Coast to Coast Day 5: Grasmere to Patterdale

Today we completed 9 miles in about 6 hours, and the consensus was that it was the easiest day so far. Bailey’s Achilles was uncomfortable but she was able to hike with minimal impact. Unfortunately Tracy’s blister got worse, though she remarkably powered through the pain! After leaving our hotel together, Samuel headed off to do the “high route” up Helvellyn (the third highest peak in England) and along “striding edge,” a famous scramble on the top of a knife-edge ridge. The guidebook says to allow an extra three hours for that route, but Samuel still beat us to the Patterdale guesthouse by about an hour! We made good progress at first up smooth paths towards Grisedale Tarn, having an early lunch at its outflow towards Patterdale. The weather had been kind on the ascent, but the rain came just as we got out our sausage rolls from Lucia’s! So, lunch was quick and we started heading towards Patterdale, after a short detour as I took the wrong route, but convinced the others it was just because we needed a bit of bog on today’s journey! I managed to get a few drone flights in between the rain showers, though the gusty winds made the video a bit jumpy. The descent towards Patterdale seemed rockier than the ascent. After crossing a bridge towards the bottom, the path smoothed out then turned into a road, and we were marching for the last mile or two. We were even treated with some Oreo cows! We were given a very warm welcome at the Old Water View, which Wainwright himself stayed at, though it has been well renovated since! Our hosts recommended Fellbites in nearby Glenridding which worked very well for dinner and they helped arrange the short taxi ride as rain looked imminent.

Tomorrow is our final day in the Lakes but a big day climbing over Kidsty Pike and walking 14-15 miles. I’ve researched the best route, but I fear Tracy’s blister will be too bad for the climb. I have been surprised by the mental drain of the weather and rocky terrain which has impacted all of us. With 4 of the 16 days of hiking completed, we have seen tremendous extremes of climate while enjoying fantastic scenery. I am reminded by Tracy that certain challenges “were not in the travel brochure.” I guess the only answer is “welcome to an Ireland family vacation 😎.”

Yesterday’s blog was published before this great sunset from our windows…
… which got even better. It seemed a good omen for tomorrow based on the saying “ red sky at night, shepherd’s delight,” which is even mentioned in Matthew 16:2.
After a good night’s sleep and an early 7:30 breakfast, we were ready to head off, though immediately Samuel left us behind as he had a more challenging route.
The valley we were heading up looked ominous. The cloud base rose as we hiked so we never made it into the clouds, though Samuel did!
The Coast to Coast path is not marked in the Lakes, so we were surprised by this sign but happy to comply.
Once again, Bailey is fashionable (of course!!)
We marched along a well made path under the watchful eye of a sheep.
Looking back, we could see the bottom of the valley where we had started less than 2 hours previously.
We made it to the waterfall that you can see from the bottom of the valley…
… which Samuel had been at more than an hour previously!
We had to cross the waterfall’s river, but by now everyone is confident.
There is no hesitation as Janet marches through the river!
We make it over today’s high point and descend towards Grisedale Tarn
Hiking beside the tarn.
Meanwhile, Samuel is at the top of Helvellyn, enjoying the clear views of the Eastern fells and beyond, which is where we are heading next!
The weather allowed a short drone flight above Grisedale Tarn. We stopped for lunch at the bottom end.
A quick lunch before the rain.
Grisedale Tarn from the other direction, with the valley towards Patterdale.
Meanwhile, Samuel has completed Striding Edge and is heading down.
We pass a few other hikers as we hike down.
A drone’s perspective of hiking down from the tarn
Team photo by a mountain hut, looking down the valley towards tonight’s destination.
My attempt to capture some dramatic footage while flying over waterfalls. It is harder than it looks!
The smoother path means we are closer to the finish which makes us happy!
The valley has different wildlife compared to the fells, from dandelion fields …
… to young lambs …
Samuel gets out of bed to join the finisher’s photo.
After dinner, I get another drone flight in to show Old Water View guesthouse with Ullswater in the distance.
Or a view with today’s fells in the background.

Don’t forget to check out our Relive video which shows the route and gives a cool perspective!

This page is linked to from my England’s Coast to Coast home page.

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Published by Peter Ireland

I am originally from England, and my wife Janet is from Louisiana. When we started Geocaching in 2002, we needed a name, and the Cajunlimeys were created, and that is the name I use for my blog. Even though Janet has no Cajun blood, her cooking is excellent! “Limeys” comes from the nickname for English sailors, who ate limes to prevent scurvy. We live in Houston, Texas, with Bailey and Samuel. We love adventures and want to share the experiences with others. When planning trips, I have found other people’s sites very useful, so I want to give back and add a different perspective.

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