Grey Crag from Harrop Pike

The upper reaches of Grey Crag as viewed from Harrop Pike, with Morecambe Bay behind.

Height: 2093 feet above sea level

Volume: Book 2 (The Far Eastern Fells)

Date climbed: First visit: 12th March 2012 (walk 53). Second visit: 7th September 2016 (walk 117).

Bagged as numberFirst round: 165 of 330. This makes Grey Crag the halfway point of my first Wainwright round. [ << Tarn Crag (164)  (166) Dale Head >> ]

Second round: 68 of 330. [ << Bannisdale Horseshoe (part) (64-67)  (69) Tarn Crag >> ]

Route of ascent and descent: First visit: Approached via the ridge from Tarn Crag. Descended to Sadgill (then had to walk back from there to Staveley).

Grey Crag summit

Grey Crag summit, and walk 117’s excessively large bag

Second round: Came up via one of the Bannisdale Horseshoe ridges, via White Howe (see page Grey Crag 5). Left on the ridge to Tarn Crag.

What Mr Wainwright says (from page 2 of his chapter): “There is nothing remarkable about Grey Crag, but here Lakeland may be said to start and moorland country to end – and the transition is sudden: the quiet beauty gives place to romantic beauty, placid scenery to exciting. One looks east, and the heart is soothed: west, and it is stirred. Longsleddale, at the western base of the fell, is a lovely valley and, at its head, typically Lakeland.”

What I say: On my first visit to the summit the very top of the fell was in cloud and I missed the view, which Wainwright (on p. 5) claims might be one of the best views in the country. On my second visit, I got it; and yeah, pretty good. There are more paths on it now than in Wainwright’s day which clearly makes it a more accessible fell, though do watch out for a really soggy peat bog on the way from it to Tarn Crag.

Harrop Pike summit

Harrop Pike summit cairn.

Because so many of the Outlying Fells lie close by to Grey Crag, constituting its supporting ridges (namely the Bannisdale Horseshoe, Crookdale Horseshoe and Wasdale Horseshoe chapters), I have been in this area several times since, before actually revisiting Grey Crag’s summit. One can get quite near to it, for example, the cairn on top of Harrop Pike (pictured), on several walks. This is remote territory, but worth a visit on a clear day. The view is definitely good, although there are several I would rank higher (High Pike or Black Combe for instance).

Not to be confused with: Gray Crag, with an A, which is not too far away.

[ << Green Quarter Fell      Grey Friar >> ]


2 Responses to “Grey Crag”

  1. […] 53 was done yesterday and saw me bag the two easternmost Wainwrights, Tarn Crag and Grey Crag. Unfortunately, the weather was once again disappointing, despite a good forecast – low cloud […]

  2. […] Fells (Bannisdale Horseshoe, Howes, Naddle Horseshoe) and three from the Far Eastern Fells (Grey Crag, Tarn Crag, Selside Pike). This boosts the total to 74 done from my second round, meaning I have […]

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