Hill Walking in the Lake District

photo: Will4Adventure

With its plethora of dales, vales and emerald green lakes, what better place to see the rugged beauty of England’s landscape than the glorious Lake District
? It’s all here for you, from low rambling valley paths to high mountain ridge routes. And, within the Lake District lie the four highest mountains of England – Scafel Pike, Scafel, Helvelyn and Skiddaw. Known as the English 3000′s – to bag all four in a weekend is a proper Lake District challenge!

What’s recommended?

The Langdale Valley, Patterdale, Borrowdale and Wasdale are some great starting points to venture from. For something easy – head up and along Catbells; for remote, stroll along the Eskdale Valley; for high, head up England’s highest mountain, Scafell Pike and for adventure, scramble the length of Striding Edge More routes can be found on Outdoors Magic and for Guided Walks including two and three day treks, see adventure specialists Will4Adventure who will happily cater for all abilities with their range of weekend walks and treks.

What skills do I need?

Before embarking on a day in the Hills and Mountains you should at the very least be able to use a map and compass. Having an eye for the weather, and knowing what to pack in your day-sack will also be invaluable knowledge. If you’re not sure how to look after yourself you should consider booking yourself onto a course to teach you these Hill Skills.

What about equipment for Hill Walking?

a. Main rules of thumb:

  • Steer clear of all things cotton (no jeans on the hill!)

  • Whatever you use, make sure it’s comfortable

  • Waterproof all your bag by lining it – covers are ok but far from perfect

b. You will need:

Day-sack (lined with a plastic bag)

Water bottle with about 1-2 litres of water


Comfortable boots to walk in

Torch (even for day walks)

Personal 1st Aid kit including blister kit

OS Map sheets 1:50,000 No.110 & 119



Walking poles – never underestimate how good these are

Coast to Coast (C2C)

A coast to coast walk was devised by Alfred Wainwright, and stretches across 190 miles from St Bees Head on the west coast to Robin Hood’s Bay in the east, passing through the Lake District, Yorkshire Dales, and North York Moors. Why not make this mammoth trek your goal?

The Three Peaks

And finally, you may be thinking about doing the Three Peaks Challenge. We don’t recommend this challenge for many reasons. Principally it’s not sound nor responsible practice. With 900 miles of driving it’s not environmentally ethical; the locals in these villages get fed up with all the noise at all hours (and with the toilet waste that people in a hurry leave behind); and quite honestly trotting up hills by the most unimaginative routes with hundreds of others can rarely be described as fun or exhilarating . . . there are plenty of fund raising ideas better than this that are truly challenging and imaginative whilst being responsible.