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Index of Photos
Index of Panoramas
Index of Zoom Images
Index of Trips

E-mail the author from your browser or, if you don't use your browser for mail, from a form
Glossary Meaning and origin of Lakeland terms
GPS Information, routes for the walks
Highlights Places or parts of walks that seem special - with star ratings
Jottings The author's love of Lakeland
Links Lake District and Outdoor Links plus a page of sites that link to this one
List of Lakeland Felltops - in order of height, and which walks include them
Screen Saver Lake District Walks Screen Saver for Win95/98/NT/2000/ME/XP.
Visitors' Book See what others thought of the site
Walk Distance Calculator Calculate automatically your own Lake District walk distance
Walkers' Responsibilities Useful information on equipment, food & drink and suchlike
Weather A brief guide to Lakeland Weather and a link to the daily forecast

Index of Highlights



Quality Rating

Anxiety Rating

West Wall TraverseScafell*********
Jack's RakePavey Ark*********
Striding EdgeHelvellyn********
Shamrock TraversePillar*******
Swirral EdgeHelvellyn*******
Summit RidgeWhiteside/Hopegill Head*****
Sharp EdgeBlencathra********
Bad Step and RidgeCrinkle Crags******
North RidgeMardale Ill Bell*****
Northwest RidgeCatstye Cam****
Rough CragHigh Street****
East RidgeDollywagon Pike****
SummitKidsty Pike***

E-mail the Author

If you have any comments to make about these pages feel free to e-mail me at .

When mailing for advice please ensure you include useful information such as, where you are coming from, going to, where you are staying, do you have transport...

Lake District and Outdoor Links

The Cumbria Directory Local Information
Cumbria Tourist Board Cumbria Tourist Information
Lake District National Park Authority
Lake District Search and Mountain Rescue Association
Mad About Mountains (with Skiddaw daily weather report)
Official Lake District National Park Site
Sherpavan (Walkers' Door-to-door Baggage Transport)
Hikideas walk planner Use online OS maps to plan walks that can be printed out, saved or exported as GPX files Stacks of Information on Cumbria - Places to Visit, Places to Stay...
The Wainwright Society Followers of Alfred Wainwright
The Walking Connection (Worldwide)
World Outdoor Web

Links within this site

Lake District Walks Outline Page
Home Page
Links to this site A list of sites known to contain links to this one

Notes on the Writer's Love Affair with the Lake District

My first experience of the Lakeland was in 1963 when I came Youth Hostelling for a week. It rained for the first six and a half days. In that final afternoon, as I walked along Borrowdale to Keswick to catch the coach home to Newcastle, the sun came out. I was captivated. The view over Derwentwater, to Cat Bells and Causey Pike, looked so wonderful I knew I had to come back.

I had not ventured onto the felltops that year, but did so the following summer. My first ascent of Great Gable was straight up the screes after a lunchtime session with friends at the Wasdale Head Hotel. The following Easter, in a party from Nottingham University, I had my first experience of foolhardiness on the peaks in snow. Our navigator managed to get us lost on the High Level route on Pillar and we ended up climbing Great Doup without any snow equipment. What possessed us to trust him again I'll never know, but we lost our way a couple of days later, on the exit from Lord's Rake, climbing Scafell. I've done my own navigation ever since.

My visit's grew more and more frequent during the seventies and although I've done some walking in Wales and Scotland it was always Lakeland that drew me back. I settled in Kendal in the late eighties.

Poucher's "Lakeland Peaks" sufficed as a guidebook during my student years, but once I started earning I bought Wainwright's Guides. They cost 18/- each at the time; equivalent in today's terms to about nine pounds, so nothing's really changed there. They allowed me to design my own routes, something I've done ever since. I have walked all the routes described here and I hope you enjoy the selection.


the ridge of a hill; from the Middle English bande
a stream; from the Old Norse bekkr
a shelter, protection; from the Old English beldo, courage
Probably from the Welsh blaen, summit, and cateir, chair, i.e. the chair-shaped mountain. Whilst it means much the same, I prefer it to the insipid Saddleback, the fell's other name, which hardly does justice to this magnificent eminence.
Brocken spectre
A shadow of the viewer cast by the sun onto cloud. It is often surrounded by coloured, rainbow-like lights (glories). Named after the highest of the Harz mountains where witches are said to gather on Walpurgis Night.
Cat Bells
the cat's den; from the Middle English belde a bield, or shelter
a rough steep rock; derivation uncertain
a valley; from the Old Norse dalr
a mountain, or hill, or upland tract; from the Old Norse fjall, a rock
gill, or ghyll
a small ravine; from the Old Norse gil, a steep sided valley
a low hill; from the Old Norse haugr
a craggy hill; from the Old Norse knutr
a sharp-pointed hill; from the Old English pic, a spike
a path up a hill or in a gully; from the Old Norse rak, a stripe
a bare , craggy rock formation; from the Old Norse sker
a pass or gap in a ridge; from the Old Norse skarth
a sharp peak; from the Old Norse stikill
a small mountain lake; from the Old Norse tjorn
a piece of land reclaimed from forest or wetlands; from the Old Norse thveit, a paddock
an uncastrated ram; origin unknown
a castrated ram; from the Old English wether

Lakeland Weather

Mean maximum daily temperatures in the valleys vary from about 7°C in January and February to 15° in May, 19° in August and 13° in October. On the high fells it is typically 5° lower. The dryest months are from March to June: August has about 50% more rain than those and December twice as much. The actual amounts vary considerably with location. Pooley Bridge, at one end of Ullswater, gets typically 50" per year, whilst Patterdale at the other manages 100". Sprinkling Tarn, by the Scafell massif, has achieved 150". These data are based on information originally from the Met. Office.

Having said this the weather here is notoriously unpredictable. The most reliable daily forecasts are from the National Parks Lake District Weather Line 0844 846 2444 and from Radio Cumbia usually at 6.30 (weekdays only), 7.30 and 8.30 am. Both also give the felltop conditions. "Most reliable" is, however, a relative term and even these can be misleading except when the weather is stable countrywide. My advice to potential visitors is that unless the forecast is really bad come in any case. Some years ago I holidayed here in May and there were heavy snowfalls the first night. Three days later I climbed Scafell Pike in glorious sunshine and with about 4" of snow on the ground. It was wonderful! If you are here already, and the forcast is similarly doubtful, go out walking anyway, because you'll kick yourself if you don't and it turns out better than expected. There is a felltop forecast from the Lakeland Weather Line.

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