This short walk takes us up to the summit of Sheffield Pike, a great viewpoint on the western shores of Ullswater. Heron Crag, at the eastern end of the summit plateau, is the best viewpoint for Ullswater, while from the summit itself the view is dominated by the Helvellyn range. Sadly on the day that I did the walk Helvellyn was hidden in the clouds, but to prove the view exists, here is a picture I took from the summit of Helvellyn, showing Sheffield Pike.
We start from the National Trust car park just north of Glencoyne Bridge.
Just south of the bridge a track leaves the road to the right, heading west into Glencoyne. Turn right and follow this track towards the farm at Glencoyne. Follow the track most of the way through the farm. At the end of the main block of buildings, follow the signposted footpath as it turns left and passes between two buildings, before curving back to the right and continues on to the west, running up the valley.
This path runs along the valley towards Seldom Seen, a small row of cottages. Just past the cottages, it curves a little to the left, and begins to climb rather more steeply up the side of the valley, heading towards the western end of the forest on the southern side of the valley.
This path climbs up until it reaches the northern edge of Glenridding, above Glenridding Screes, where it joins another path climbing up out of that valley. Turn right and follow this path as it climbs up towards the top of Sheffield Pike. There are moments on this path where it appears to heading out over ghastly drops, but thankfully isn't - in each case a few more steps reveal hidden slopes or a rapid turn away!
After a steep but short climb, our path reaches the summit plateau. The main path runs straight across the top up the cairn, but it is worth taking a diversion to the right to visit Heron Crag, which is a great viewpoint overlooking Ullswater.
After visiting Heron Pike, follow the main path up to the summit cairn. From the summit the path onwards is clearly visible, running west towards the saddle between Sheffield Pike and Stybarrow Dodd. Follow this path down to the saddle.