Lake District walks, around Braithwaite near Keswick

The links from this page take you to pictures of the walk in question, with sometimes a further description. The pictures on the website are suitable for display on a computer screen, and are often not high enough resolution for a good result if printed out. If you would like to print out a picture, send me an email, and I will send you a higher resolution version (if I have one, of course).  Please note however that, especially with the more recent pictures, if you click on a picture, you are likely in any case to get a much higher resolution version - my camera has improved, and I am assuming that most of you will now have broadband links to download large files quickly.
You are welcome to copy and use the pictures, but where relevant please credit the photographer - Peter Rigg. If you use the pictures on your web-site, I would appreciate a link from your site to either or both of mine: www.braithwaite-walks.co.uk and www.braithwaite-cottage.co.uk.

Click here for how the walks described below map onto the area around Braithwaite.

Take a look at some of the photos in the links below, and you will understand why people come to the Lakes in the winter......

Easy walks: up to 2 miles, and little or no gradient.

  1. Around the camp site. At the downstream bridge near the village shop, walk towards Keswick and, after about 50 metres, take the path to the right of the first house.
  2. Via Little Braithwaite. At the further end of the camp site (see easy walk 1), cross a stile and carry on across the wooden bridge to Little Braithwaite farm. At the little road there, either turn right up a short, steep hill to return via the road - be careful with the traffic - or turn left and join the footpath to the left at the bridge. Where the footpath meets the A66, turn back left for Braithwaite.
  3. Into the Newlands Valley. At Little Braithwaite (see easy walk 2), turn left, and then right at the bridge to walk along the Newlands Beck (which lengthens the walk by about 45 minutes but, this being the most beautiful pastoral valley in England, the views are well worth it); cross the beck at the first bridge, eventually turning right along the metalled road above Uzzicar Farm. After about 300 yards take the path climbing gradually to the left above the wood, which lands you at Braithwaite Lodge farm and thence back to the village. Or you can do the walk in reverse. See the list of medium walks for longer walks in the valley.
  4. To Thornthwaite. Go across the bridge, turn left up the road to Whinlatter and, at the first right bend, go right at a kissing gate marked as a public footpath. Keep to the left of the youth centre ahead, and follow the path through the woods. Thornthwaite has an artists' gallery which is worth a visit (don't go on Tuesdays, because it will be shut). You can return either the same way or by the small tarmac road in the valley, which emerges at the Royal Oak.
  5. Via Spring Bank. This starts as if going to Thornthwaite (walk 4 above) except that one passes to the right of the youth centre past the kissing gate. Just follow the track, which is likely to be muddy in parts, round to the right until it hits the lane, where you turn back to the Royal Oak. The more energetic can race up Braithwaite How, to the right of the path.
  6. Coledale Beck. You can follow the beck upstream, by walking up the back of the Methodist Church just up from the bridge. Not far up is a little pool, suitable for swimming and absolute paradise for all dogs after a long day's walk in the fells. There you can choose to stay on the left of the beck, which turns out to be a pretty walk over rocks and, probably, some puddles - so you need the right footwear. Or, 100 yards before the pool, you can cross the wooden bridge to emerge on the Whinlatter road, where you soon branch left for the gravelled track to the Mine: flat and two miles long, giving you a good view of the whole Coledale valley and the fells at its head. You turn back when you've had enough.
  7. Derwentwater (west). Having parked in Portinscale, you can walk down the road to Nichol End and then take the lakeside path through the woods past Lingholm, which is where Beatrix Potter spent many summer holidays when writing her children's stories. The path drops down to the Hawes End and Brandelhow launch stops (Brandelhow was the very first piece of land acquired by the National Trust about a hundred years ago), then it follows the lakeside down to the southern end of the lake and then across to the Lodore launch stop, to return to Nichol End by boat. If this is too far to walk (about 3 miles), just stop at any of the intermediate launch stops to return by boat.
  8. Around Buttermere. You can park the car either in Buttermere village or at Gatesgarth, at the eastern end of the lake. The walk is a simple circuit of the lake, about 4 miles in total, and is often combined with a car excursion around the district - and an ice-cream at Gatesgarth and/or Buttermere.
  9. Castlehead. This is a good way to spend the time after taking someone who wants to go shopping into Keswick, which usually seems to take at least an hour. Take the Borrowdale road out of town and, after about 200 yards, turn left up into the woods. Follow any of the many paths up to the top of Castlehead, admire the view, and then drop down in an easterly direction to reach an exit from the wood across the fields to Springs Road. Turn left on Springs Road, and left again to reach the centre of Keswick.
  10. Keswick to Great Wood. In Keswick, walk down to the Theatre by the Lake, where you can turn right into the park for a marvellous view straight down Derwentwater. Return to the theatre, then walk down to the boat landing stages and onwards to Friar's Crag. Follow round the edge of the lake, through the woods to Calf Close Bay, where you have a choice: for a quick return, take the path on the lake side of the Borrowdale Road, past Castlehead back to Keswick. Or (longer and steeper), cross the road into Great Wood, cutting up left past the car park and eventually out of the woods onto the fields above the TV mast. Turn left down past the mast, through Springs Farm onto Springs Road and thence into Keswick.

Medium walks: up to 7 miles, some gradient.

