Nanny Lane, Troutbeck

Wansfell Pike

Route: Wansfell Pike

Area: Far Eastern Lake District

Date of walk: 1st May 2021

Walkers: Andrew and Gilly

Distance: 7.7 miles

Ascent: 1,900 feet

Weather: Mixed cloud and sun

Today’s walk was a classic circuit which we’ve followed on several occasions before, although not for 4 years or so. There is interest and beauty almost every step of the way. We parked in the main car park in Ambleside and headed towards the centre of town. At a sign pointing ‘To the Waterfalls’ we did as instructed and followed a path along the right bank of Stock Ghyll, leaving the lane at another sign to follow a path which gives good views of the waterfalls. There had been little or no rain for many days, and in consequence the falls were not on top form

We left the woods via a wooden gate next to a revolving metal one and started the climb up to Wansfell Pike. The way is quite steep but has been made much easier in recent years thanks to the provision of a well made and unobtrusive rocky staircase. We were soon at the top of Wansfell Pike enjoying superb views back to Ambleside and across to Windermere. Wansfell Pike is not in fact the summit of Wansfell, as the highest point of the fell lies a short distance away to the north east. As the difference is only 15 feet or so, and since the views from the true summit are inferior, we were content with having climbed the Pike and started the gentle descent towards Troutbeck

We soon reached Nanny Lane, an old drovers’ road set between dry stone walls. This was a beautiful section of the walk with good views in various directions. The lane took us down into the village of Troutbeck, where we had a pot of tea and a bacon butty at the Old Post Office – a perfect half time interval. Suitably refuelled we set off on the homeward leg, turning right immediately after the cafe to join another walled track known as Robin Lane. We followed this around the lower flanks of Wansfell, through Skelghyll Wood and back into Ambleside to complete a superb circuit

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