10 Easier Family Walks in the Lake District You Should Try
The Lake District boasts numerous fells and countless walks up them, from our very own Scafell Pike, to Helvellyn, Old Man of Coniston to Skiddaw and Blencathra. That’s not to say that there aren’t plenty of easier walks in the Lake District, suitable for families and children. Of course, you’ll know your kids and if they’d rather be scaling Great Gable or Catbells.
Are they these the best easier walks in the Lakes? We don’t think it’s possible to compile a list of only 10 easier walks in the Lake District without leaving a few gems out! If we’ve missed your favourite our, then tell us in the comments! We might even be tempted to add it to the list. All these walks are from our sister site – Mud and Routes.
Ensure that you check out the weather forecast before setting out and that your’re properly equipped and prepared for the walk.
Height Gained – 190 metres , Distance – 6.5 km, Time –2 hours
Recently voted one of the nation’s top 100 walks, the coffin route follows the old corpse road between the two villages of Ambleside and Grasmere. It’s a good track, initially passing through Rydal Park and passing two of Wordsworth’s homes; Rydal Mount and Dove Cottage. The Coffin Route then continues high above Rydal Water and then on to Grasmere. You’ll need to account for the return trip for this walk, which is a reasonable 13km in both directions or you can catch a bus back to the start.
Height Gained – 180 metres , Distance – 4.7 km, Time –2 hours
While the summit of Loughrigg Fell makes a good lower summit, this is an easier walk that’s much more manageable. This walk takes you to the tiny and picturesque Lily Tarn above Ambleside, and ideal spot for an active family picnic.
Height Gained – 90 metres , Distance – 2 km, Time –1 hours
You know that feeling, dragging the kids uphill, to complaints that there’s too much walking. Well you shouldn’t get many complaints with this walk from Keswick up Latrigg.. At only 2km in length and a barely perceptible climb of only 90m, this is a view that’s easily attained. The views should get them ready and raring to go for the next summit!
Height Gained – 160 metres , Distance – 7 km, Time –2 hours
You don’t need to climb a mountain for extensice views. The Castlerigg Stone Circle is so perfectly positioned, with extensive views towards Blencathra and Skiddaw. Those ancient Britons were quite in tune with their natural surroundings, and you get a feel of that walking around the stones. Fun Fact – try and get the kids counting the stones and see if anyone gets the same number. ¡¿sʍouʞ oɥʍ = ɹǝʍsu∀
Height Gained – 200 metres , Distance – 3.6 km, Time –1.5 hours
Another walk from Keswick, and we’ll keep ’em coming! Wall Crag is 379m high, and is more of a viewpoint than a true summit, but worth an hour or two of your time.
Height Gained –100 metres , Distance – 2.3 km, Time –1 hour
Orrest Head has a particular importance in the history of fell walking in the Lake District. It was the first fell that Alfred Wainwright climbed, and the hill we have to thank for inspiring him to write his series of iconic Lake District guidebooks. Ascend this hill from the railway station, just as Wainwright did.
Height Gained –200 metres , Distance – 6 km, Time –2 hours
An easy walk from Patterdale to Silver Bay on Ullswater. It returns on a higher bridleway, but you can also return the same way of you wanted an easier walk with less ascent. Good walking with both hills and lakes to enjoy.
Height Gained – 400 metres , Distance – 6.3 km, Time –2 hours
No trip with the family to the Lake District would be complete without a climb up Catbells. Beware that this is a challenging little walk – and is classed ‘easier’ as compared to the surrounding hills rather than ‘easy’. As parking is an issue,make a day of it and get to the walk start with the Keswick Launch to Hawes End.
Height Gained –300 metres , Distance – 8.4 km, Time –3 hours
Tarn Hows is one of the most visited and scenic locations in the Lake District. While many will visit from their car, get active and view it in all it’s glory with this wonderful short walk. While the full route is a touch over the 8km we mention in the introduction, it’s been included as the route is easily cut short by missing out the summit of Black Fell by cutting across the circuit a bit sooner. A much easier loop can be completed by just walking around Tarn Hows
Height Gained –450 metres , Distance 7.5 km, Time –3 hours
From the depths of Great Langdale, you can walk up to Blea Tarn. Surely this is one of the most scenic of the Lake District’s tarns, with the Langdale Pikes as a backdrop. It’s certainly among one of the more accessible. While the full walk is a sturdy 7.5km with 450 metres of climbing, you can easily cut the walk short by excluding Lingmoor Fell from this walk.
Gear you may need
Welcome to Walk up Scafell Pike
Walk up Scafell Pike is the dedicated on-line guidebook for walking routes up Scafell Pike in the English Lake District, with free walking maps and full guides to all the routes to the summit of England’s highest mountain.
Scafell Pike is the highest mountain in England at 978m high and is one of the mountains climbed on the Three Peaks Challenge walk. It’s a formidable mountain that needs respect, with no such thing as an easy route up the mountain to be had. All the walks and hikes are a challenge, and well worth the effort to reach the roof of England.
The Routes to the Top of Scafell Pike page has an interactive map that shows all the walking routes to the summit of Scafell Pike from Wasdale Head, Scafell Pike from Borrowdale and Scafell Pike from Langdale as well as hotels, campsites and pubs near Scafell Pike (add your Lake District business for free), and there’s a page for each walk that shows the route, parking postcode, a downloadable file for your GPS device as well as details on the weather for the mountain.
Check out the Frequently Asked Questions page for more Scafell Pike facts such as how long will it take to climb Scafell Pike, where can i start the walk from and other questions.
Main Walking Routes up Scafell Pike
|Route Name||Starting Point||Parking Post Code||Distance||Ascent||Walking Time|
|Scafell Pike from Wasdale or Wasdale Head||Wasdale or Wasdale Head||CA20 1EX (Wasdale Head)||4.2km*||900m*||3-4 hours**|
|Scafell Pike from Seathwaite, Borrowdale (Corridor Route)||Borrowdale||CA12 5XJ||15km (round trip)||1000m||6 hours+|
|Scafell Pike from Langdale||Langdale||LA22 9JY||9km||1130m||4 hours**|
|Scafell Pike from Hardknott (southern approach) Eskdale||Hardknott||CA19 1TG – for Boot – then continue up Hardkott Pass to GR NY211 011||17km||1000m||6 hours|
|Scafell Pike Corridor Route from Wasdale||Wasdale or Wasdale Head||CA20 1EX (Wasdale Head)||7.8km*||970m*||3-4 hours **|
*Distance/Ascent noted is for one way only.
**Time is for one way only, and variable. Very fit walkers can walk up and down in 3-4 hours(depending on the route)and will know their own timings and speed. If in doubt, assume the longest duration for your ascent and add the longest for your descent, depending on route. Add a good half hour or more for the summit stop as well.
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