  1. Barrow Door. Go up to the Coledale Inn and follow the tarmac road up hill. You are soon on the fell, with a view of Barrow to the left, the knobbles of Causey Pike in the distance straight ahead, and Stile End slightly to the right. Follow the path up to the left of Stile End. Barrow Door is the point where you can see down into the next valley, with Causey Pike towering above straight ahead and a path going up Barrow to the left. At the Door you need to choose, depending on the time and effort you have left (and, of course, the weather):
    • Come straight back again - with marvellous views of Skiddaw, and the village below.
    • Fork right and up Stile End, and then back down the valley
    • Carry on round to the right at roughly the same level and, after about half a mile, turn back down left into the Stonycroft Gill valley to reach the tarmac road just above Stair. At the road (an ideal place to paddle in the beck on a warm day), turn left and take the first opportunity after Uzzicar Farm to cut up left onto the flank of Barrow (see easy walk 2). This path takes you right round Barrow to the village.
    • Fork back left and take the relatively flat sheep track across the flank of Barrow, thence back to the village
    • Fork left upwards to the top of Barrow, and then back to the village. This is an easier way to climb Barrow than the direct ascent from the village (see medium walk 2 below), and the views are probably better, since on the walk back you are also looking back straight at the Skiddaw massif.
    • Carry straight on down a faintly visible path onto the Stonycroft Gill track, where you can turn left to Stair. It is useful to know about this (steep) short-cut when returning to Braithwaite from, say, Causey Pike or Little Town and Stair; in Stonycroft Gill the path starts when you are right below the highest Causey Pike knobble and you are passing a solitary rowan tree between the Gill track and the beck. There are now cairns at both ends of the path.
  2. Barrow. Barrow is Braithwaite's very own fell, so you have to climb it! It is only quite small, but it has the unfortunate characteristic of being quite steep in parts - and it has more than one false summit, so be warned! But the views, especially to the East, are marvellous. Go past the shop and up the drive to Braithwaite Lodge farm, through the farmyard and the field beyond, and up onto the fell. Don't look east until you get to the first (false) summit; there, take a breather and just look around. And, as you climb, you will see more and more of Derwentwater, so things only get better. At the top, you carry straight on down to Barrow Door where, usually, you would turn right back down to the village (see medium walk 1 above). Some people prefer this walk in reverse, which certainly offers the advantage of a less steep ascent.
  3. Newlands Valley. Go through the camp site, then past Little Braithwaite farm. Turn left down to the bridge, where you turn right into the valley (see easy walk no. 3 above). Carry right on to the end of the path and turn right at the tarmac road into the village of Stair (or turn left for some refreshment at the Swinside Inn). At the little cross-roads in Stair, take the first left up to Skelgill Farm (another place to appear in Beatrix Potter's stories), where you have some choices:
    • Come back to Stair, continue across the beck and take the signed footpath immediately on the right. Keep to the left across the fields until you reach Uzzicar Farm, whence you return to Braithwaite as in easy walk no. 3. This is about 5 miles.
    • Just before the main farm house, take the signed footpath through the gate to the right and across the fields to Little Town. There you can return along the tarmac road to Stair, where you bear left and then over the beck as before. This walk gives you arguably the best pastoral and fell-side views in the whole of England (!) and is also ideal when the fell-tops are in cloud. About 7 miles. Or, in Little Town, turn left and follow the tarmac road around the bottom of the valley past Rigg Beck and thence back onto the Buttermere road.
    • Pass the farm house, and move out through a gate onto the fell below Catbells. The tarmac road leads to the Hawes End car park, and thence back to the Swinside Inn and Braithwaite. However, for a view of Derwentwater, strike up the fell above the farm gate, where a path through the bracken soon takes you up onto the Catbells ridge. Return via Hawes End and the Swinside Inn, as above. About 5-6 miles. This, incidentally, has in my opinion the best Reward/Effort Ratio of any walk in the area: that is, you get great views and there's no danger of exhausting yourself. And there's a pub on the way back...
    • Pass the farm house, and move out through a gate onto the fell below Catbells. Turn up right, along a cart-track running along the length of Catbells. After about half a mile, branch left up the gently climbing grass track skirting round Catbells up to Hause Gate, then down the other side back to Hawes End, or back over the top of Catbells. 7-8 miles. Much the same marvellous views as above, and you get more exercise. This is probably my favourite mid-length walk - and the dogs love it, especially if we divert at Hawes End down to the lake for a swim.
  4. Lower Newlands. Walk past Braithwaite Church down to the A66, turn left and, after about 150 yards, turn right down past the Institute building. Follow the footpath sign across the fields to Bog House (!) by the wooden bridge, taking the path on the right to Portinscale. Cross the A66 into Portinscale where you can either follow the footpath sign to Ullock/Swinside and thence back to Braithwaite, or carry on through the village and down to the Nichol End marina, where you pick up the Derwentwater lakeside path. At Hawes End turn sharp right back to the Swinside Inn and Braithwaite via Newlands Beck.
  5. Mid Newlands. Take the path up Coledale to Barrow Door (see walk no. 1 above) and then drop straight down the other side to Stonycroft Gill. About half a mile further down the valley, pick up the flat path on the other side of the beck cutting around Rowling End. Where this path peters out at the tarmac road, carry on for about 100 yards to pick up the path on the left down to Newlands Beck - this is probably the most picturesque section of the whole beck, and a good place for a stop and exploration up and down the beckside. Then up the other side to "Ghyllbank", which is a cottage on the Stair - Little Town road. There, go left on the road for about 50 yards and take the path on the right signed to Skelgill Farm, where you can consider all the options outlined in walk no. 3 above.
