Pike of Blisco and Cold Pike from Great Langdale.

Start. Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel.

Route. Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel - Redacre Gill - Wrynose Fell - Pike Of Blisco - Red Tarn - Red Tarn Moss - Cold Pike - Black Wars - Brown Howe - Oxendale - Stool End - Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel.

Notes. Guarding the pass between Little Langdale and it's bigger brother Great Langdale stands Pike of Blisco, a shapely hill with an irresistible name, the summit cairn on view from the valley floor acts like a beacon drawing walkers to it's craggy heights. It may not be the highest of Langdale's many fine hills but your efforts will be rewarded with sublime views. My second summit Cold Pike rising from the deep defile containing Red Tarn is proud to boast three rocky tops, all rarely visited. The first time I graced this summit it was mid January, I remember it well and am convinced it's the coldest place on Earth.

The National Trust provides safe parking next to the Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel. My route followed the valley road in the direction of Little Langdale, I was soon climbing the steep pass into Little Langdale, the waters of Redacre Gill for company, when the gill left the road I did likewise, a narrow trod then ushered me up the hill. Boggy at first then steep followed by lots more steep, steep ended as I crested the edge of Wrynose Fell. The path that guided me swung west, I swung with it, after two easy scrambles I found myself sitting on the summit soaking up views drinking tea contemplating my next move.

My next move was a descent to Red Tarn, followed by a walk south along it's shore, this I did. A faint path then guided me over Red Tarn Moss, relatively dry under foot meaning energy levels were high for the ascent of Cold Pike's south ridge, with the faint path still under foot I ascended to the highest of the summits. Again I sat drinking tea, but this time I knew where my next move would take me. North I wandered to join the main path traversing the Crinkle Crags, I turned my back on the saw tooth ridge heading back towards Red Tarn, on reaching a major path junction I turned left to start a long exhilarating descent to the valley floor.

Through deep cut gills I descended, high above Browney Gill with dizzy views to the beck bottom, across the Black Wars screes I traversed before reaching Brown Howe, I sat down but my flask was dry. The path then safely guided me into Oxendale, the boulder strewn Oxendale Beck was forded via a fine foot-bridge, then a stoney track directed me to Stool End, from Stool End it was easy walking along the farm lane, my sights set on the Walkers Bar at the Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel.

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Towering above Langdale the climbing cliffs of Raven Crag with Loft Crag top left and the dome of Pike of Stickle far left.

The cliff, rock and scrub of Kettle Crag with Pike of Blisco behind.

Dramatic rock scenery, the Langdale Pikes dominate Great Langdale.

Seen from the lower slopes of Pike of Blisco, Side Pike.

Across the divide of Oxendale mighty Bow Fell with the Crinkle Crags to the left.

Stunning views over Great Langdale as seen from the upper slopes of Pike of Blisco.

Breath-taking views to the south, over Blake Rigg just visible Windermere Lake.

The upper slopes of Pike of Blisco provide a fine viewpoint, across the skyline the Helvellyn massif, with Fairfield and it's lieutenants, St Sunday Crag, Seat Sandal and Great Rigg to the right.

Wonderful views to the Langdale Pikes, from left to right, Pike of Stickle the pointed one, in shadow to it's right Loft Crag, right again Harrison Stickle and the rock walls of Pavey Ark, it doesn't get much better than that.

Rising into the southern skies, Wetherlam, Swirl How and Great Carrs, in shadow the long ridge of Wet Side Edge.

Near the summit of Pike of Blisco enjoying a wonderful panorama across southern Lakeland.

Viewing Red Tarn and Cold Pike from the stoney summit of Pike of Blisco.

Adventures for another day, the Crinkle Crags and Bow Fell.

The many summits of Cold Pike seen from the descent from Pike of Blisco.

Towards shadowed Bow Fell from Red Tarn Moss.

Blue/grey on the skyline Skiddaw, with Pike of Stickle visible over the Black Wars cliffs.

Looking to Harter Fell across Eskdale.

The summit Cold Pike looking to Pike of Blisco.

Descending in the shadow of Black Wars.

Passing above Browney Gill, with Crinkle Crags and Bow Fell to take my mind off the drop just below my feet.

The boulder strewn stream bed of Oxendale Beck.

Dappled light on White Crag and Raven Crag, with Pike of Stickle and Loft Crag top left.

Kettle Crag and Pike of Blisco with Great Knott far right.

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