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Helm Crag, Grasmere

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Helm Crag is a fell in the English Lake District situated in the Central Fells to the north of Grasmere. Despite its low height it sits prominently at the end of a ridge, easily seen from the village. This, combined with the distinctive summit rocks which provide the alternative name 'The Lion and the Lamb', makes it one of the most recognised hills in the District.Alfred Wainwright wrote of Helm Crag that "The virtues of Helm Crag have not been lauded enough. It gives an exhilarating little climb, a brief essay in real mountaineering, and, in a region where all is beautiful, it makes a notable contribution to the natural charms and attractions of Grasmere."TopographyA rocky ridge curves east and then south east from Calf Crag, passing over Gibson Knott and the depression of Bracken Hause, before ending at Helm Crag where it falls steeply on all sides. To the north and east of the ridge is the Greenburn valley, which joins the Rothay at Helm Side. To the west and south is Easedale Beck, which is also a feeder of the Rothay, the watersmeet being just north of Grasmere village. Helm Crag is generally rough, with particular features being High and Low Raven Crags on the eastern side and White Crag on the southern extremity.GeologyThe geology of the fell is complex, but the summit is in an area of outcropping andesite sill.SummitThe summit is unusual, having two short parallel ridges running north west to south east with a hollow in between, the western ridge being the higher. Some distance below the eastern ridge the scene is repeated as, still keeping parallel, a third ridge, ditch and parapet are crossed before the crags are reached. The whole complex initially appears man-made, but is entirely natural. The summit commands views of the Langdale Pikes, Coniston Fells and Eastern Fells.
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Helm Crag Reviews
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  • Though steep, most of the ascent is paved with steps and stones, making it a manageable, if arduous, climb, providing a magnificent view of Grasmere and further afield.  more »
  • Unfortunately it rained very heavily on our walk making the scrambling part of the walk quite slippery. The views were amazing despite the rain obscuring them somewhat. I hope to return in better weat...  more »
  • This is, of course, such a well known and iconic walk. The rewards for the climb from Grasmere are some scintillating views in all directions. The famous Lion and the Lamb formation always intrigues m...  more »

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