Helvellyn, 18-19 January 2020

We got to the Lakes late in the evening, as always. We left the car in a lay-by, climbed some 300 m, found a nice flat and dry spot by Glencoyne Beck and pitched our tent. It was not as cold as during our previous outing but we took a spare sleeping bag just in case.

The blue and red lines show our track in the first and second days, respectively.

The spare sleeping bag made our camp warm and cozy, and we did not wake up until half-eight or so. The sun has not reached us yet.

The hills above us were covered by snow.

The higher we got, the more snow we saw. Ullswater is far below.

When we got to the plateau, the sun came out. Helvellyn is in the middle of the picture.

The plateau was all covered by snow, as if this was a different planet.

Great Dodd on the left, and behind it - clouded Blencathra.

We walked on the plateau towards Helvellyn. We started seeing people: runners, bikers, mountaineers with crampons and ice axes, and walkers. We were the only ones with skis.

Frozen water.

We are walking up Stybarrow Dodd.

Snow everywhere.

When we got to White Side, the clouds enveloped a distant ridge.

Frost crystals on the grass.

Victor skied down from Raise. The snow cover was very thin but this grassy slope was just about skiable.

A wide path leads to Lower Man. The grass is all sparkling in the sun.

Catstye Cam. We could have climbed it on the way down but we decided that we had enough.

The weather broke. Helvellyn got clouded over. The sun is still visible through the clouds.

When we finally made it to Helvellyn, the visbility was very poor. The wind got quite strong and it turned much colder. We put on our crampons and went down Swirral Edge.

There were quite a few other walkers but most had crampons and ice axes, so everybody progressed swiftly and there were no queues.

An easy path down from Swirral Edge, with a view of Red Tarn below. We walked down, then followed a path to cross a little ridge just before Glenridding and got straight to our car.

Sunset above Ullswater.

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