Walking the Lakes – Dungeon Ghyll to Stickle Tarn

There are a number of walks and hikes throughout the Lake District; enough for a lifetime of exploration. At Gear Guru we love discovering what the world has to offer and any time spent in this stunning part of England is met with incredible scenery wherever you look. We opted for a walking route that takes in Harrison Sickle and Blea Rigg before culminating at Stickle Tarn before the return descent.

Packing light for this walk is advised but ensure you take the essentials; so plenty of water, high energy food; and depending on the time of year it can get chilly at the summits so things like hats, gloves and maybe a shell jacket will be welcome as the temperature starts to drop. Also carry maps of the area and a compass with you even if you do prefer GPS maps on your smartphone as signals in the area can be intermittent at times so it’s always good to have a backup.

Starting the ascent – Dungeon Ghyll & Harrison Stickle

Located in Great Langdale, this walk has a couple of different routes up with the starting point typically being beside Dungeon Ghyll. Handily there is a National Trust car park near the New Dungeon Ghyll hotel so if you aren’t staying nearby it is easy to park up, or alternatively use the 516 bus service that routinely goes by and through Langdale.

The start of the walk up takes you along a path past the Stickle Ghyll sign. Follow the path until you see the wide path to the left and go through the kissing gate. Once you reach the wall, turn right, cross the step and go left towards Dungeon Ghyll. Now follow the rocky path up to the knoll up at the top.

Now on the main path go left over the damp plateau that is located under Thorn Crag. Follow the path ahead despite some rough-looking terrain as it will clear up for an easy ascent, then head on up to the summit. From here a sudden left followed by a right takes you across Dungeon Ghyll. Left again will lead to the paths under Harrison Stickle. The routes is more of a challenge with rock steps and cairns to signal the way. On reaching the summit of Harrison Stickle which is to the left you can see some incredible views all around.

Thunacar Knott

When leaving Harrison Stickle; head left and down the rock path that goes to the right. There is some boggy terrain to cross here so be careful, but the path becomes quick rocky again; leading the way to Thunacar Knott. Once you’ve reached the summit which can be found on the left hand side of a cairn on the higher ground you will need to climb your way on grassy slopes. There are boggy areas here so the marked path thins out so you may need to take things a little slow. At the top the path becomes clear again and heads to High Raise.

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Sergeant Mann

Next take a right to find a narrower path that takes you across marshland. Keep to the right of the tarn and you will eventually be able to see the next stop; Sergeant Mann. The ground will begin to be less wet and the path more visible here until you reach a rocky part that takes you to the summit.

Blea Rigg

Bear left from Sergeant Mann onto the ridge and at the bottom, heading right will take you across a beck. Going right from here will take you on a wide ridge that leads to broken rocks and terrain. This is more difficult to hike and is the longest stretch. The ground will suddenly drop down so you need to walk on the left hand side of a sizeable flat rock which you can’t miss. On from here the path leads right past a knoll, then you’ll see a cairn after a time on the ridge in the south-easterly direction. As you head towards it there is a patch of boggy land, just go around this and turn left when you reach the cairn. Follow the path below some knotted ground, then go over a small hollow in the ground and up to Blea Rigg.

Stickle Tarn

To reach Stickle Tarn from Blea Rigg you need to retrace your steps back to the small cairn. From here head left and follow the narrow path that leads towards the Langdale Pikes. You will find the clarity of the path wildly varies along here but Stickle Tarn is in view unless the weather isn’t too good so the aforementioned map and compass may come in handy. When you arrive at Stickle Tarn head left along the edge of the dam. Take care as it gets slippery, so stop to take in the brilliant views before heading back towards Stickle Ghyll.

Adventure in The Lakes

Stickle Ghyll & Descent

The path is a bit tricky around here at first as there are a lot of larger rocks and boulders to traverse, but once you reach the stepping stones you can head down the path which is still steep but easier than higher up. The water either side leads into the stunning view below and back to the step stile, then on towards the car park.

The whole walk will take an experienced walker under 4 hours to complete and we hope if you decide to follow this route you enjoy the experience with the incredible landscape that surrounds you with every step.