11th December 2010

Seat Sandal and Grasmere


Walk Overview
Time 10.15 to 14.15
Duration 4 hr
Distance 7.4 mile
Ascent 2300 ft
Walking with On my own
A591 - Mill Bridge - Little Tongue - Hause Riggs - Grisedale Hause - Seat Sandal - South Ridge - A591 - Town Head - Under Helm - Easedale road - Grasmere - A591
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Roadside parking, A591 outside Grasmere

I've described this spot as roadside parking, but it is actually a rather long lay-by found between Grasmere and the bottom of Dunmail Raise. It is quite a popular spot, so latecomers may arrive to find it full. If this turned out to be the case the best alternative would be to try one of the car parks in Grasmere itself. It all depends on where you're going of course, but the distance this would add onto your walk is not much at all.


Route Map

Yesterday had been a miserable day of rain and drizzle with the fells hidden under the thick blanket of low cloud. Little did I realise that under the cloud, the snow was rapidly melting. Quite remarkable when you see what it was like only a couple of days ago.

Looking up to Seat Sandal.
The route I took didn't go up the ridge you can see here. Instead, I headed up to Grisedale Hause; the low point on the skyline on the right.

Steel Fell looking a lot less steep then it actually is.

This is the point where Little Tongue Gill and Tongue Gill join forces.

There are a couple of different paths you can take up here to reach Grisedale Hause, and to be honest, they're all as good as each other, unless you're here at this time of year, at this time of day and you want to stay in the sunshine. In which case the route I took up Little Tongue Gill is definitely the best option.

A somewhat hazy view back down to Grasmere.

Well, the walk from here to the skyline wasn't half hard work. What snow that was left was definitely deep, not really crisp and certainly not even. As much as I like the snow, when it gets to this stage all I want is for it to come back properly or melt all together.

Grisedale Tarn and Dollywaggon Pike.
The two ladies in this picture were the only people I saw from setting off until reaching Grasmere towards the end of the walk.

St Sunday Crag and Fairfield, taken from the steep section on the route onto Seat Sandal.

and again.

Heading up to the summit on the not quite so steep section of the route.

Seat Sandal summit in front of Dollywaggon Pike, Nethermost Pike and away in the distance is Helvellyn.

Also from the summit is another picture of St Sunday Crag and Fairfield.


Looking down to the top of Dunmail Raise where I'm reminded that we're never really far from civilisation; or at least the sound of it.

Seat Sandal (left) and Fairfield (right), seen from the gate taking me off the open fell and into the intake fields.

Yes, why not, it's been ages since I've walked through Town Head so I decided to extend the walk by a couple of miles and walk to Grasmere via the road you can see running through here.

Lunch with a view of Seat Sandal.

And after taking this picture, one by one another half dozen of these ladies popped up from the puddle they'd been splashing about in. All honking as loud as you like and looking ever so embarrassed at being caught in the bath. Then, before I had a chance to say "where are your towels", they quickly waddled across the field in the most ungainly manner you could imagine.

Town Head.

Ghyll Foot.

A view across the fields to Steel Fell.

Just before reaching Underhelm I took this picture of Seat Sandal, Fairfield, Great Rigg and Stone Arthur.

Seat Sandal was never out of view for long on this walk and here it is as seen from the outskirts of Grasmere.

A very quiet December afternoon in Grasmere.

David Hall -
Lake District Walks