  6. Outerside. This is the fell to the right of, and beyond, Stile End. Climb up towards Barrow Door (see above) but, at the end of the cart track, strike off half-right up the right-hand flank of Stile End. As the path levels out, traverse a boggy area before taking the track to the right up the front of Outerside. At the top, where you have some great views up, down and across in all directions, choose whether to:
    • come down the same way
    • carry on down the other side, bearing right to meet the path from Coledale Hause down to Force Crag Mine and thence down along the mine track to the Whinlatter road
    • carry on down the other side, bearing left at any point to meet the path down Stonycroft Gill and branching off left to Barrow Door or Stile End, and back home. The dogs and I agree that this is the best "short-ish" walk around the village: the dogs like the bog, I like the views and we both enjoy the exercise.
  7. Catbells. For this walk - probably the most popular in the northern lakes - one normally drives to the Hawes End public parking area at the north end of Catbells. Hawes End is one of the Derwentwater launch's stopping places, so you could combine this walk with a trip round the lake. From the car park (remember to apply the handbrake), cross the cattle grid and just follow the well marked trail up Catbells. The path is quite steep in parts, but you just have to keep in mind the view you are going to get of Derwentwater, preferably early on a sunny morning with the lake surface like a millpond - except for the track of the launch rippling out to both sides of the lake. As you start to climb the second half of Catbells, you also get a good view, down to the right, of the Newlands valley and Keskadale. Having reached the summit you drop down the further, southern side of Catbells to the Hause Gate "cross-roads", where you are spoilt for choice:
    • carry straight on for the long Newlands Round walk over Maiden Moor (see long walk no. 4 below), or
    • turn left down to the path above the road back to the car park, or further down below the road to the path back to Hawes End through the lakeside woods, or
    • drop down right towards Little Town (which is very little indeed, but you can sometimes get a drink at the farm). To arrive more quickly back at the car you can cut back further right, above Little Town's farm fields to Skelgill Farm and Hawes End.
  8. Little Dale. Drive to Little Town and park down by the beck. Walk over the bridge and through the gate on the left to Newlands Church, which is well worth a visit (and teas are on offer during the high season, on Sundays). Carry straight on up the road, past High Snab Farm and Low High Snab(!), and out on to the fell. Continue up the valley up to the little reservoir, and return down the side of Hindscarth using a path easily visible from Low High Snab. At the bottom of Hindscarth you pass through Low Snab Farm (teas and ice-creams usually available) and then down back to Newlands Church.
  9. Whinlatter Forest, and Lord's Seat and Barf. Take the car up to the Whinlatter Forest Visitors' Centre, and ask them for a trail map (which is great except for the area close to the Centre, on which you should ask them for guidance). The map identifies the numerous tracks through the forest, and a circular walk along them to both fells. Barf, however, is a very steep climb if attempted from the Thornthwaite valley - the story goes of a certain bishop, some 250 years ago, who bet his companions staying at the Swan Inn in Thornthwaite that he could ride his horse up Barf; he died, of course, when the horse fell back on him, hence the white "Bishop's Stone" where it all happened. From the Swan Inn you can try the same track, without your horse, or the slightly less precipitous climb through the woods up the beck to the left of the Bishop's Stone.
  10. Haystacks. You need to drive to the car park at Gatesgarth, at the eastern end of Buttermere. You can go up the right side of Fleetwith Pike and down over Haystacks and through Scarth Gap, or vice versa. It is quite easy to get lost on the top of Haystacks, so be warned! You will of course try not to tread on Wainwright's ashes, which were scattered on the edge of Innominate Tarn on Haystacks...
  11. Rannerdale Knotts. You start in Buttermere, taking the path up through the woods opposite the Bridge hotel. The path takes you out of the woods at a gate, and you climb up the fell following the main track to Whiteless Pike. At an obvious fork, branch left over to Rannerdale Knotts, admire the views over Crummock Water and return roughly the same way. If you are feeling bold, you can descend the western side of the Knotts, but be warned that the path is both steep and unpredictable, being covered with shale and scree. If you do take this route, you can turn right at the bottom and take the path round the edge of the Knotts back up to the main Whiteless Pike-Buttermere path, and thence down to Buttermere.
  12. Derwentwater (east). Park in Great Wood, about 1.5 miles out of Keswick along the Borrowdale Road, and take the path on the right of the car park towards Ashness. Follow this out onto the fell under Falcon Crag (there really are falcons nesting there) all the way to Ashness Bridge, where you can enjoy the world-famous views of Skiddaw beyond the bridge. Continue up the little road past Ashness Farm out onto the Surprise View cliff-top for yet more great views. Then you can choose. Either:
    • carry on through the woods, eventually down a cart-track and (steeply) down right to the Lodore Falls. Just before the Lodore Hotel on the Borrowdale road, turn right and take the path through the woods to the Kettlewell car park. There you can cross the road and walk for some distance along the lake-shore back to the northern edge of Great Wood, where you have only a few hundred yards back to the car park. About 6 miles. Or:
    • walk back down past Ashness Bridge and onto the Borrowdale road, where you drop down to the lake-shore, turning right for a stroll along the lake back to the northern edge of Great Wood and back to the car. About 3 miles.
