Duddon Valley

Duddon Valley

Route: Duddon Valley

Area: Southern Lake District

Date of walk: 4th July 2018

Walkers: Andrew and Gilly

Distance: 7.0 miles

Ascent: 1,000 feet

Weather: Sunny, cloudless and very hot

On yet another hot and sunny day we set off from the North Lakes to the Duddon Valley. The valley is also known as Dunnerdale and stretches 10 miles from fell to sea. It was one of Wordsworth’s favourite places in the Lake District and he dedicated a series of 35 sonnets to the river.

Even though the Duddon Valley is only about 15 miles away as the crow flies, it took us over 1.5 hours to drive there thanks to the high fells between the two, and numerous single track roads in the valley. We eventually arrived at the start of today’s walk – the Forestry Commission car park by Hinning House Close. We walked along the road for a short distance, leaving it to cross over Birks Bridge, which is famous for the deep crystal clear rock pools below it

We followed a path through Dunnerdale Forest, where non-native trees are being felled and gradually replaced with native species. After emerging from the woodland we walked across open countryside, descending to High Wallowbarrow and then to the pretty village of Seathwaite

The return leg along the other side of the valley was an easy affair across beautiful countryside. We arrived back at the valley road and followed this for about 1 mile to the end of the walk. In 3 hours or so we’d only seen a small handful of other walkers – one of the benefits of the inaccessibility of this place

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