Loughrigg Fell from Ambleside.

Start. Ambleside.

Route. Ambleside - Scandale Bridge - Rydal Park - Rydal Hall - Steps End - Rydal Cave - Loughrigg Terrace - Loughrigg Fell - Black Mire - Todd Crag - Miller Brow - Miller Bridge - Rothay Park - Ambleside.

Notes. Nestled between the tourist honey pots of Ambleside and Grasmere, Loughrigg Fell can lay claim to being a walkers magnet, at any time of year every man and his dog, young and old can be found wandering it's many paths, but never fear there's enough room for everyone. Many rocky outcrops, hidden tarns and grassy enclaves adorn the vast plateau, wander but a few yards off the beaten track and you have the hill, and views to yourself. So come take a stroll, the weather was unusually dry, not only the ascent will take your breath away the views will to.

The hum of traffic accompanied me north out of Ambleside, on reaching the entrance to Rydal Park I left the traffic behind, a lovely walk through a man made landscape followed, I was soon passing Rydal Hall to be confronted by Rydal Mount, once home to a famous poet. I descended the lane back to the main road where I entered Steps End Wood. The path that guided me passed between ancient oaks kissing the Rydal Water shore line. On leaving the woods I ascended to a higher path, this trod once echoed to the sound of hob nail boots on stone, the quarrymen have long gone, to be replaced by the chatter of many tourists clad in gortex. It carried me and many other like minded walkers passed Rydal Cave to access Loughrigg Terrace, the views from this terrace carved into the flanks of the fell are quite stunning. At the end of the terrace a path abruptly branches off, instantly climbing the north face of the fell, I made my ascent, steep in places, a pitch path guiding me upwards, after several pauses for breath I crested the summit, the trig point welcomed me with wonderful views to all points of the compass, stretching to the south, kissing the skyline a shimmering body of water, Windermere Lake, to the north-west dressed to thrill in winter garb the unmistakable Langdale Pikes, to the north the vale that inspired many a famous poet, the Vale of Grasmere.

I sat a while, had a brew, took some photos before taking my leave. South-east across the fell I wandered, the main path meandered through a landscape of low crags and rocky knolls, passed small unnamed tarns where stepping stones aided my crossing of boggy ground. I wandered passed Lad Crag, trudged over Black Mire before fording the beck that drains the vast tract of wet land. In the company of a dry stone wall I wandered, passed Todd Crag then little Lily Tarn, the next tarn, unnamed on the map is guardian of a row of crags overlooking Windermere Lake, locally known as Todd Crags, this row of low rocky summits gifts the lucky walker with wonderful views the length of the lake, and over the lowlands of south Lakeland, I sat a while drinking in said view before turning my back on the scene. A ladder stile at the eastern edge of the crags aided my crossing of a dry stone wall, once across a number of muddy paths guided me off the fell, a wooden foot-bridge spanned Miller Gill, I crossed before stepping onto a lane at Miller Brow. I descended the lane before crossing delightful Miller Bridge, on this occasion I followed the path running along the northern edge of Rothay Park, the most direct route back.

view route map.


Great Rigg and Fairfield seen from Rydal Park. Ever wondered where the name Rydal originates, old norse, "valley where the rye grows", I think it's safe to presume I am wandering through a landscape originally cleared to grow crops.

Viewing Loughrigg Fell across Rydal Park.

Nab Scar looms above the buildings of the Rydal Hall complex.

From Steps End views across Rydal Water to Silver How, on a day like today you can just imagine our famous bard sitting on the lake shore composing his sonnets.

Viewing Loughrigg Fell and Silver How from Steps End.

Catching the morning sun, Helm Crag.

Across the northern skyline under snow, Ullscarf and Greenup Edge

Views taken over the steep slopes of Nab Scar, Low Pike with Red Screes under a dusting of snow.

Seen over sylvan White Moss Common, dark on the horizon, Helm Crag and Steel Fell.

Silver How seen from the approach to Loughrigg Terrace.

Looking down on the islands of Rydal Water, Heron Island and Little Isle.

From Loughrigg Terrace stunning views over Grasmere.

Cutting a route between the steep slopes of Steel Fell and Seat Sandal, the pass of Dunmail Raise.

Breath-taking views over Grasmere.

Dominating the western skyline Wetherlam.

Seen from the steep slopes of Loughrigg Fell, the head of Great Langdale, Crinkle Crags, Bow Fell and the unmistakable Langdale Pikes.

Views over Huntingstile Crag, Pike of Stickle, Harrison Stickle and Pavey Ark.

Wonderful views over the valleys of Far Easedale and Easedale, dominating the skyline Ullscarf.

The summit Loughrigg Fell, looking to Red Screes and the snow covered ridges leading to Ill Bell.

Outstanding views to Wetherlam and the Coniston massif, the notch on the skyline being the Wrynose Pass, the bodies of water, Loughrigg Tarn and Elter Water.

From an unnamed tarn on Loughrigg Fell splendid views to Yoke, Ill Bell and Froswick with Red Screes rising to the left.

Low and High Pike seen from another unnamed body of water hidden in the folds of Loughrigg Fell.

Windermere Lake and the low lands of south Lakeland.

From Todd Crag a stunning view.

Views north over Loughrigg Fell.

Finally mighty Fairfield guards and closes the head of Rydal valley.

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