  13. Walla Crag. From the centre of Keswick, walk along Springs Road past the farm and into the wood. Branch right up the path to Rakefoot, and keep right onto the tops of Walla Crag. Where the path splits after the stile, decide whether to keep left, which takes you on to the top of Falcon Crag and thence to Ashness Bridge, where you return at a lower level under Falcon Crag to Great Wood; or keep right, when you soon descend sharply down Cat Ghyll into Great Wood, where you meet up with the path from Ashness Bridge. From Great Wood you can take the path along the lake side of Borrowdale Road into Keswick, or the more scenic lakeside path back into Keswick. About 5 miles, or 7 via Ashness Bridge.
  14. Latrigg and Brundholme Wood. Park in Keswick in Brundholme Road, at the start of the "Cumbria Way", where you follow Spooney Way over the A66, ignoring various branches left. Take any of the right turns up Latrigg. At the top admire one of the best views in Lakeland, then continue north-east on a gradual descent. After about a mile branch sharp left off the main track towards and through Brundholme Wood. In the middle of the Wood - or indeed before you branch off into the woods - you can drop down to the track going along the Greta river or, on the other side of the river, to the track along the disused Keswick-Penrith railway, which finishes up in the middle of Keswick. Or carry straight through the woods along the higher path back to the path over the A66.
  15. Latrigg and Castlerigg Stone Circle. As in the previous walk, park in Keswick in Brundholme Road, at the start of the "Cumbria Way", where you follow Spooney Way over the A66, ignoring various branches left. Take one of the three right turns up Latrigg. At the top admire one of the best views in Lakeland, then continue north-east on a gradual descent. After about a mile as the path curves right, turn left through a gate onto a little road and then right down past a farm onto the old railway track. Turn left over a railway bridge and then immediately right, up to the A66 and directly over to reach the old A66, where you turn left and, after a few hundred yards, right to the Stone Circle. Return to Keswick via the metalled road.
  16. Blencathra. This magnificent fell has so many ways up and down that Wainwright took 36 pages to describe them all! It is difficult to imagine a better way to spend a strenuous half day, with a little scrambling thrown in, than to drive to Threlkeld and then ascend via Hall's Fell ridge and descend by Doddick Fell. Or, if you have a good head for heights, try Sharp Edge round the east side of Scales Fell - but not in the rain or high winds. Or, as a variation, go up Doddick Fell and down by Gategill Fell.
  17. High Rigg. Quite a contrast from Blencathra - a gentle stroll! You start from the Diocesan Youth Centre at the northern end of St John's-in-the-Vale, climb straight up High Rigg, and then wander across the top of the fell to the southern end, where you drop down to return via the path along St John's-in-the-Vale.
  18. Dock Tarn from Rosthwaite. Park in Rosthwaite and take the path up towards Watendlath (as in Linear walk no. 5 below). At the top of the climb just after a five-bar gate, turn right through another five-bar gate and across the open fell to another smaller gate. Take the path to the left, and branch right at the sign to "Dock Tarn". Climb up and past the Tarn, and down the other side into the woods above Stonethwaite, where a steep descent leaves you with a walk back along the beck to Rosthwaite.
  19. Great Cockup. Which really is the name of one of the Uldale fells to the north of Skiddaw. You start on the Uldale Road, off the A591, parking just before Orthwaite and taking the bridleway along the western flank of Great Cockup. Climb onto the ridge as soon as possible to make the most of the views and, after reaching the summit, drop down into Trusmadoor, a little ravine which enthusiasts will cross in order to ascend the other side, which is Meal Fell. Back down in Trusmadoor, take the path down beside Burntod Gill out onto the fellside and then back to the start point.
  20. Bleaberry Fell and High Seat. Start from Ashness Bridge, climbing straight up the gill. Keep on the right hand side of the beck, bearing right near the top of the steep climb and following the path across boggy moorland onto the top of High Seat. Turn left for the track to Bleaberry Fell, where you drop down north-west towards the top of Falcon Crag. Branch left to take the track from Walla Crag back to Ashness. About 7 miles, boggy in places - but great views, especially of our north-western fells.
  21. Bowscale Fell. There are two versions of this walk: the longer one, about 6 miles, and the short one, about 4 miles. The first starts at the BT phone box in Mungrisdale, whence you take the path by the side of the cottage and along the beck. Keep right at the fork, in order to climb up the side of The Tongue onto the top of Bannerdale Crags. As the path levels out, strike up right to the Pile of Stones and then across to the edge of the escarpment down which you need to descend, picking up the path down to Bowscale Tarn. There you take the path around the northern edge of the tarn, which takes you down Mosedale to the hamlet of Bowscale, and thence along the little road back to Mungrisdale. The short walk, which is an entirely suitable accompaniment to lunch at the Mill Inn at Mungrisdale, starts and finishes at Bowscale, the target being the Tarn.
  22. High Spy from Grange. You can do this walk, which is about 7 miles, either clockwise or anti-clockwise. Choosing the former, leave the village on the little road, which forms part of the Allerdale Ramble, to Hollows Farm campsite, drop down to the Derwent, and fork right to climb up past Castle Crag. Just after the wooden bridge, turn sharp right up Tongue Gill, through the disused Rigghead Quarries, to the plateau below High Spy. Cross the plateau, which can be quite boggy in places, to meet the track between High Spy and Dale Head Tarn, turning up right to High Spy and Maiden Moor. Follow the main path down to Hause Gate and then sharply down to Manesty, where you can take the path behind the cottages back to Grange.
  23. Threlkeld Common. The best thing about this walk is that you get a grandstand view of Blencathra throughout. You start at the Threlkeld Quarry cottages (stop in at the Mining Museum if you have the time), and take the path along the Glenderamackin up to Guardhouse and then across to Wallthwaite. Bear right to pick up the path across the disused railway past Highgate and Lobbs Farm, across a wide expanse of Moss (i.e., bog) up to the Old Coach Road. This takes you back in front of Clough Head and down again to the Quarry.

Long walks : 5-15 miles, can be steep and difficult underfoot.

By far the best way to learn about these is to read the Wainwright books. The best ones in the immediate vicinity of Braithwaite are:

  1. Causey Pike. Rather like a big brother of Catbells to look at, but with different views. A little scrambling is involved near the top. Approach from Stair via Stonycroft Gill, climb up to Sail Pass, and come back via Scar Crags and down the northern side of the Pike, or over Rowling End, to Stair. Or you can climb more directly from Braithwaite via Barrow Door to Sail Pass, and drop straight down from the top of Causey back to Barrow Door.
  2. Coledale Horseshoe: go via Barrow Door, Sail Pass, Sail and Eel Crags, down into Coledale Hause and back via either Grisedale Pike or the Force Crag Mine road in the Coledale valley (the latter is shorter and flatter, but a bit tedious). In Coledale Hause, as a diversion you can hop straight across up Grasmoor before deciding on the route back. Seven to nine miles, and with terrific views.
  3. Grisedale Pike. Straight up from the village, taking the steps up from the car park cut into the hill 400 yards up the Whinlatter road, and back via Eel Crags and Stonycroft Gill or (shorter) via Coledale Hause and Force Crag Mine. If you can get up Grisedale without stopping, you are fit! The views are certainly worth the effort. Another way up Grisedale, which will appeal to those who do not fancy the the length of the climb up Sleet How from Braithwaite, is to drive up to the Revelin Moss car park at the top of Whinlatter and climb from there: not so far and not so steep, and you also get some good views of the fells to the north and northwest.
  4. Ladyside Pike. As in walk 3 above, climb Grisedale Pike from Revelin Moss, but then walk across to Hopegill Head via Hobcarton Crags. From the top of Hopegill head cut down across the scree to Ladyside Pike and thence down across open grassland to the tarmac road near Blaze Bridge. Return via the Whinlatter pass, taking the forest tracks just past Swinside Houses. You can cut off 2-3 miles by dropping down to the forest path as soon as it comes into view after Ladyside Pike.
  5. Newlands Round: Catbells (see above), Maiden Moor, High Spy, Dale Head, and Robinson or Hindscarth - in either direction. 10 miles, a great mixture of views and terrain. Park the car either at Hawes End, for Catbells, or just below Little Town, by the beck, for Hindscarth. If you choose the latter, you can miss out Catbells and walk straight up to Hause Gate and thence onto Maiden Moor. At the end of the walk you may get a drink at Low Snab Farm below Hindscarth, and by then you will have earned it! For the less enthusiastic, you can cheat by walking along the valley floor from Little Town to Dale Head (or vice versa), meeting up with the main circuit close to Dale Head Tarn.
  6. Coledale Hause from Lanthwaite Green. Start from Lanthwaite Green Farm car park on the Lorton to Crummock road: up Whiteside via Whin Ben, Hopegill Head, Coledale Hause, down via Gasgale Gill. Or you can progress a little further up the Hause and branch right for Grasmoor, which gives you a great view of everything to the west. From Whiteside to Hopegill Head is a magnificent ridge walk, followed by a pleasant descent along the Gill.
  7. Whiteside and Whiteless Pike. This is slightly more ambitious than the previous walk. From Lanthwaite Green strike up via Gasgale Gill or Whiteside to Coledale Hause, where you carry straight on (via the top of Grasmoor if you wish) past the top of Wandope and then Whiteless Pike. Descend the Pike to the level of Rannerdale Knotts on the right, where you take the path over the Knotts and down the western end (taking care on the scree) onto the road by Crummock Water, which takes you back to Lanthwaite. Or you can bypass Rannerdale, taking the obvious path down to Crummock between the Knotts and Grasmoor.
  8. Skiddaw. There are many ways up Skiddaw, some far more pleasant than others, so read Wainwright. A good way is to park in Bassenthwaite village and climb the ridge of Ullock Pike returning from Skiddaw down its north-eastern face via Bakestall into the Bassenthwaite valley.
  9. Around Blencathra. This walk emphasises the great difference between Blencathra's dramatic south-facing ridges and the gentle grasslands of the summit. Start at the A66 lay-by before the White Horse pub, striking up over Scales Fell. You will, as the path eventually curves up to the left, see Sharp Edge emerging; at the tarn you need to decide whether to ascend Sharp Edge or keep up to the left to reach the summit via the Doddick Fell ridge route. Walk along the summit path and slightly down to Blease Fell Top, where you strike off due north (there are no paths) and gradually down to Roughten Gill. Follow the gill down, taking care, until you hit a well-defined track above Glenderaterra Beck. Take the higher path around to the Blencathra Centre and then, where the wall appears on the left of the tarmac road, cut up left onto the path which eventually takes you all the way back to Scales. About 9 miles. If you hit bad visibility at Blease Fell Top, you can come straight down Blease Fell, where there is an extremely well worn track. On no account think of walking up Blease Fell, which is a soul-destroying slog - unless you walk up backwards, which gives you some great views, and sore legs.
  10. Applethwaite. Millbeck and Applethwaite are the two little villages nestling under Skiddaw on the other side of the flat northern end of Newlands Valley.Walk past Braithwaite Church down to the A66, turn left and, after about 150 yards, turn right down past the Institute building. Follow the footpath on the OS map, across Newlands Beck and the Derwent river, arriving eventually at Dancing Gate farm on the A591. At this point the faint-hearted can just take the metalled road down to Millbeck, but they will miss the magnificent views obtainable by climbing up on the paths within Thornthwaite Forest and Lyzzick Wood. These paths are all part of the so-called Allerdale Ramble, which eventually takes you out of Lyzzick Wood onto the lower flank of Carl Side and then down into Millbeck. Follow the Ramble path through Applethwaite and the fields down to the A591 and the A66, to reach Crosthwaite on the edge of Keswick. Thence you follow the footpaths to return via Portinscale, Ullock Farm and Little Braithwaite. This walk, which is about 8 miles but mainly flat except for the forest diversion, is much enhanced by good visibility - the views south from Millbeck and Applethwaite are among the best in the district.
  11. Circuit of Derwentwater. You can combine the Derwentwater (west) and the Derwentwater (east) walks described above to make a full circuit of the lake. The only part you need to add is between Keswick and Portinscale: you proceed out of Keswick on the road as towards Braithwaite, turning left just after the bridge over the Greta, and take the footpath past the Rugby Club grounds to Portinscale, crossing the Derwent and turning left in the village to Nichol End. The circuit is about 9 miles at lake level, or 12 miles if you include the Lodore Falls and Ashness Bridge excursion.
  12. Grange to Watendlath. From Grange, take the footpath by the side of the little café past the Hollows Farm camp site along the Derwent to Rosthwaite, where (see linear walk no.5) you strike up over the fell to Watendlath. From Watendlath take the path down the beck-side, branching left at the wooden bridge to descend by the Lodore Falls. Return to Grange either along the road - you can drop down to the river after passing Derwent House - or via the path to Manesty. About 8 miles.
  13. The Buttermere ridge. From the Fish Hotel car park (first read Melvyn Bragg's "The Maid of Buttermere") walk between Buttermere and Crummock Water and then right along Crummock to the foot of Scale Force. Climb up by the waterfall and then left up onto the ridge, where your reward is some of the best views in Lakeland. Having traversed Red Pike, High Stile, and High Crag you drop down into Scarth Gap where you usually turn left down to Buttermere. About 9 miles. Fitter brethren can attack Red Pike head on, taking the path up Sourmilk Ghyll to Bleaberry Tarn just below the summit.
  14. The Buttermere round. Here you extend the Buttermere ridge walk by crossing Scarth Gap to climb Haystacks and then strike down towards Honister Hause via the old tramway; you then cross the Honister road to climb Dale Head before taking the ridge path to Robinson and thence down into Buttermere village. About 16 miles, and lots of up and down.
  15. The Loweswater fells. These fells are on the western edge of the Lake District, are not too high, and give you a good view of the coastal plain and the sea. You park at Maggie's Bridge, on the left just before Loweswater itself, and walk across the fields to Holme Wood. Here you cut up through the trees onto Burnbank Fell, which you can climb either directly or via the path which circles round to the right. The top is a single wooden post. Thence you aim south via a wire fence to Blake Fell, Gavel Fell and down across and up to Hen Comb and back down again to the car. The Hen Comb ridge gives you some good views of the Buttermere fells. You can also get some lovely pictures from the road (but you don't get the exercise!).
  16. Styhead Tarn. From Seathwaite Farm at the end of Borrowdale, walk along to Stockley Bridge over Grains Gill. Go left following the line of Grains, and then Ruddy, Gill up the well marked path to the crags and gullies below Great End, where you eventually meet the path from Esk Hause to Styhead Tarn. Turn right, down past Sprinkling Tarn towards Great Gable until you see Styhead Tarn down on your right. Follow the track past the Tarn back to Stockley Bridge and the Farm. You can of course do the walk in reverse: Stockley Bridge, Styhead Tarn, up towards Esk Hause, and down Grains Gill back to Stockley Bridge. This walk is by way of a reconnaissance, since Styhead is well known to serious walkers and climbers as the point from which you strike up to not only Great Gable with its crags and needles but also the central "3,000 foot" fells: Scafell, Scafell Pike, Great End and the lesser known Ill Crag and Broad Crag.
  17. Great Gable. There are many approaches, but the path from Honister Hause has many advantages, one of which is that you start quite high, so there is less climbing! From the Honister quarry, which is still producing lots of grey and green slate, take the path straight up Grey Knotts by the wire fence, then cross via Brandreth to Green Gable. Drop down into Windy Gap and up to the stony top of Great Gable. To return a different way, drop down south-west from the summit (you can easily get lost on the top, especially in cloud), using a built-up path all the way to the First Aid post, turning down left to Styhead Tarn, Stockley Bridge, Seathwaite and Seatoller. Where you can walk up to Honister, via the old track to the right of the metalled road, or take the Honister Rambler bus. Alternatives: from Honister, take the tramway up right, then cut across left towards Gable, turning left again for Brandreth - or carrying straight along Moses' Trod across to Beck Head, where you cut up left to the top of Gable. Or, if you are feeling particularly intrepid or foolhardy, carry on past Beck Head, keeping left for the Climbers' Traverse, where you have any number of scrambles up the crags of Great Napes to reach the summit. From Green Gable, a good descent is via Base Brown, Gillercomb and Sour Milk Gill to Seathwaite. And, if you find yourself at Styhead, try keeping left at the wooden bridge, and descend via Taylor Gill Force.
  18. Angle Tarn and Langstrath. As in the Styhead Tarn walk above, climb up Grains Gill to the Esk Hause-Styhead Tarn path, where you turn left up to the Esk Hause-Allen Crags crossroads. Drop down south-east for about 500 yards, where you follow the beck sharply down left into Langstrath, between Glaramara on the left and High Raise on the right. Alternatively you can continue further down the path and then up to Angle Tarn, where you take the path left and then, after about a mile, left again. Eventually, at the further end of Langstrath (which is indeed a long valley, without habitation of any kind), you reach the junction with Greenup Gill, where you turn left to Stonethwaite and thence Seatoller and Seathwaite. About 12 miles, but without any hard climbs.
  19. Glaramara. This is the fell with the lovely name at the very end of Borrowdale as seen from Keswick. Start from Seatoller car park (which is also the terminus for the Borrowdale Bus from Keswick) and walk back 400 yards up the valley road to Mountain View, two houses opposite which is a signed footpath. After just a few yards, turn up left over a stile and keep up to the right to climb Thorneythwaite Fell. Continue up, with the views improving all the time, onto the top of Glaramara. Carry straight on southwards over Allen Crags down to Esk Hause, turning right, down past Sprinkling Tarn towards Great Gable until you see Styhead Tarn down on your right. Follow the track past the Tarn back to Stockley Bridge and the Farm.
  20. Castlerigg and Low Rigg. In this walk you can combine a visit to our local version of Stonehenge (smaller, but with better views in all directions) with a pleasant walk through the gentle fells to the east of Keswick. Leave Keswick via Springs Road, following the path up towards Walla Crag past the TV mast until reaching the surfaced road near Rakefoot farm. There turn left, then right after 50 yards, taking the marked path to Castlerigg Stone Circle. On reaching the A591, turn right and then left through High Nest farm, to reach Castlerigg across the fields. Having inspected the Circle, take the surfaced road east to Goosewell Farm, then across the fields to Naddle Bridge and back onto the road, keeping right to pick up the path to "St John's Church", past Tewet Tarn to Low Rigg and the Diocesan Youth Centre. Turn right at the Youth Centre and carry straight on down across the fields back to the A591 and the same path back to Keswick. About 10 miles, with little gradient. Here are some pictures.
  21. Scafell Pike. The approach from the north follows a most enjoyable path, the Corridor Route. You start in Seathwaite, and walk up past Stockley Bridge to Styhead Tarn. There you can see the high ridge from Great End to Scafell Pike which you are going to scale.. After the Tarn, cut up left onto the path to Esk Hause, but before Great End take the now well eroded path to the right, the Corridor Route, which initially drops down before gradually ascending along the side of the ridge. The path crosses three ravines, at each of which some little mild scrambling is involved, before reaching Lingmell Col, a T-junction where you turn left up to the Pike. Alternatively, after the second ravine (Greta Gill), you can strike up left on a well-defined path to the col between Broad Crag and Scafell Pike, in which case be prepared for some more scrambling, and steep scree. At the top (photos are obligatory, as at the top of Everest), you can well get lost, since there is no visible path across the sea of boulders: aim north-east towards a small shelter and a cairn, where you should find a faint path to the left dropping down slightly towards Broad Crag. You follow this path across the rocks all the way down to Esk Hause, where you drop down left, above Sprinkling Tarn, to the top of Ruddy Gill, which you follow back down to Grains Gill and Stockley Bridge. You can certainly consider this walk in reverse, which has lots of scenic highlights; if you do, make sure that, when returning on the Corridor Route at Greta Gill (the second ravine), you keep up to the right rather than take the obvious path down the Gill.
  22. UllscarfUllscarf is the most central of all the Lakeland fells, and is best approached from Watendlath.  The path takes you round the right hand side of the Tarn, and up to Dock Tarn - for a good view cut up to Great Crag on the right of the path just before Dock Tarn.  From Great Crag you can see Ullscarf on the eastern side of Dock Tarn, and you climb across the grass and mosses, over Low and High Saddle, onto Greenup Edge, where the highest point is Ullscarf.  The top is featureless (stick to the fence posts in bad visibility), but the views, both from the top and when descending directly to Watendlath, are excellent.  About 7 miles.
  23. Carrock Fell to Great Calva .  This 12-mile walk takes you to the less frequented, northern side of Blencathra.  You start half way along Mosedale, and climb Carrock Fell on the northern side of the valley.  Then across west to High Pike, south-west to Knott , south-east to Great Calva, and return via the Cumbria Way and the Caldew valley to Mosedale.  Up here the fells are not so jagged, but you get a great sense of wide open space.  Here are the pictures.
  24. Keswick to Rosthwaite via Watendlath.  This 15-mile walk links together some of the other walks described elsewhere.  You start from Springs Road, Keswick by climbing Walla Crag, then drop down to Ashness Farm and cut across the top of the crags above Lodore, not forgetting to visit Surprise View, into the valley which terminates in the hamlet of Watendlath.  From there you cut up right to the pass which gives you a view of the high fells beyond the end of Borrowdale, and drop down to Rosthwaite.  You can then choose between the high road or the low road to Grange, whence you return to Keswick via either side of Derwentwater; the eastern side is shorter, but may be flooded in parts and does not offer the classical views of Blencathra from the side of Catbells.
  25. Around and over Blencathra.  Instead of tackling the magnificent ridges on the front of Blencathra, this walk explores the Glenderaterra valley to its west and the expansive grasslands behind the summit ridge. 

