Wasdale Head


Route: Wasdale

Area: Southern Lake District

Date of walk: 14th December 2018

Walkers: Andrew and Gilly

Distance: 4.7 miles

Ascent: 300 feet

Weather: Sunny, with a bitterly cold wind where exposed

Having been blown over by gale force winds on the fells yesterday, and with more of the same forecast for today, we decided on a low level walk and headed south to Wasdale. We parked in the free National Trust car park at Cinderdale Bridge, just beyond Nether Wasdale. We crossed the bridge over the River Irt, and then joined the track leading to Easthwaite, with the Wasdale Screes ahead of us. After passing through the farm we headed towards the foot of Wast Water, arriving at a junction where a public footpath to Lund Bridge is clearly marked on the OS maps. However, as on the previous occasion here, there was a sign on the gate ‘PRIVATE – no public right of way’. The gate was open and there were no livestock in the field so we decided to follow the path to the bridge. Last time I was here it was lambing season and I took a slightly longer alternative path

We followed the path around Low Wood and arrived at the foot of Wastwater. One of the best views in the country was revealed here in all its glory – the view along the lake to Wasdale Head and some of lakeland’s finest mountains. It was a magnificent sight. We followed the path around the foot of the lake, gawping at the panorama all the while. After passing by Wasdale Hall we arrived at the lakeshore road and with reluctance turned our backs on the view to start the return journey

We left the road after a short distance to join a path through Ashness How, a small area of uncultivated moorland, where the track is a muddy and deeply rutted quagmire. The views ahead of us were nothing in comparison to those behind us, and we kept looking back to admire them

Beyond Ashness How we turned off at Scale Bridge and followed a very pleasant path back to the start. It had been a superb walk, and we felt privileged to have seen the classic view of Wasdale Head in such good conditions

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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