Tarn Hows

Tarn Hows

Route: Tarn Hows

Area: Southern Lake District

Date of walk: 17th October 2019

Walkers: Andrew

Distance: 5.0 miles

Ascent: 900 feet

Weather: Mostly sunny

Tarn Hows is a well known beauty spot, perhaps too well known as it can be a little busy at times. The tarn is partly artificial, having been formed in the 19th century by merging three small tarns. When the Tarns and its setting came up for sale in 1929, they were bought by Beatrix Potter who sold the half containing Tarn Hows to the National Trust, and bequeathed the rest of the estate to the Trust in her will

I was last here 2 years ago to the day, and well recall the glorious autumn colours that were on display on that occasion

I had planned a different route today, and parked in the National Trust car park at Glen Mary bridge, following the steepish path up beside Tom Gill. There are some spectacular waterfalls along the way, and these were on good form after many rainy days. After a few minutes I arrived at the lakeshore path, which is a very easy one and is accessible to wheelchairs and mobility scooters. Following the tarn in an anti-clockwise direction (I always seem to walk round lakes this way for some reason), I took an alternative higher path as the views from it are better

On reaching Rose Castle I made a there and back diversion, climbing higher for improved views. Instead of following the obvious circuit, as I’ve done often before, I decided to climb up to Torver Intake. I left the main path to enjoy the views towards the Langdale Pikes, and continued to take a pathless course across the intake which eventually brought me back down to Tarn Hows. For anyone following this route is may be better to stick to the main path, which joins the Cumbria Way higher up (or alternatively to ignore the diversion altogether and carry on around the tarn). My exploratory pathless course was pleasant enough but didn’t improve on the more obvious routes   

Having arrived back at Tarn Hows I completed the circuit, and then descended back to Glen Mary via an alternative route, with lovely views along the way

Click on the icon below for the route map (subscribers to OS Maps can view detailed maps of the route, visualise it in aerial 3D, and download the GPX file. Non-subscribers will see a base map)

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