Walking Helvellyn

Walking Helvellyn - Introduction

If you are looking to Walk up Helvellyn then this is the Blog for You... This Blog on Helvellyn has been provided to give you every bit of information you will need to know when climbing Helvellyn.

Where is Helvellyn?

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Helvellyn is a Mountain that is located in the UK specifically England within the Lake District. Helvellyn is found in the mid eastern fells of the Lake District. It forms 1 of the 214 wainwrights and is the 3rd tallest mountain in England.

Above is an image that locates where Helvellyn is in the UK.  You can check on google Maps how long it will take you to get to Helvellyn from your location.  

Helvellyn Travel

There are Many ways you can get to Helvellyn, however it all depends on where you are based. if you live within the UK and are not immediately local to Helvellyn the easiest option would be to drive. Below are the different transport options on how to get to the base of the mountain.


The Nearest Locations you can get to walking up Helvellyn by car is Glenriding - CA11 0PD, Thrilmere -CA12 4TW (Approx Location) depending on which route you are planning on climbing.  


If you are travelling by train to Helvellyn it will be quite difficult to travel as there are 3 start points from the sides of the mountain.  The West Coast mainline runs to the east of the Lake District, connecting Oxenholme, Penrith and Carlisle with London and Glasgow. A direct train runs from Manchester to Windermere. Local trains call at Kendal, Staveley and WindermereYour best option would be to get the train to Windermere and then get a coach or taxi to one of the start points. (some of the start points are a lot more rural).

- Plane 

If you are coming from over seas the best option would be to get a plane to Manchester airport, which is 80 Miles from the lake district. From the airport you will be able to get a coach into the Lake District and then further transport to the begining of your desired walking route.

How High Is Helvellyn?

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Helvellyn is the 3rd Highest Mountain in England standing at 950m (3,118 ft). 

How Long To Climb Helvellyn

The time it will take you to climb Helvellyn will vary depending on your level of fitness and which route you decide to take  up the mountain. 

Striding Edge

Distance - 6.5km

Time - 3 - 4  hours 

Ascent - 850m

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Helvellyn From Thrilmere


Distance - 3.5km

Time - 3 - 4  hours 

Ascent - 720m

Routes up Helvellyn

As Mentioned above their are two main routes up Helvellyn,. Detailed below are the stages of routes up Helvellyn.

Striding Edge

Stage 1

From the car park in Glenridding, head west along the Greenside Road as it climbs. When the road forks – head left which lead down to Glenridding Beck and go over the bridge. keep following the large track as it passes Gillside Farm. It begins to climb again, following Mires Beck. Bear left at the wall to continue following Mires Beck.

Stage 2

The path climbs towards a notch in the skyline. The path climbs to a wall and follows it uphill before heading right, away from the wall and up to Birkhouse Moor. The summit of this Wainwright is visited enroute and is marked by a short cairn. Head south west along the spine of Birkhouse Moor where, after around 500m, you will reach a step stile where paths from Grisedale meet the our path from Patterdale.

Stage 3

It also marks the beginning of the climb up to Striding Edge. The path will reach a rock outcrop. The exposure appears quite suddenly as you step out onto the ridge. From this point you will see the view of Striding Edge and Helvellyn. Below to the right is Red Tarn. Follow the edge towards the summit of Helvellyn. The most challenging section of Striding Edge is a descent known as The Chimney, a rock tower that requires a tricky down climb.

Stage 4

Once over The Chimney you will be in a depression between Striding Edge and Helvellyn itself. scramble up onto Helvellyn’s summit plateau. After some steep climbing you’ll emerge onto Helvellyn. The very best way to continue this walk is by descending Swirral Edge, another steep, exposed scramble. After you traverse this edge yo will join the path you came up on and head back down the way you came to glenridding.

Helvellyn From Thrilmere

Stage 1 - From the car park. Cross the footbridge and bear right through the wooden gate. Keep right at the fork, following the signposts for Helvellyn. The path climbs, and gradually becomes increasingly steep and there are a few small sections of scree. Keep right at the junction and follow the rocky path to the summit. Continue following the path along the ridge to reach a stone shelter and a junction. Take the right-hand footpath. The path descends before reaching a fork. Take the left path and continue for a few metres before turning left to climb to Nethermost Pike summit.

Stage 2 - Continue on the grassy path, which slowly bears left to High Crag. The path descends and meets a more defined track. Turn left and follow the more defined track to reach a fork. Take the left fork, which runs just below a section of rocks and a cairn. The path gradually bears left to climb, heading to a second cairn. Continue straight on to Dollywagon Pike summit. The start of The Tongue is marked with a pile of stones. From the summit, retrace your steps a few metres to the closest cairn and then turn slightly left. Follow the grassy footpath, heading to reach a junction and a metal post. Turn left and continue on the rocky footpath.

