1st May 2017

Visiting Fairfield, a mini walking project - Walk No 7 - from Grasmere via Alcock Tarn, Nab Scar, Heron Pike and Great Rigg

Time 10:20am to 2:15pm
Duration 3 hr 55 min
Distance 7.8 mile
Ascent 3100ft isn't far away
Walking with On my own
Grasmere - Alcock Tarn - Nab Scar - Heron Pike - Great Rigg - Fairfield - Grisedale Hause - Little Tongue - Grasmere
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.
Weather Readings

The Gadget
All readings were taken using a Kestrel 2000 Weather Meter
Live temperature recorded at the time I press the hold key
Maximum Wind Speed Maximum wind speed since the weather meter was turned on at each location Average Wind Speed
Average wind speed since the weather meter was turned on at each location
Wind Chill
Combination of wind speed and temperature. The gadget does the calculations not me.

Route Map


Today, I set off much later than I normally would on my own. Apparently we were supposed to have a day of low cloud which would lift a little around midday. Much to my delight, when I got here there was no cloud on the fells at all and as a bonus, I enjoyed lots of sunshine on the walk. The most notable thing higher up was the wind.
So where am I and what am I doing. Well, this is Dora's Cottage, that's Helm Crag and on my left is Grasmere. This is the 7th of my Fairfield walks and one which would take me up to Alcock Tarn, then onto the western arm of the Fairfield Horseshoe and I'd return via Grisedale Tarn and one of the Tongue Gill routes.

Houses on the outskirts of Grasmere seen below Silver How and Blea Rigg.


Helm Crag.

Looking down to Grasmere.

Alcock Tarn in front of Seat Sandal and Great Rigg.

Alcock Tarn seen as I start the walk across / up to Nab Scar.

Vary hazy conditions again today so there isn't a great deal in the way of clarity for the long distance views.

Heading up to Heron Pike.

Looking ahead to Great Rigg and Fairfield. Blimey, it wasn't half windy across here.


Great Rigg, Fairfield and Hart Crag. Hopefully over the next week or so I'll be walking through the valley, up to Link Hause and then across to Fairfield from there.

I wonder where everyone is !
I passed a group who were making painfully slow progress on Heron Pike and between Nab Scar and Fairfield they were the only people I saw. Very strange for a sunny (albeit very windy) bank holiday.

Fairfield taken from Great Rigg summit.

This helicopter was back and forth quite a few times so I assumed it was on some sort of training exercise , , , , then
, , , , I spotted the green (or is it yellow) jacket. I zoomed in and realised they were collecting stones. Most probably for a footpath repair somewhere.

Fairfield number 7 - and again there's no one else up here.

Cofa Pike and St Sunday Crag.

Leaving Fairfield I head in the direction of Seat Sandal.

It was a bit more sheltered from the wind as I walked down towards Grisedale Tarn. Just as well because some parts of this route are like walking down a street covered in marbles.

Looking back up to Fairfield with St Sunday Crag on the left .

Mmmm, still very hazy looking in that direction.

Well what a great walk that was. I expected it to be really busy but it wasn't. I expected it to be cloudy but it wasn't. I expected parking to be difficult but it wasn't. We seem to expect perfection on bank holidays and if we get anything less, we feel short changed and moan about it to each other. Thankfully on this occasion I can tell everyone what a great weekend of walking I've had.

And to finish, I look up to Stone Arthur as I walk back to the car. Cars and motorbikes speed past like there's no tomorrow, campervans drive past at a more relaxed pace and a fully loaded cyclist passes at only a few miles an hour more than my walking pace. It's quite warm now and i feel like I'm walking on a different day to the one I had up on Heron Pike in the wind. I'm also getting hungy and because I hadn't bothered stopping, I guess the food I've carried all the way around could have been left in the car because that's where I ended up eating it at the end of the walk.

David Hall -
Lake District Walks