The Glaramara Wainwrights

Situated south of Keswick in Borrowdale, Glaramara is the central fell on a 5.5km (3.4 miles) long ridge from near Rosthwaite running south west to Lower Esk Hause. To the east lies Langstrath, and the west is Grains Gill and Seathwaite. Along the ridge Wainwright determined three summits appropriate for his pictorial guides, Bessyboot, Glaramara, and Allen Crags. They make for a fine walk and good introduction to this complicated and rocky ground.

The northern end of the ridge splits, the main part dropping steeply to the road near Rosthwaite, and is known as Rosthwaite Fell with the little summit top called Bessyboot. The intriguingly named Tarn at Leaves sits in a hollow below the summit. It is a shallow tarn with reeds and sedges at its edges, and thought to be no more than 5m deep. An outfall drops via Tansey Gill to Langstrath. Heading south west the ridge is knotted with many rocky obstructions and boggy hollows. An easy path skirts most difficulties but in places it is faint and difficult to follow. Lined with precipitous crags this ridge is not a place to be caught in poor weather. The minor northern spur, known as Thornythwaite Fell, branches just below Glaramara summit and hides the hanging valley of Combe Gill from all but the most astute passers by on the Borrowdale road. This pretty valley provides a couple of suitable ways of ascent on to the ridge, one of which we use in this walk.

From the north west the summit of Glaramara is well protected by crags, its cairn may be attained by skirting around the eastern side over considerably easier ground. From Glaramara a clear path undulates south west, falling and climbing again five times, until the summit of Allen Crags just 2m higher is reached.

The southern end of the ridge terminates at Lower Esk Hause on the through route between Langdale and Wasdale via Sty Head. Returning to Borrowdale can be accomplished by following either Styhead Gill or Grains Gill, to Seathwaite. Most walkers will already be well acquainted with Styhead Gill so this walk takes the opportunity of a quieter walk down beside the latter's precipitous edges.

We start this walk at the National Trust Seatoller car park. Alternatively you can park on the Seathwaite road and use the Allerdale Ramble path to avoid some of the road. There is also a bus service, the 77 Honister Rambler amongst others, but check the timetables as especially in winter the last bus can be early in the day.