Stage 3 - Grisedale Tarn soon comes into view and the steep pathway zig-zags down towards the edge of the tarn. As the path begins to bear left, take the very faint right-hand footpath, which looks more like the start of a small stream than a pathway. Keep the tarn on your left. The grassy path gradually becomes more defined as it bears right and steadily climbs across the hillside. The path soon levels out and reaches a wide junction. Turn right, heading towards the metal posts. The path runs alongside Raise Beck towards Dunmail Raise. As the path levels out and approaches the road, turn right and follow the fence to the far right-hand corner of the field.

Stage 4 - Go through the wooden swing gate and immediately bear slightly right, following the direction of the public footpath sign. The grassy path soon reaches a wide river. Walk upstream for a few metres to find an easier crossing. After crossing the river, turn left and head towards the stone wall and footpath sign. Turn right, keeping the stone wall on your left and follow the path. At the fork, keep left. The path approaches another stone wall and then bears right before turning left to cross a footbridge. Go through the gate and turn right. follow the gravel road for 2km then Take the left path and go through the gate. The path crosses a series of bridges, Continue on the main track for approximately 2km to return to the car park.

Helvellyn Weather

The Weather conditions on Helvellyn can be unpredictable, this is due to the fact that mountain ranges tend to create their own conditions. So you should be aware that weather conditions on Helvellyn can change rapidly and often for the worst. A good day at sea level is no guarantee of good weather on the mountain! You should Be safe and prepared before climbing. 

Before going to climb Helvellyn you can check the forecast on the Met Office

Although the weather may chop and change, Helvellyn Does get hotter in the summer and colder in the winter, Below is a table of the average temperature on Helvellyn during the year. The Top numbers are the highest average and the bottom are the lowest.

Helvellyn Temperature

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun
2°C 2°C 4°C 6°C 10°C 12°C
-4°C -4°C -3°C -1°C 1°C 4°C
Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
14°C 13°C 11°C 8°C 4°C 2°C
6°C 5°C 3°C 1°C -2°C -3°C
This Table is a rough Guide of the average temperature on Helvellyn for Pre planning,, Please check the weather before you start your climb on Helvellyn.

Best Month To Climb Helvellyn

The Best Month to climb Helvellyn depends on what you want to experience when climbing Helvellyn.  For example If you would like to climb Helvellyn on a hotter/clearer day then in the Mid summer would be the best time to climb, you can locate the tables on the average sunlight hours and  the average temperature during the year on Helvellyn, These two tables may give you a rough idea on what month you will want to climb Helvellyn. 

You may also want to know what the most popular month is to climb Helvellyn to either avoid or join the many people who climb the mountain each year. The most popular time to climb Helvellyn is usually during the summer, With the Winter being the more quieter times due to the worse conditions and daylight hours on the mountain. 

Best Time To Climb Helvellyn

The best time to climb Helvellyn will depend on the season you are climbing in and what you want to experience when climbing. Below is a table on the average sunrise and sunset times during the year.  When you go to book your trip please check the weather. The table is a rough guide so you can estimate what time you would like to climb.

Average Total Sunlight

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun
08:15 07:30 06:30 05:20 05:10 04:40
16:25 17:20 19.30 20:20 21:10 21:45
8h 00m 10h 00m 12h 00m 14h 00m 16h 00m 17h 00m
Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
05:00 05:50 06:50 07:15 07:40 08:25
21:20 20:30 19:25 17:45 16:20 15:55
16h 30m 15h 00m 13h 00m 10h 30m 8h 30m 7h 30m
This Table is a rough Guide for Pre planning, Please check the weather before you start your climb on Helvellyn.

Helvellyn Navigation

The main route up Helvellyn can be fairly simple on a clear day, however in bad conditions it can be difficult because of the low visibility. Most the climb you will be high up the path and if you are unable to see the mountain in the distance it can be quite tricky to know which path to take, navigation skills when climbing this mountain would be advised.

What do i need to bring when Climbing up Helvellyn?

The ideal kit list when climbing Helvellyn will vary slightly depending on what season you are climbing in, in the winter you will need warmer clothes and base layers etc, however the essentials will pretty much stay the same.

Warm and waterproof clothing

These items are essential all year round due to the temperamental conditions on Helvellyn, in the summer it may be hot at the base of the mountain, however the conditions will get slightly cooler and could become drastically worse at the the top, due to this make sure you bring waterproofs and warm clothing up with you.

A pair of good walking boots

You will need a pair of decent walking boots regardless of the weather or temperature when climbing Helvellyn.

Useful Hiking Equipment

You will need to bring essential bits of hiking equipment when climbing Helvellyn. These items consist of a map, compass, torch, whistle and first Aid Kit. You can also bring trekking poles, however they are not essential.

Food and Water

Helvellyn is a long days hike regardless of which route you are taking so it is a must that you bring plenty of food and drink with you when climbing. you MUST take your litter down the mountain with you!

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Guide To Climbing Helvellyn Created