Linear walks: where you need transport at one end or t'other. The walks vary considerably in length.

  1. Braithwaite to Buttermere: Barrow Door, Sail, Eel Crag, Wandope, Whiteless Pike, and Buttermere. Six miles, with great views (most of the pictures are attached to other walks, e.g., the Coledale Horseshoe above). You can just as easily do the walk in reverse, but be warned that Whiteless Pike is quite a steep climb from Buttermere.
  2. Lanthwaite Green to Braithwaite. As long walk 6 above, but at Hopegill Head carry straight on either via Grisedale Pike or via Coledale Hause and Force Crag Mine. About five miles.
  3. Newlands Hause to Braithwaite. Having parked at Newlands Hause, on the road to Buttermere, climb Knott Rigg to reach the ridge, lower than its neighbours and therefore less likely to be affected by any low cloud, which runs along the north side of Keskadale. Half way along you can drop down to the left to reach Sail Pass and thence Barrow Door, but then you miss the delights of the ridge and its views to east and south. At the end, drop down left at the fence to ford Rigg Beck and meet the road at Rigg Beck the purple(!) house - sadly now in a state of some dilapidation. There you can take the road back towards Stair; after about 400 yards take the path up left, which cuts right around the flank of Rowling End/Causey Pike, terminating at the Stonycroft Gill beck, where you cross the beck in order to climb up to Barrow Door and thence Braithwaite. Five and a half miles. Or, at Rigg Beck, you can drop down the further side of the purple house to Little Town, and return through the fields or by the road to Stair.
  4. Manesty to Braithwaite. Manesty is a house, made famous by Hugh Walpole in the Herries Chronicles, on the road down to Grange. Walking back from there, one climbs onto the Hause Gate saddle between Catbells and Maiden Moor, thence up Catbells and down the northern side, branching left to drop down via Skelgill Farm and Stair. There are many ways back from Stair (see medium walk no. 3), but this could be the time to climb the path up the right of Stonycroft Gill, cutting up right to reach Barrow Door and the village. About four miles.
  5. Rosthwaite to Watendlath and Ashness Bridge. From the village shop in Rosthwaite turn right and right over the bridge, taking the cart track up to the left of Hazel Bank, over the top and down to Watendlath Farm. Until 1851, when the metalled road from Keswick to Borrowdale was built, this was the main path from Keswick to Rosthwaite. At Watendlath you can fish in the tarn, join the National Trust, have a cream tea or just sit and admire the view. Then take the path down the valley to the left of the beck, eventually cutting up right over the bridge at an obvious three-way crossroads and then through the woods. Keep up to the left in the woods to gain some beautiful views of Derwentwater and Skiddaw before dropping down to the car park at Ashness Bridge. About four miles. Even more enjoyable after reading the Herries chronicles....
  6. Ashness Bridge to Braithwaite via Borrowdale. From Ashness Bridge car park (take your camera for pictures of Skiddaw) walk to Rosthwaite via Watendlath (see linear walk no.5), then in the village take the footpath to Grange. You can paddle in the Derwent, and acquire (non-alcoholic) refreshment in Grange, which you may need at this stage. Take the road to Portinscale from Grange and, before the Borrowdale Gates hotel on the right outside the village, strike up the fell on the left. Follow the track past Manesty, where you can either follow linear walk no. 4 or keep to the lower path round Catbells to Hawes End car park, thence home via the Swinside Inn. About 10 miles, fairly flat, and with some great views.
  7. Seatoller, or Honister, to Grange. From the National Trust car park/Borrowdale Bus terminus in Seatoller, walk up the road towards Honister and strike up right in a long zig-zag, following the waymark arrows to reach a track cutting across the flank of High Spy and Maiden Moor down Borrowdale. Alternatively you can come down from Honister, following the bridleway which was the old road from Seatoller. The track you meet up with is part of the Allerdale Ramble long distance walk. On the right you will see Castle Crag, which is well worth an excursion. You then drop down to meet the path from Rosthwaite to Grange. A gentle and scenic stroll of about 4 miles. If you are feeling enthusiastic, you can carry on from Grange via Manesty back to Braithwaite - see linear walk no. 4 above.
  8. Mungrisdale to Keswick via Blencathra. Mungrisdale is a village to the north-east of Blencathra, accessible from the A66. At the further end of the village, take the track to the left by the public phone-box. Keep going up left and then round to the right, eventually climbing up the right hand side of Bannerdale Crags. Follow the path round the top of the Crags to the left, and then strike across the moorland towards Blencathra up to the right. As you climb the Blencathra ridge, you can stop to admire those struggling up and down Sharp Edge. At the top, you can walk the entire length of the summit ridge until you drop down the far side, Blease Fell, aiming for the Blencathra Centre group of buildings. There you descend through the fields to the disused railway line, which forms a path into Keswick.
  9. Rosthwaite to Grasmere. This is actually the third day of Wainwright's "Coast-to-coast" walk. From the village shop in Rosthwaite turn right and right over the bridge, then right again taking the cart track along the beck along to Stonethwaite, then up the valley past Lining Crag onto Greenup Edge before walking the ridge down to Helm Crag and thence into Grasmere (where one can get the 555 double decker bus back into Keswick).
  10. The Helvellyn ridge. This is the longest high level ridge walk in the Lakes, and well worth the effort required to achieve the reward of some marvellous views in all directions. The ridge is usually walked from south to north, from Dunmail Raise to Threlkeld. Take the path from a gate at the southern end of the short dual carriageway on the A591 south of Thirlmere, and strike up the right hand side of Raise Beck. As the gradient decreases, cut across left for a steep slog across grass up to the top of Dollywaggon Pike (and that, you will glad to hear, is the end of any serious ascent!). From Dollywaggon take the well marked path across the tops of High Crag, Nethermost Pike, Helvellyn, and Raise down and up to Stybarrow Dodd and then Watson's Dodd. Before Great Dodd, the next top, bear left across to Calfhow Pike and then Clough Head, where you cut down to the Old Coach Road and across to Threlkeld.

Walks more than 10 miles away from Braithwaite

  1. The Langdale Pikes. This is probably the most popular long walk in the Lakes, being close to Grasmere, Ambleside and Bowness, and offering some great scenery and lots of strenuous exercise. You start at the New Dungeon Ghyll Hotel in Great Langdale, striking up Stickle Gill to Stickle Tarn, which is a good place for refreshment while contemplating those intrepid enough to attempt Jack's Rake, a climbing route up Pavey Ark. There are many other paths up the right end of Pavey Ark, after which the "Wainwright-baggers" will scale the heights (about 50 feet) of Thunacar Knott, then the more impressive crags of Harrison Stickle. The normal route is then to cut across to Pike o' Stickle and back to Loft Crag, before picking up the path down again to Dungeon Ghyll. Only about 5 miles, but not flat.

  2. St Sunday Crag. This 10-mile walk is a good introduction to the fells south of Ullswater. You start at the Patterdale Hotel - where you can look forward to a welcome drink at the end of your exertions - taking the path round the back of the buildings up Grisedale (not to be confused with the real Grisedale) via Thornhow End to Birks and then across to the Crag. Carry straight on down to Grisedale Tarn, and then back below Striding Edge to Patterdale.

  3. Silver Howe and Easedale. Silver Howe is the fell on the western side of Grasmere, which is where Wordsworth lived for many years and was eventually buried. The climb from Grasmere onto Silver Howe is fairly gentle and short, and offers some good views. From the top take the faint path north-west past Blea Rigg to Sergeant Man, at the top of the Easedale valley. Drop down towards Easedale Tarn, either directly or via Codale Tarn and Tarn Crag, and thence back into Grasmere. Here are some pictures. About 10 miles.

