North Lakes

Famous for its majestic lakes, lowland forests and windswept hills the Lake District is England's largest National Park. It is home to Scafell Pike, England's highest mountain and Wastwater, the country's deepest lake.

This tour of the North Lakes starts at the thriving market town of Keswick and broadly follows the course of the Bob Graham Round endurance run, diverting where necessary to reach overnight accommodation. Departing Keswick you climb Skiddaw, the hill to the north that towers over the town. From Skiddaw summit you head north east across wild moorland to Great Calva before heading south to Blencathra and a traverse of the Helvellyn Range.

From the beautiful village of Grasmere you walk west crossing the Langdale Pikes, Bowfell, Great End and Scafell Pike before descending to Wastwater and the isolated inn at Wasdale Head. From here the trail takes you north over Red Pike, Steeple, Pillar, Kirk Fell, Great Gable, Hay Stacks and High Stile.

After an evening spent in picturesque Buttermere you climb out of the village to Whiteless Pike, Hopegill Head and Grisedale Pike before descending to Braithwaite village and Keswick.

This is a tough 5-6 day challenge that will test your hill walking fitness and stamina. Along the way you will climb the most iconic mountains of England and experience breathtaking scenery, beautiful villages and classic English country pubs.

With it excellent road connections, bus services, gear shops, hotels and pubs Keswick is a great place to start and end your trip. However, as the tour is circular you can start and end at any point, Grasmere village just north of Ambleside is another popular starting point for example.

The walking distances each day may vary depending on the accommodation you choose each night. Large groups may need to use hotels and inns in villages nearby. We can provide transport for the group between the trail and your accommodation.

With the 6 day itinerary, the climb over Scafell Pike to Wasdale Head is slightly easier as the day is shorter. For the adventurous, the shorter day from Grasmere to Great Langdale gives you time to climb Jack's Rake, an easy but fun scramble above Stickle Tarn.

Wast Water, Lake District, England

Five Days

Day 1 - Keswick to Threlkeld - 12.5 miles / 20 kms
Day 2 - Thelkeld to Grasmere - 14 miles / 23 kms
Day 3 - Grasmere to Wasdale Head - 16 miles / 26 kms
Day 4 - Wasdale Head to Buttermere - 15 miles / 24 kms
Day 5 - Buttermere to Keswick - 11 miles / 18 kms

Thirlmere from Helvellyn, Lake District, England

Six Days

Day 1 - Keswick to Threlkeld - 12.5 miles / 20 kms
Day 2 - Thelkeld to Grasmere - 14 miles / 23 kms
Day 3 - Grasmere to Great Langdale - 8 miles / 12 kms
Day 4 - Great Langdale to Wasdale Head - 11 miles / 18 kms
Day 5 - Wasdale Head to Buttermere - 15 miles / 24 kms
Day 6 - Buttermere to Keswick - 11 miles / 18 kms

The two itineraries are within the ability of most regular hill walkers. However should members of the group decide to skip a day we will provide transport to your next hotel. All our holidays include luggage transfers each day so you can enjoy your walk without having to carry a heavy pack.

Booking accommodation is by far the biggest challenge when organising a walking holiday. We have listed some of the better hotels and inns with links to TripAdvisor where you can read customer reviews and check prices and availability.

If you like an early start, when booking accommodation check the time breakfast is served in the morning. All should be able to provide packed lunches. For those finishing late, check when evening meals end.

For groups of 6 or more people we can help organise your holiday and provide support services during your walk. These include group transport, luggage and group transfers each day, first aid support and an accommodation booking service.

Luggage Transfers

Your bags are collected each morning and moved between hotels and inns leaving you to enjoy each day without having to carry a heavy pack.

Group Transport

With our minibuses and trailers we can transport your group and luggage from your home or Penrith train station to the start and back again at the end.

Hotel Reservations

Due to the shortage of accommodation, especially during the summer months, finding rooms for a group can be difficult. Our accommodation booking service can help.

Trail Support

For groups we can provide trail support. A driver and minibus will provide assistance when needed. Your luggage, hot and cold drinks and food will be available in the vehicle.

Guiding

Navigation along the trail can be difficult particularly in adverse weather. Some groups enjoy having a guide walk with them to provide help and encouragement.

Local Transfers

On long days walking distances can be reduced by descending to a road. We will then meet you and provide minibus transport to your accommodation.

The journey time between Penrith train station and Keswick is approximately 30 minutes. If you are parking your car in Keswick or Grasmere there are several long term car parks available.

Tell us about the trip you are planning and the services that you would like us to provide. We will then confirm availability of accommodation and vehicles and provide prices.

The Trail

  • Distance: 69 miles / 111 kms
  • Ascent: 29,906 feet / 9,115 metres
  • Duration: 5-6 days
  • Start/End: Keswick or Grasmere

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Gallery

Wainwright Word Map

Wainwright Word Art Map

This high quality digital artwork maps the 214 Wainwrights (fells) of the Lake District.