Mountain Journeys

Jack’s Rake Scramble, Pavey Ark – simply the best


Jack's Rake Scramble - From Stickle Tarn


Jack’s Rake Scramble, Pavey Ark

This grade 1 rock scramble makes for a wonderful mountain day and is easily combined with nearby routes to make for longer trips into the mountains.

It’s about an hours walk from the Stickle Barn parking areas and if wanting more time on rock,  the best start is to take to the ghyll that runs alongside the main footpath. This is also a grade 1 scramble and very escapable at almost any point.

Once at Stickle Tarn, the full scale of Pavey Ark comes into view and is impressive, even a little intimidating, such is its vastness. Look carefully at the crag and the line of weakness taken by Jack’s Rake can be seen. Wow, what a way up a mountain.

Walking either way around Stickle Tarn works just fine and when below the large scree fan head up this to reach the base of the scramble. We’d advise wearing helmets from this point onwards as rockfall from sheep / climbers / walkers is an ever present possibility.

The route ahead is fairly obvious for most of the way, simply follow the deep trough in the cliff. The initial section in particular has a plethora of loose rock, so test every hold prior to use and take a steady approach to the scramble, there’s no rush huh.

There is one notable tricky section that comes early on, and this needs care due to the exposed position, but handholds are always plentiful. Then a level section section marks the halfway point and what follows is what many would consider the crux of the route. A few awkward moves that can feel a squeeze as well as being very exposed. Careful and considered movement will pay dividends here.

Above this is another easing as the route heads towards a canon shaped rock. Clamber around this - left is best - to reach more straightforward terrain as the route wiggles around steeper areas of cliff. Generally trend left and soon stiffer moves will present themselves to you. These all require care. The general aim now is to reach the large triangular shaped rock on the left horizon. There are numerous ways of getting there, all are fun. To make the scrambling easier stay lower to reach this, and to spice things up aim higher.

Once beside the big triangle, it’s possible and recommended to continue scrambling rightwards on impeccable rock to reach the summit of Pavey Ark. The rock here is some of the finest in the Lake District, as sticky as the stickiest velcro!

From Pavey Ark why not stay high and link all the Langdale Pikes before returning back to the valley for some cake at the Lanty Slee to round off the perfect day

If interested in tackling Jack’s Rake or any other Lakeland rock scrambles, we’d be delighted to offer help and advice, and we can provide mountain guides too, should you wish. Here’s more about the activities we offer here in the Lake District.

Please do get in touch if we can help in any way.

Thanks for reading



Jack's Rake Scramble - the crux section



After Jack's Rake scramble, there's plenty more to do



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