Where is this walk?

Helvellyn from Thirlmere

January 24, 2024

The steep climb of Helvellyn from Thirlmere avoids all the danger (and excitement) of the more popular eastern approaches. However the views are constantly good, particularly over Thirlmere and the summit ridge is always a pleasant place.

The Walk

The steep slopes of the western approaches to Helvellyn from Thirlmere have often made me tired just looking at them, It has been many years since I have climbed them. However the promise of a cloud inversion at roughly 2,500 foot was enough to set me and Holly off on the broad track. The climb is relentless and unfortunately I was not blessed with the views across Thirlmere on this occasion.

It was at Browncove Crags that we emerged in to the bright sunlight. Within a few metres the world had changed. A variety of mountain summit popped out above the cloud which now sat like a snow field below. I have been in cloud inversions before but this was the best. Fellow walkers were sat in t shirts on the snow such was the warmth of the sun. I hope the photos have done justice to the day.

For an hour I wandered around the summit ridge of Helvellyn enjoying the views and trying to recognize the highest Lake District mountains which popped out of the cloud. Its times like this you realize how distinctive Great Gable is, recognizable in an instant. It was a real shame to have to drop back in to the cloud on the equally steep descent.


I am very fortunate to be able to pick and choose my days on the hills. However do look closely at the weather forecast and if at all possible take a day off work and climb above the clouds. Its remarkable. The excellent Mountain Weather Information Service is the best to look at.

Navigation Tips on Helvellyn from Thirlmere

Paths abound on Helvellyn even on the less popular western approaches. Despite this be alert in the cloud. On the descent the path turns sharply right on Comb Crags, it is easy to miss. Particularly if the paths are frozen and dangerous. I had taken a route a little away from the path on grass and initially missed it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *