Lake District Walks
Seathwaite Fell & Sprinkling Tarn
Date: 30th July 2011
Distance: 2.3 miles
Ascent: 1681 feet
Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
Start Grid Ref: NY235122
The first part of a two day walk this was a simple climb up on to Seathwaite Fell before pitching our tents at Sprinkling Tarn.
Route Summary: Seathwaite - Stockley Bridge - Styhead Gill - Seathwaite Fell (Wainwright Summit) - Seathwaite Fell (Main Summit) - Seathwaite Fell (South Top) - Sprinkling Tarn
1. Seathwaite Fell
2. Looking up Grains Gill from Stockley Bridge
3. Matt on the steep climb on to Seathwaite Fell
4. On Seathwaite Fell (Wainwright's summit)
5. Matt on the true summit of Seathwaite Fell
6. Great End and Sprinkling Tarn from Seathwaite Fell's south top
7. Great Gable
9. Pitching our tents by Sprinkling Tarn
10. Supper time
Walk Detail: The ultimate aim of this short evening walk was to reach Sprinkling Tarn, the location we had agreed upon to pitch our tents on my first wild camp.
Due to unforeseen problems we arrived in Seathwaite somewhat later than expected with the sun already beginning to dip behind the Western Fells to leave much of Borrowdale in the shadows. The initial path south from Seathwaite to Stockley Bridge was easy but once over the bridge, where the path begins to climb, I soon began to appreciate the extra weight I was carrying.
Whilst the easiest route to Sprinkling Tarn would probably have been via Sty Head or Grains Gill we went for the mainly pathless ascent described by Wainwright which follows a nameless stream just south west of Aaron Crags. It was a steep climb but it did have the advantage of leading almost directly to Wainwright's favoured summit for Seathwaite Fell.
It should be noted here that I had previously visited the highest point of Seathwaite four years previously but, as someone who is closing in on completing the Wainwrights, it has always bothered me that I hadn't visited the 601m summit given by Wainwright. It was a good spot with an excellent view of Borrowdale but it is so obviously overtopped by nearby ground that it cannot really be classed as the summit of the fell.
The true summit of Seathwaite Fell at 632m was our next objective and was closely followed by the south top at 631m which had a good view of Sprinkling Tarn backed by Great End, easily the most impressive fell on show. From the south top it was then a very simple stroll down to Sprinkling Tarn where, at 9.15pm, as the light was beginning to fade, we pitched our tents.