Lake Buttermere Walk

Lake Buttermere Walk

The lake of Buttermere is surrounded by the significant high fells of High Stile to the south west, Fleetwith Pike and Haystack to the south east, Robinson to the North East and Grasmore to the north west. Such walks would be considered as moderate walks.

This lovely four and a half mile walk around Buttermere is more a good quality family walk of great beauty, almost entirely on good foot paths. Of special interest on your Buttermere walk is where the foot path passes through a rock tunnel. Whilst considered by many to be the most beautiful of all the lakes within the Lake District.

The village of Buttermere is situated to the north western edge of the lake and very busy on weekends and school holidays.

Within the small church of St James, on the fringes of Buttermere village at the junction of Honister and Newlands passes, you will find a stone memorial tablet set into a south facing window sill to commemorate Alfred Wainwright. The window looks outwards towards his favourite walk, Haystacks. Where it’s interesting to note his ashes were scattered.

Buttermere Walk

You will find car parking in the small car park near the Fish Hotel or on the main road. Start walking down along the rough farm road to the left of the Fish Hotel. With the road bending towards the left go through a gate. After approximately 140m go through the gate ahead of you and follow the clear foot path towards Buttermere lake. Do not go through the gate to the right which leads to Scale Force. Pass through the further gate at the lake side which is a National Trust sign. Turning right towards Sour Milk Gill, which you should see coming down the mountainside before crossing the small bridge. As with all Lake District waterfalls and streams there best seen after a nights rainfall. With the name Sour Milk referring to the white water and its similarity to off milk.

Having crossed the small footbridge, turn left and go through the small gate into Burtness wood. Following the clearly marked path along the waters edge continue upon your route. You will come to a split in the footpath, and keeping to the waters edge path continue on. After about ¾ of a mile pass through a small gate, continue upon the clear path until you come alongside a stone wall and cross a footbridge. Once over the bridge make your way along the lakeside path between the fences. At the farm, go through the small gate and turn right alongside the stream to the road. Turn left over the bridge.

After a short distance the road once again runs by the lakeside, before bending away yet again. Return to the footpath along the waters edge for one mile. Here you will pass through a tunnel of rock making your way to the far end of the Buttermere lake. With the lake shore to your left you will see a small gate to go through and up rough rocks to another small gate following the clearly marked pathway. This will now take you back to the village of Buttermere.

Tarn Hows Walk

Tarn Hows

No matter where we live, we love our walks, family walks, walks with the dog or solitary walks for thinking. Yet if we could all pick a walk for all seasons that was close to where we live I think this might just be it. This is a great family walk.

A Tarn Hows walk may simply consist of a walk around the lake, although I would advise to include a short diversion down to Glen Mary Bridge, returning via the waterfalls, thus adding a mere mile to your walk.

Monk Coniston Hall was once home to the 19th century industrialist James Garth Marshall, the Victorian creator of Tarn Hows which is located between the villages of Coniston and Hawkshead.

Tarn How may be somewhat artificial by nature, whilst set within one of England’s grandest National Parks, yet the beauty and splendour are considerable. As a result of this and sharing similarities to Cat Bells walk vast numbers of visitors are attracted here each summer. Therefore it may be better to do this walk out of season, when you may be fortunate enough to be rewarded with the peace and tranquillity the scenery and setting deserve, without the large number of visitors and those having summer picnics.

You may consider walking the picturesque route created by James Garth to wow guests at his country residence of Monk Coniston Hall to Tarn Hows or from Coniston village. Either way you will be rewarded with some wonderful scenery and look out for the Old Man of Coniston walk, maybe for another day.

Tarn Hows walk

Leaving the car park entrance closest to the lake, turn right along the road. Almost immediately leave the road and the track curves left. Within a short distance fork left onto a grassy path. Follow the path over the top of the ridge and down the far side to meet a wall on the right. The path continues down hill , curving left and then right. Continue on through the gate, at the wall corner bend left. Upon reaching the ruined barn follow the wide track to the gate. In the lane turn right and continue down the path to the road at Glen Mary Bridge.

Crossing the footbridge over the stream to the right and turn right through the small gate. Continue up the left hand side of the stream. Keeping with the stream as it bends its way past the magnificent waterfalls you should see signs for ‘Tom Gill Waterfall’ Once at the top of the fall go through the small gate in a fence, making your way up the path along the stream to reach the Tarn Hows at the stream outflow.

Here you should see a broad well maintained path. This path goes completely around the tarn, ultimately returning to the stream outflow and concludes your walk.

There is a small stone to the south east of Tarn Hows, inscribed;
National Trust The Tarns are given in memory of Sir James Scot of Yews and of Anne Lady Scot, 1930.

