Sheffield Pike

Map for walk up Sheffield PikeThis 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.

Sheffield Pike from HelvellynAscent: 1,750ft/ 535m
Length: 4.3 miles/ 6.8km
Map: Explorer 05 English Lakes North East
Last Walked: 13 October 2007

We start from the National Trust car park just north of Glencoyne Bridge.

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Unfortunately no paths begin at the Glencoyne Car Park, so we have to begin with a short stretch on the road. Head south along the road, with the lake to the left, crossing over Glencoyne Bridge.
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GlencoyneJust 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.

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Black CragOur path eventually reaches the western edge of the trees just beyond a stone wall. Here there is a crossroads in the path. We will be returning along the path that runs east-west along the valley, but for the moment we want the smaller (but still distinct) path that climbs up the hillside to the south, running along the side of the trees. This path gets more obvious the further it climbs.
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Heron PikeWe follow this path for about a third of mile, until we reach the top of the climb and a junction in the path. Here the left hand branch continues along the wall, dropping down towards Glenridding Dodd. We want the right hand branch, which cuts diagonally across the eastern slopes of Sheffield Pike.
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Glenridding from aboveThis 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!

Ullswater from Sheffield PikeAfter 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.

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Nick HeadJust before the very bottom of the saddle we reach a path that leads down into Glencoyne. Turn right onto this path, and follow it as it curves around to the right, around the northern slopes of Sheffield Dodd. There are a couple of moments near the start where this path appears to be heading out into the void, but this is just an optical illusion - the path is actually perfectly safe.
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Bleabank SideWe follow this path all the way back to the crossroads we first met at step 3. This time head straight across this crossroads into the woods. This path runs close to the northern edge of the trees, before reaching the track that leads from Seldom Seen to the main road. Follow this track all the way back to the road.
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We now have to return to the car park along the line of the main road. At least to start with there is a permissive footpath that runs between the road and the lake, so follow this until it runs out. We then have to follow the road back to the car park.


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