Local Walks

There was a time when visitors to the Lake District read Baddeley’s guide book, bought a 1 inch map and set off into the hills wearing whatever clothes they had, a pair of wellies perhaps, an old mac, a tweed cap and jacket and an umbrella. Nearly all of them survived and enjoyed their adventures. They only came in summer.

Then came Wainwright, organised mountain rescue and dire warnings about safety, hi-tech outdoor clothing, ergonomic rucksacks, Gore-tex lined boots, leki poles, GPS and mobile phones. With these came crowds, outdoor gear shops, guided walks, fanatical peak baggers and footpath erosion. It is quite common now to see people on Loughrigg (20 minutes easy walk from the town centre) wearing and carrying hundreds of pounds worth of kit good enough to survive winter in the Himalayas, often in groups of 20 or more, treading away the thin soggy winter grass.

We mention this from the viewpoint of an older generation with the benefit of a well developed, if possibly subversive, sense of proportion and a preference for the way some things used to be.

From being something local shepherds did when they had no option, hill walking has become a passion for some, a reason for living for others, an exhilarating pleasure, or something to be carefully avoided in favour of a few pints by the pub fire.

The above comments aside, there are risks on the hills especially outside the summer season. Get aware of the sensible precautions to take. Read the ‘STAY SAFE’ page on the Langdale/Ambleside MRT’s website

These walks are described in detail on John Dawson’s Lake District Walks website
and we give the relevant link.
Loughrigg, Sergeant Man and Tarn Crag
White Moss – Loughrigg (via caves) – Silver How – Blea Rigg – Sergeant Man – Tarn Crag – Grasmere – White Moss (Grid ref. NY 348066).

This walk starts from the A591 White Moss car parks at Rydal, takes you high above Grasmere towards the Langdale Pikes and back via Easedale.
Total Distance 12.1 miles, Total Ascent 3300 feet, Equivalent Distance 18.8 miles. Details

The Langdale Pikes and Sergeant Man
New Dungeon Ghyll – Loft Crag – Pike o’Stickle – Harrison Stickle – Pavey Ark – Thunacar Knott – High Raise – Sergeant Man – Blea Rigg – New Dungeon Ghyll (Grid ref. NY 296064)
This walk starts in Great Langdale, takes you up to the Langdale Pikes and back, including a couple of other nearby summits.
Total Distance 6.5 miles, Total Ascent 3400 feet, Equivalent Distance 13.2 miles. Details
Red Screes & Dove Crag
Ambleside – Red Screes – Little Hart Crag – Dove Crag – High Pike – Ambleside (Grid ref. NY 377046)
Starting at the town centre, this walk takes you into the high fells north of Ambleside, eventually giving fine views of Ullswater and the Helvellyn range, and Windermere as you return.
Total Distance 9.5 miles, Total Ascent 3500 feet, Equivalent Distance 16.6 miles. Details
Fairfield Horseshoe
Ambleside – Nab Scar – Heron Pike – Great Rigg – Fairfield – Hart Crag – Dove Crag – High Pike – Ambleside (Grid ref. NY 377046).
This is perhaps the best known and most popular long walk from Ambleside, giving similar views northwards as the Red Screes walk. This route is clockwise, ascending steep Nab Scar first. A lot of people do it anti-clockwise, either way it’s a great walk. There is in places no discernable footpath on the bare tops of Fairfield and Hart Crag and it is quite easy to lose your way in cloud, ending up anywhere from Grasmere to Patterdale. This is no reason not to do the walk – just take care and a compass.
Total Distance 10.1 miles, Total Ascent 3100 feet, Equivalent Distance 16.4 miles. Details
Scafell Pike from Langdale
Old Dungeon Ghyll – Rossett Gill – Esk Hause – Scafell Pike – Great End – Esk Pike – Bowfell – Three Tarns – Old Dungeon Ghyll (Grid ref. NY 286060)
Bag England’s highest peak and see some the Lake District’s famous rock climbing crags.
Total Distance 11.2 miles, Total Ascent 4600 feet, Equivalent Distance 20.4 miles Details