13/10/2020

Scafell Pike Best Walk - The Corridor Route to England's highest Mountain summit from Seathwaite, Borrowdale in the Lake District


Scafell Pike walk Corridor route map height climbing best route up, Seathwaite Lake District Lakes Wasdale 3 peaks
You’ll get incredible views like this on a Scafell Pike walk. There are quite a few walking routes up to Scafell Pike - but the Corridor Route from Seathwaite is the best way in my humble opinion and is often referred to as the Connoisseurs route (as those experienced in walking the various Scafell Pike routes will recommend this particular route). You may well only ever climb Scafell Pike once in your life, so make sure you choose this best walk route & way up, and not the more popular & shorter route from Wasdale which has a lot less variety.


Scafell Pike Corridor Route walk summary:


Scafell Pike Walk Distance: 8.4 miles (13.6ksm)

Scafell Pike Walk Time: 6 hours

Scafell Pike Walk Difficulty: Hard 

(It's a long, steep hike in sections and shouldn't be underestimated. In saying that there is nothing too technical required, ie. scrambling (using your hands) or climbing (using ropes etc) So if you have good fitness, mobility and time - then I would thoroughly recommend this route to climb to Englands highest mountain.



Scafell Pike walk map, via the Corridor Route from Seathwaite in the Lake District:

Scafell Pike walk route map height Lake district lakes best
This is my favourite route up Scafell Pike from Seathwaite via the Corridor Route, which I think has the best and most varied views. If you where only going to climb Scafell Pike once - I'd recommend this route. This walk is 8.4 miles and takes around 6 hours with various stops (3 hours up,  and 3 hours down!). It's best done in an anti-clockwise direction - taking in Styhead Tarn and the Corridor Route to the summit of Scafell Pike and back down via Broad Crag, Esk House & Grains Gill. It's a long route - so I advise viewing the interactive OS map on the link below.


If you don't have a Phone Map App - I really recommend the one by Ordnance Survey. For walking routes such as this one where multiple paths cross and you can easily take a wrong turn and end up in a different valley, the App means you can download route maps to your phone, such as this one, and the app will show you exactly where you are on the route even when you have no signal!


 

Here you can see the total elevation and distance of this walk - with a gentler return from the summit which is why I recommend tackling it in an anti-clockwise direction - taking in Styhead Tarn and the Corridor route first. I also think the variety of views are best enjoyed in this direction.




How high is Scafell Pike?

At 968m (3,209ft), Scafell Pike is England's highest mountain and is located in the Lake District National Park in Cumbria. Every hiker in the UK will want to summit the UK's 3 tallest mountains; Ben Nevis (in Scotland), Mount Snowdon (in Wales) & Scafell Pike (in England). Some will try and do them all in 24 hours in the 3 Peaks challenge - but I'm someone who likes to enjoy his walks and the scenery they have to offer and take a few photos along the way - so I'll choose the best, most scenic & interesting routes, rather than the quickest. This route to Scafell Pike featured on this blog post is just that - the best route to hike to the summit of Scafell Pike. 


How long does the Corridor route take Scafell Pike?

A Scafell Pike walk via Corridor Route takes around 5-6 hours and is 8.4 miles. This is the most scenic and interesting Scafell Pike walk


Is Scafell Pike easy to climb?

A Scafell Pike walk via the more well-known routes requires no particular climbing expertise and is just a long and at times a steep walk. If you have a reasonable level of fitness and walking experience you will be just fine. Just plan accordingly as the weather is a big factor in how easy the walk is. It's obviously much easier in dry weather, and more difficult in rain, wind and dangerous in snow.



Scafell Pike walk Corridor route from Seathwaite, Borrowdale, Lake District cumbria how long fastest
Read on to learn about the best Scafell Pike walk route from Seathwaite, Borrowdale



Photos of what to expect on this superb Scafell Pike walk, via the Corridor Route:


Scafell Pike walk Corridor route map height climbing best route up, Seathwaite Lake District Lakes Wasdale 3 peaks
This Scafell Pike walk via the Corridor Route starts from the farm near Seathwaite, where there is ample, free parking on the roadside (but it does get quite busy on weekends and in the warmer months - so try and get their early). On this occasion it was a cold & fresh autumnal morning, with clear skies to start with and a dusting of frost on the ground and a 9am start. 



We got lucky with the weather on the day of this Scafell Pike walk with clear skies and myself and 5 mates set off along the short road to Seathwaite Farm.


Scafell Pike walk Corridor route map height climbing best route up, Seathwaite Lake District Lakes Wasdale 3 peaks
This Scafell Pike walk starts off gradual, always a plus point to get you warmed up! The other well known Scafell Pike walk from Wasdale starts of steep straight away and doesn't let up so it's a bit of a slog - which is one of the reasons I like this Corridor Route as the terrain is more varied and enjoyable, with lost of different views around every corner.

Scafell Pike walk Corridor route map height climbing best route up, Seathwaite Lake District Lakes Wasdale 3 peaks
You can tell autumn is setting in with the bracken turning a nice burnt shade of brown

Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
About to cross Stockley Bridge with Seathwaite fell in the background

Looking back over the route we've just walked and we start to gain height quite quickly now.

Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
Our first glimpse of Scafell Pike to the left of centre. It doesn't look the tallest peak but is set back a bit from the other summits.

Styhead Tarn Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
Styhead Tarn looking serene and it's a nice place to stop and refuel for the walking route ahead to Scafell Pike.

Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
Hopefully won't be needing this today! Behind the Stretcher Box and straight above it you can see the summit of Scafell Pike in the centre, which again doesn't look the tallest in the range from this angle. This stretcher box marks the key point where we take a left turn to the Corridor Route.

Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
You soon gain height and get good views of Styhead Tarn 

Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
Scaffel Pike in the distance and reflected in this pond 


Just about to begin the Corridor Route to Scafell Pike here 

Onwards and upwards on this walk - the ravine of Piers Gill straight ahead but we'll be avoiding that today!

Scafell Pike walk Corridor route map height climbing best route up, Seathwaite Lake District Lakes Wasdale 3 peaks
You can just about make out the Corridor Route path going diagonal from left to right on this photo

Piers Gill
Piers Gill looks quite foreboding here and Piers Gill is where most accidents happen up this way so it’s best avoided unless you are an experienced mountaineer.

Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
Looking back to Styhead Tarn via the Corridor Route we have just walked.

This is probably the trickiest section of the path on this Scafell Pike walk and you'll need to use your hands on a few occasions but it's nothing too difficult.


Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
Looking back again - with Derwent Water just coming into view in the distance above Styhead Tarn


Great Gable Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
You get excellent views of Great Gable up here - another excellent walk in itself if you haven’t done it before 


Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
The stunning Lake District views keep on coming! This is where we join the more popular path from Wasdale to walk to the top of Scafell Pike 

We are joined by lots more walkers from Wasdale now and as you can see it's a bit of a slog and much busier - which is why I much prefer the Corridor Route to Scafell Pike over the route from Wasdale.



Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
A few people are trying to make the most of the clear views today and there are plenty more people about as we approach the summit of Scafell Pike

Wastwater Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
We now get great views of Wastwater and the Wasdale area where many Scafell Pike walkers come from. In the far distance we could actually see the Isle of Man over the Irish Sea - stunning!


Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
We are nearly at the summit of Scafell Pike now and the views are incredible on this walk - yo are literally at the top of England  

Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
Not far now - one final push and it's much more windier at the summit!

Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
This is what is at the top of Scafell Pike looks like and the highest point in England!

View Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
Looking from the summit of Scafell Pike at 978m. Momentarily I'm the highest man standing in England :-) 

View Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
From up here looking north-east you can make out the well-known Lake District mountains of Skiddaw and Helvellyn

After a good 20 minutes eating some food and enjoying a flask of hot coffee sheltered in the wind it's time to head back a different route towards Broad Crag, which entails going down a little bit and then back up!

Scafell Pike walk Corridor route map height climbing best route up, Seathwaite Lake District Lakes Wasdale 3 peaks
The elderly veteran in our group using his sticks :-)


Scafell Pike walk Corridor route map height climbing best route up, Seathwaite Lake District Lakes Wasdale 3 peaks
You can just about see Windermere from this viewpoint

Scafell Pike walk Corridor route map height climbing best route up, Seathwaite Lake District Lakes Wasdale 3 peaks
It's a bit steep this way and hard on the old knees but worth it

Scafell Pike walk Corridor route map height climbing best route up, Seathwaite Lake District Lakes Wasdale 3 peaks
After descending Scafell Pike for 15 mins or so we are faced with the final bit of uphil on this walk

Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
Looking back towards the summit of Scafell Pike and the path we have just walked down

Russ entertaining himself while we all catch up

A little glimpse of Styhead Tarn again but that's the last we will see of it on this walk

Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
Looking back towards Scafell Pike summit again. We passed quite a few walkers going the opposite way to us - but I really recommend going the direction we have taken today, tackling the Corridor Route first.

A glimpse of the Langdale Pikes to the right of this cairn - as you can see the views are many and varied on this Scafell Pike walk - whereas from Wasdale the views are quite samey.

It's all downhill now on this walk - thankfully! Derwent Water and Skiddaw in the distance is in sight!

We now follow Grains Gill all the way down - and I much prefer going down this way than up!

Scafell Pike walk Corridor route map height climbing best route up, Seathwaite Lake District Lakes Wasdale 3 peaks
Nearly done - and we can see the car from here! Unfortunately we can’t see a pub from here ;-) 


Scafell Pike walk Corridor route map height climbing best route up, Seathwaite Lake District Lakes Wasdale 3 peaks
We cross over Grains Gill for the 2nd last time n this walk and the going is much easier.


Scafell Pike walk routes height climbing corridor route, the best route up, Seathwaite, Elevation, Hotels, Campsites Lake District
And here we are again at Stockley Bridge where we started around 5.5 hours ago and we rejoin the path we started on for the last bit of this superb Scafell Pike walk



And that is that! I hope this write up has given you a good introduction to what is the best Scafell Pike walking route in my humble opinion and it inspires you to want to give this awesome Corridor Route a go! It is quite a long route and at times can be hard to follow the map and a lot of path's intercross each other. So just make sure you are very familiar with the route. You hear countless stories of people taking one wrong turn and ending up in a different valley miles from where they need to be! 

Phone Map Apps are really useful for downloading routes to your phone and then being able to see exactly where you are on the map without phone or internet signal. I've been really impressed by the OS Maps app and for a walk such as this is well worth the investment and will keep you right on track, click the banner below to find out more (and you can download the Scafell Pike route to your phone form the full map route link near the top of this page. 



 

Video introduction to this Scafell Pike Walk: 

Finally - if you are really interested in this route - have a watch of this short video below to give you another little taster on what to expect on my recommended Scafell Pike walk via the Corridor Route:




Happy Hiking!



Post by Stuart Hodgson 
'The Hiking Photographer'


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