Classic Wansfell Pike.

Start. Ambleside.

Route. Ambleside - Stockghyll Lane - Wansfell Pike - Nanny Lane - Troutbeck - Robin Lane - Hol Beck - Lowwood Hotel - A591 - Anbleside.

Notes. Ambleside the starting point for today's wanderings, forever in the shadow of Wansfell Pike, an iconic little hill if you can call just under 1,600ft little. Ascended by many pairs of boots, their owners first taste of Lakeland rock, many get caught out by those aggressively steep northern slopes, the easy ascents are from the Troutbeck side but no where near as interesting. For those brave or foolhardy enough to ascend from Ambleside the rewards are life changing, I've spoke to many a seasoned walker on many a Lakeland fell top who's first mountain panorama was from the summit of this iconic little hill. This is definitely a Lakeland classic, always busy, to escape the crowds (and there were plenty) I slipped in a short diversion, a sting in the tail. After fording Hol Beck I descended through freshly cut meadows on a path that lead to Lowwood Hotel.

I was forced to make a late start today, the morning was a mixed bag of thunder, lightning and torrential rain, I parked in the Low Fold car park on Lake Road opposite the Garden Centre, reluctantly paid the fee before heading into Ambleside. By the time I ascended Stockghyll Lane the cost of parking was forgotten, the short walk over tarmac brought me to a sign inviting me to Troutbeck via Wansfell Pike. I had my climbing legs on today, the unforgiving ascent felt easy, I soon found myself scrambling onto the rocky summit. After soaking up the views, I stepped through a nice new gate onto the path leading to Nanny Lane.

The dry stone walls of Nanny Lane guided me down hill to Troutbeck, where I turned right to head through the village. Rising behind the Post Office another lane, Robin Lane, I ascended between more dry stone walls before descending into the shallow valley of Hol Beck, after crossing the beck I stepped into the drive leading to High Skelghyll, the normal route back to Ambleside. My way was the quiet, a few paces up the lane a finger-post directed me to Lowwood Hotel, a path I'd never set foot on before. What followed was a long easy descent through fields gifting me with stunning views, the length of Windermere Lake, the Coniston massif plus the monsters at the head of Langdale all on show, the car park at the Lowwood Hotel marked the end of my descent. The next bit was the boring bit, the sting in the tail, a stretch of pavement walking back to Ambleside, with wonderful views between the trees that line the lake shore to my left, the noisy traffic to my right I wandered back, stopping every once in a while to admire those wonderful views.

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Above Stockghyll Force which I didn't visit today, looking up the steep slopes of Wansfell Pike.

On the lower slopes of Wansfell Pike looking to a Langdale skyline.

Rising high into a blanket of cloud. Wetherlam and the Coniston massif, the notch in the skyline just under the cloud base is the Wrynose Pass.

Taking a breather looking down on Ambleside with Wetherlam on a stormy horizon.

The unfolding panorama, across the skyline, the Langdale Pikes, High Raise the centre of Lakeland with Ullscarf just rising above Nab Scar.

Viewing Kirkstone Pass with Red Screes and Caudale Moor under cloud.

Nearing the summit viewing Wetherlam over the wooded slopes of Black Fell.

The lit ridge of Baystones with a vale of cloud enshrouding everything to the north except Kirkstone Pass.

Seen from the summit of Wansfell Pike, under leaden skies the length of Windermere.

Under cloud Ill Bell with sunlight on the gentle slopes of The Hundreds.

Between the dry stone walls in Nanny Lane looking over Troutbeck to Sour Howes.

A small slice of Troutbeck.

Above the white washed buildings of Troutbeck Ill Bell rises, it's head in cloud.

Views down Robin Lane.

At the summit of Robin Lane with views down Windermere Lake, the high ground being Gummer's How with the sylvan slopes of Claife Heights tumbling to the western shore.

Still under cloud Coniston Old Man, to the right Wetherlam.

Seen beyond Newclose Wood, Gummer's How and Claife Heights.

Striding out through the fields above Lowwood Hotel looking to the dark ridge of Lingmoor Fell.

Wray across Windermere with Coniston Old Man under cloud.

The prospect west taking in Wetherlam over Windermere Lake.

Coniston Old Man seen across Windermere.

Viewing Lingmoor Fell and the Langdale Pikes.

Approaching Waterhead looking across Windermere.

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