The view from the memorial stone over Tarn Hows, is superb and one of the best, most photographed in all of the Lake District. Not forgetting that the tarn is artificial and the water level was raised by a dam and weir constructed at the south west tip, thus creating a single tarn. With trees alien to the Lake District were planted. This is a great example of what can be achieved by sensible and creative countryside development.

The name ‘The Tarns’ refers to its earlier existence prior to the raising of the water levels with the damn, when there were several stretches of water.

Ullswater Lake Walks

Ullswater Lake Walks

Ullswater Lake Walks

Ullswater Lake Walks – Glenridding To Howtown and Back

It is easy to walk up and down dale so to speak here in the Lake District, although should you be looking for a stunningly beautiful low level lake walk, along the shores of arguably one of England’s finest lakes here is the Ullswater lake walk sfor you.

I have named my walk the Ullswater Lake walks, Howtown to Glenridding which will reward you with stunning views of the Ullswater valley and the Helvellyn mountain range.

What makes this particular Lake walks special is the different perspective given with the commencement of the walk at the Glenridding pier of the Ullswater Steamer where we embarked.

Taking the Steamer ride from the Glenridding pier first check out the time table for the Steamer and allow time for your walk of approximately three and a half hours. The walk is just over 10 km and should you desire it is possible, time of year and current timetable permitting, to take the Steamer from Pooley Bridge to Howtown inclusive.

Embarking at Glenridding we travelled Ullswater Lake towards Howtown on a brisk November day with little wind and a mirror like lake. This particular time of year rewards the intrepid walker with a vast array of changing autumnal colours with cold and frosty mornings being particularly good.

Disembarking at Howtown we arranged our equipment and for the first time we used our Lake District walks Handheld  GPS ( follow link for our way points route and map ) which I have to say was excellent.

Upon leaving the pier the path is clearly visible to your right and a good quality path takes you over a small bridge. The small footpath will take your towards a single track road servicing a home. Walking a short distance along the road a sign post for Patterdale Sandwick will be visible taking you a short distance towards the slightly inclined steps with a stone wall to your right and then through a swing gate.

Once through the gate the path splits and taking the right hand path this will keep you on the Lake walk leaving Howtown. This new section of the walk will reward you with clear Lakeland views across Ullswater Lake and towards Pooley Bridge. The footpath at this point is well maintained and generally dry in most weathers.

Lake Walks Vantage Points

From your vantage point at this stage of your Ullswater Lake walk it is possible to make out the stunningly beautiful Aira Force Waterfall set upon the opposite Western shore of Ullswater. Whilst also not forgetting that the daffodils still grow in the spring time at Glencoyne Bay close to Aira Force, when William Wordsworth wrote what later became the most famous poem in the English language.

“I wandered lonely as a cloud

That floats on high o’er vales and hills, When all at once I saw a crowd, A host, of golden daffodils;”

Poet I will never be, although with measured motion I struck again and struck again my feet upon the ground continuing onwards with stone wall upon my right and arguably England finest lake upon my right.

With the path now heading southwards you will find several delightful spots with close access to the lake and possible spots for cooling the feet on a hot summer’s day with paddling or a spot for the dog to chase stone thrown into the still waters.

Leaving the water’s edge with a gentle climb upwards you will enter Hallinhagg Wood where the footpath becomes uneven and you may catch a glimpse of a Red Squirrel or two here.

Upon spotting the odd felled tree with some of the off cuts piled in some format of organised chaos this practice is undertaken to help Hedgehogs in creating slow rotting environments for our woodland animals.

With the beck now upon your right which meanders down to Silver Bay continue onwards away from Ullswater towards Beck Side Farm and Sandwick. Follow the path which is situated to the left of Townhead Cottage sign posted Patterdale.

As you now traverse Silver Crag it may be possible to see Lyulph’s Tower which is a 16th Century castellated building situated near to Gowbarrow Fell which will be behind you as you walk forwards. Moving forwards and coming into view will be the Helvellyn mountain range and possibly Helvellyn Via Striding Edge which I have to say is one of my personal favourite high level walks (adventure).

With the path now continuing towards Patterdale it gradually turns into a farm track and from here you can recall the start of your walk from the Glenridding Steamer pier on the now opposite shore.

Upon reaching the farm continue along the track as it heads towards the Goldrill Beck and the main road as it returns you on your Ullswater Lake walks back to the Glenridding pier.

Ullswater Lake Walks On The Ullswater Steamer

Should you wish to see better quality photographs of this Ullswater Lake walks please visit Ullswater Lake Walks on our Lake District Walks Flickr account.

I hope you enjoyed my Ullswater Lake walks using the Ullswater Steamer from Glenridding to Howtown and the walk back, please hit the like buttons below.