Walk                           :  Tarn Crag (2,176 ft) and Grey Crag (2,093ft) from Mardale Head

Date                           :  23rd April 2021

Weather                    :  Dry, fine sunshine and a cool breeze


Distance                   : 6.5 miles round trip

Time Taken              : 2 hours to first summit (Tarn Crag)


Which part of Lakeland is this walk situated


Terrain Overview




Another April week of fine weather and a chance to seize the day to knock off two more Wainwrights in the Far Eastern region. These two fells

must rank as maybe the most remote (in terms of access) of all the listed fells in Book Two. My website charts the progress of my personal journey

in completion of the 214, and before undertaking a walk I do my research etc etc. On this occasion I winged it thinking that the Mardale Head starting

point would be the easiest route …. I was wrong and I freely admit it. Should anyone who reads this description and is thinking of trying it then

fine – but prepare yourself for some major losses of hard earned altitude. AW quite rightly details the walk to the fells from Sadgill



Journeying to Mardale Head and a shot of the Rigg and the spiny ridge route to High Street




The car park at Mardale Head – the starting point for this walk



From the southern end of the car park take the Gatescarth pass



Looking back to Haweswater from the pass



The well engineered track follows the line of Gatesgarth Beck between the shoulders of Harter Fell on the right and Branstree on the left



Looking back towards High Street and the ridge leading to it



The path climbs steadily to the col at Gatesgarth Pass



At the top of the col and the signpost marks the path to the Nan Bield Pass on the right and Sadgill straight on. We take the Sadgill route



Staying on the path we head towards Longsleddale and start to lose height (dramatically)



Almost at the bottom of the drop and we decide cut losses and follow the very sketchy track across some very boggy ground. The Idea being to

aim for the slope rising to the right where we will pick up a fence line that heads almost direct to the summit



Almost there now



The boundary fence right leading up to Tarn Crag, left eventually leading up to Branstree



Just a case of following the fence line through the peat bogs



Looking back towards the Gatesgarth Pass that we descended from



Surely the most remote of all houses anywhere ??



Towards the uppermost point of the fence, look out for an obvious path through the grass that leads towards the summit of Tarn Crag



And there it is – the summit cairn on Tarn Crag. A comfortable spot for lunch


Click here for a 360 degree view from the summit of Tarn Crag … https://youtu.be/yPl3Bzeiq5I



A cairn on a cairn. Spud waits patiently for his dinner



Come on Mum …. Hurry up !!!



About a hundred yards to the west lies the Survey Post built by Manchester Corporation during the construction of the Longsleddale tunnel

conveying the Haweswater Aqueduct



After lunch we set off for Grey Crag. The fence line previously followed serves as the best route across the boggy ground. The cairn visible

in the centre of the shot is Harrop Pike, the summit of Grey Crag is to the right of the fence line



Approaching the summit of Grey Crag



The cairn on the summit of Grey Crag


Click here for a 360 degree view from the summit of Grey Crag … https://youtu.be/AX74OYfTwnU



Looking East towards the Howgills and Pennines



Looking south towards Windermere



Heading back along the way I though someone had dropped a mint humbug on the ground but closer inspection turned out to be this fella ???



Returning to the Gatesgarth Pass to get back to Mardale Head



The valley of Longsleddale



Back over on the Mardale side as the sun starts top drop behind High Street



Nearly back down at the Car Park



A last look at the imposing North face of Harter Crag



Dad … can you tell me why you didn’t do these fells from Sadgill ??? – Are you unable to follow the advice given by Wainwright ???



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