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Helvellyn & Red Tarn

A walk up Helvellyn ?


Like Ullswater itself, uncertainty surrounds the origin of the name Helvellyn. It might be as old as when the various Brythonic languages, such as Cumbric were prevalent in this region. The name of the area then was Hen Ogledd ( The Old North ). Whatever the origin, it’s now a very popular day trek.

Patterdale Mountain Rescue photo of Helvellyn

 photo available at Patterdale Mountain Rescue

You can approach Helvellyn from many directions. There are two main, popular, routes up. Thirlmere side, and Ullswater side, which can include Red Tarn, Striding Edge & Swirrel Edge.

Focus ?

On every day out on the fell the focus is a personal decision. If ‘ getting to the top ‘ is your aim, please remember that in reality that’s just half-time. The second half of getting back down again, without incident, is far more important.

View of Ullswater while coming down the fell

The focus of ‘ Having a great day out ‘ is the mindset of thousands of very experienced hikers. The weather, or other issue might mean coming down again sooner than planned. First, you just made the correct decision, second, the fell will still be there when you decide to return.

Patterdale Mountain Rescue have an excellent website with all sorts of information.

Plane landing

Around 40 metres south of the summit there stands a small stone marker. It represents the landing on 22nd December 1926 of two men. Bert Hinkler, and John Leeming in an Avro biplane. It was third time lucky for the duo with the weather. They had to cancel two previous attempts. On landing, they asked a bystander to sign a piece of paper verifying the event. They then took off again and headed back to their base, just to the south of Manchester.

Hinkler later became the first person to fly solo from England to Australia in 1928. The journey taking just over two weeks.

The plane that landed on Helvellyn