Ennerdale

Ennerdale

Route: Ennerdale

Area: Western Lake District

Date of walk: 27th July 2018

Walkers: Andrew

Distance: 9.0 miles

Ascent: 600 feet

Weather: Cloudy with a few sunny spells, exceptionally warm

The weather forecast was for yet another hot day, potentially the hottest of the year, and so a fell walk was out of the question for golden retrievers and would probably be unpleasant for humans too. My thoughts turned to Ennerdale Water, the most westerly of the lakes and the most remote – there would be plenty of water for Bonnie and very few tourists around at what is the height of the season. The Ennerdale landscape is gradually being rewilded by the Wild Ennerdale Partnership – consisting of the National Trust, the Forestry Commission, Natural England and United Utilities – with the aim of shaping the landscape in a sympathetic manner in keeping with its remote location. To read more about this worthwhile endeavour click here

I parked in the Forestry Commission car park below Bowness Knott and set off along the wide track beside the shore of Ennerdale Water. Beyond the head of the lake the track continues past High Gillerthwaite, with ever improving views of Pillar ahead. Eventually I reached Middle Bridge, signalling the start of the return leg. Beyond the bridge there’s a choice to be made – a wide track above the River Liza or a narrow path beside it. My plan was to follow the path in order to remain closer to the water, but it’s easily missed and I had to retrace my steps to find it

Once located (immediately after the bridge) the path weaved its way in and out of woodland, with the River Liza on the right being a constant companion – much to the delight of Bonnie, who swam along most of this section of the walk. Just before the head of the lake I joined the wide track which crosses Char Dub via a concrete bridge, and from here I retraced my steps back to the start

During the course of 9 miles I saw very few other walkers, and along the return section beside the river I saw none, making this an ideal walk for anyone who wants to get away from the crowds

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