  4. Red Screes from Brotherswater. Red Screes is the fell looming above the Kirkstone Inn, the highest pub in England. This walk approaches from the north, via the Brotherswater Inn, where you can park - and refresh yourself on your return. Aim first for Hartsop Hall, where you turn left for the steep climb up High Hartsop Dodd and then a gentle stroll along the ridge to Little Hart Crag, which is a good place to stop for lunch. You can see the path down and then up left to Red Screes, which offers great views in all directions. You then return north over Middle Dodd back down to the valley. About 7 miles.

  5. Place Fell. Which is the fell which dominates the south-east end of Ullswater. About the height of Causey Pike, it offers a good 7-8 mile walk which includes the lakeside path back to Patterdale which Wainwright called "the most beautiful and rewarding walk in Lakeland" (mind you, this was a comment in Book 2 of his walk descriptions, and he hadn't at that time visited the North-western Fells, of course...). You start from Patterdale village, crossing the valley bottom to Side Farm, where you turn right up to Boardale Hause. At the Hause take the left-most path up to the top of the fell where, in good visibility, there are great views in all directions. You can then drop down to the left, but to reach the Sandwick path back along the lake stay up and aim roughly north-east, over Sleet Fell and then down to the lakeside path, which leads back to Side Farm. Here are some pictures.

  6. Gowbarrow FellLook due north from the top of Place Fell and you see Gowbarrow Fell on the other side of Ullswater.  Although much smaller than Place Fell, it offers a pleasant 4-mile walk including access to Aira Force, possibly the most photogenic of Lakes waterfalls.  You can start from the car park at Aira Force, but a good alternative is to park in Dockray on the A5091, and take the path around the north of the fell to Ulcat Row, where you need to strike south-east up the fell.  The top of the fell is a jumble of bumps and hollows, but luckily the National Trust has installed a high cairn to aim for.  From there you follow an easy path down to Aira Force, and thence back to Dockray. 

  7. Steel Fell and High Raise.  Steel Fell is the large fell on the right as you drive south on the A591 past Thirlmere and start dropping down over Dunmail Raise to Grasmere.  A good approach is from Ghyll Foot, just off the A591 near Grasmere, where you strike up Steel Fell and then cut across the old Westmorland-Cumberland boundary fence to the head of Far Easedale.  From there you need to climb up to Greenup Edge and thence to High Raise. You return via the ridge on the north side of Far Easedale which terminates in Helm Crag (see the Rosthwaite-Grasmere linear walk) and finally you drop down the northern side of Helm Crag to reach the car. About 10 miles.  Here are the pictures.
  8. The Kentmere Horseshoe.  This is one of the classic Lakeland walks, and certainly deserves a day of your time, even if it is about an hour away by car and the parking in Kentmere village is limited.  You start in the village, and climb gradually by the Garburn Road onto the ridge which begins with Yoke, and is followed by Ill Bell, Froswick and finally Thornthwaite Crag.  Here you normally turn east to Mardale Ill Bell, but you can easily cut across first to High Street (the felltop) and walk along some of the ancient Roman Road from Penrith to Ambleside.  From Mardale Ill Bell you drop down to the Nan Bield pass and then up to Harter Fell, before descending gradually via Kentmere Pike and Shipman Knotts to the village.  About 13 miles.  Here are the pictures.
  9. A Boardale round.  Boardale is the valley to the east of south Ullswater, hidden from the lake by Place Fell.  At its northern end it joins up with Martindale, and you start the walk at St Peter's Church, Martindale.  Walk up Martindale past the old St Martin's Church, over the bridge and, after about 200 yards, strike up right onto the flank of Beda Fell.  Having reached the top of the fell, carry straight on until you reach Angle Tarn, which is a good place for lunch.  You can climb Angletarn Pikes for even better views.  Then take the Patterdale path to Boardale Hause, for the climb up Place Fell.  Keep to the right when continuing over the summit of Place Fell, taking the path to the right of High Dodd, before dropping down to Boardale at Garth Heads, whence you return via the little road to St Peter's Church.  About 8 miles.
  10. Helvellyn from Glenridding.  This is the classic ascent of Helvellyn via Striding Edge, the "airy" (i.e. very exposed) ridge just before the summit.  You start from Glenridding car park, climbing to the left of the beck onto the flank of Birkhouse Moor.  The Edge starts about half a mile after the "Hole in the Wall", where the path meets with the track ascending from Patterdale.  If you do not fancy walking along the top of Striding Edge, there is a path along the northern side, which you are advised to take in wet or windy weather.  From the top of Helvellyn, which is an expanse so flat that an aeroplane landed there in the 1930's, return to Glenridding via Swirral Edge, Catstyecam and Red Tarn Beck.  Here are the pictures.  About 8 miles.
  11. Head of Langdale.  The fells at the head of Great Langdale form a great, if strenuous, ridge walk.  You start from the Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel, walking south up the Blea Tarn road to take the steep, graded path to the right by Red Acre Gill, to the top of Pike o' Blisco.  Descend the other side, to pick up the path climbing to Crinkle Crags (divert up Cold Pike on the left, for some good views, if you have time).  The path across the five Crinkles includes the notorious Bad Step, which is negotiable for the good scrambler or avoidable by skirting round the right hand buttress.  From the fifth Crinkle you drop down to Three Tarns, where you can return easily to the ODG, or climb to the top of Bowfell, the highest point on the ridge.  Enthusiasts will continue on to Esk Pike before dropping down into Langdale and home.  Between 9 and 13 miles, depending on route, and at least 4000 feet of ascent.  Here are some pictures.
  12. Scafell from Eskdale.  If you can face the long, and possibly nerve-wracking, drive over Hardknott Pass, you are rewarded by a fine walk up the Eskdale valley culminating in a stiff climb to the summit of Scafell via Foxes Tarn.  You start at Wha House Farm car park and keep on the western side of the river Esk, passing via Taw House and Scale Bridge up to Cam Spout Crag, where you turn up left by the waterfall.  The Foxes Tarn path is just before the East Buttress of Scafell. You return via Slight Side to Wha House Farm. About 9 miles, and 3000 feet of ascent. 

Here are some of my favourite photos.

In the  summer of 2006 I walked all the Wainwrights  for a charity, the Great North Air Ambulance Service.  Read all about the walks here.


If you would like to comment on this page, perhaps to correct something or to add some detail, please feel free to email me.

The contents of this page, and of any page accessed via a link on this page, are subject to copyright.

© P. G. R. Rigg 2001-2011