and Grasmoor but the steep sides of the ridge offer some of the best views in the Lakes and real feel of a mountaineering expedition. Shame about the rotten effort at erosion control on Scar Crags, what are they thinking of?

Recommend: If taking no other detours definitely walk the ridge to Whiteside

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Coledale Round map


All maps are copyright of Where2Walk ©2017

OS Map: O/S 1.25,000. OL4 The English Lakes North West. Buy Map
Start Point: NY 230236. Parking is available in the side roads in Braithwaite. Then walk up the Whinlatter Pass road for a couple of hundred yards before the track leads steeply up stairs on to Grisedale Pike
Height to Climb: 1130ms (3,706 feet)
Terrain: Aside from the rotten attempt at improving the path off Scar Crags the paths are fine on the round and certainly easy to follow.
Eating & Drinking: The Coledale Inn & Royal Oak at Braithwaite are excellent Lakeland pubs, two of a diminishing number as many try and enter the 'restaurant scene' with the customery rise in prices and loss of character. The pub at Swinside is also good
Similar Walks Nearby: Skiddaw via Ullock Pike
The Newlands Round
Climbing Blencathra from Threlkeld
Places to Stay: Coledale Inn, BraithwaiteSwinside Lodge Hotel


Croft House Cottages, nr KeswickBeckstones Farm Guest House


  1. mountain mike says:

    Hi again well here we are again and Gav and my target today is Causey Pike,Scarr Craggs and Outerside,its a lovely day and conditions underfoot are also good.Its the 28 th April 2017 and I’m looking forward to a little neat scramble to the top of Causey Pike.We leave Gavs new motor at Stonycroft and its straight into it,steep walk uptp the ridge below the summit,two young ladies have just flew by us I’m well impressed,but we have to keep focused lol.After about 15 minutes we are at the top of a very small summit but the views are fantastic, after a small battle with the midgies we eat our lunch what a place to stop.We kick on towards Scarr Craggs and as we drop from the top a deer bolts from cover and heads away from us along the ridge that’s the first time in twenty years on these mountains I have see some large wild life lol, hope I got it on my action camera.We drop down towards Outerside and we are shortly at the top,looks like the weather is coming in behind us we press on.Its a nice little Wainwright and we are soon at the top a little break and we move off the weather is looking to change,steep descent this one and we are on the track back to Stonycroft a great day on the fells and all in four hours see you all later three more Waiwright bagged for us Mountain Mike.

  2. Mountain Mike says:

    Hi well here we are Gav and I to bag a couple of Wainwrights for Gav,weather looks hopeful as we set off upto the long trail to Grisedale Pike and Hopegill Head, as we turn to face todays target we can now see the tops covered in snow..hope its not to bad as the crampons are at home.We meet up with a couple of guys who are going our way we stop for a drink and as the pleasantries are over they carry on,Im taking my jacket off its dry but mild.
    We are now coming onto the lower levels of The Pike and the cloud is closing in,lets hope it clears,pretty soon were on the top of Grisedale Pike about a foot of snow a bit cooler so jacket back on as we head for Hopegill Head,snow is deeper and it looks like a nifty scramble in the snow to the top this is more like it and its another Wainwright.We go straight on from here to drop down into the valley to drop down below Eel Crag the sun is shining and there are a lot of people coming up towards us,we stop for lunch near the old mine after a nice break and photographs we are off back to the car park a great day on the fells.

  3. Mountain Mike says:

    Here I am again in The Lake District and today I’m heading for Grisedale Pike,Im on my own again as Gav is working and Matty has retired lol.From the car park above Braithwaite its a steep muddy walk onto the fells below The Pike,as my new boots have been sent for repair Im wearing my old Raichle Mt GTX boots lets hope they stay together lol,after a steep muddy walk I’m going past the disused quarry.M now onto Sleet How ,the weather is dry but windy and it is very slippy on here,some great views of Keswick and the surrounding area,I can see a fell runner a half mile behind me so I push for the top.The exposure is now beginning to show and the wind is biting,as I reach the top I find a lady sat having a coffee think I gave her a shock,its taken me an hour and thirty five minutes to get to the summit not bad as this is uphill all the way except for a few flat places.Quick drink and I’m going back the way I came, on the way down I pass at least four couples coming up.
    As I’m getting back down the track I notice that both the heels of my trusty old boots are coming away,feet are dry still but its not easy staying upright,some good photographs taken to show Gav and I’m back at the car total time taken two hours and forty minutes a good mornings walk and another Wainwright bagged see you soon Mountain Mike.

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