Wythop Valley

Route: Wythop Valley

Area: North Western Lake District 

Date of walk: 5th July 2017

Walkers: Andrew and Gilly 

Distance: 3.0 miles

Weather: Mostly sunny 

The unfrequented Wythop Valley is a wonderful place for anyone who likes to walk in solitude. It’s unlikely that you’ll see another walker, and the valley has completely escaped the attention of tourists. The reason for this is unclear for, as Wainwright puts it ‘Here is a charming and secluded natural sanctuary in a idyllic setting, a place of calm….every rod, pole and perch of it is delightful and unspoilt’

We parked in Wythop Mill by the post box (room for one car only) though as we discovered later it would be better to park in the layby next to the old school where there is space for 3-4 cars. After crossing Wythop Beck we walked along Seacross Lonning, a heavenly tunnel of hazel and elm through which there were occasional views across the valley

We then joined the road to Wythop Mill which we’d driven along earlier. Walking along the roads in these parts is no hardship as there’s hardly any traffic. On reaching tiny St Cuthbert’s Church we followed a private road which serves a few houses and farms and climbed gently uphill along the nursery slopes of Ling Fell

Near Highside Farm we joined our second lonning of the day – Green Lonning. This marked the start of the return to Wythop Mill. The path took us along the foot of Ling Fell, with extensive views of the surrounding countryside – at one point we could see Scotland across the Solway Firth and later on we caught a glimpse of Bassenthwaite Lake

The lonning brought us down to the road into Wythop Mill and from here it was a short stroll back to the start. A wonderful short walk, and highly recommended

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