Birkdale

Lake District Walks with Children

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Birkdale

1st May 2022

Did you know that May is National Walking Month? To be honest, every month is a walking month here in the Lake District, but to celebrate the official National Walking Month, we thought we’d share a few of our favourite Lake District walks we’re enjoyed with our children.

From little hills to England’s highest mountain, there’s something for all ages and abilities. And we’re going to start very close to home, Brant Fell.

Brant Fell

Brant Fell is quite literally on the doorstep of Birkdale House, so it’s a relatively short stroll to the summit. It can be quite steep in places, but the reward on reaching the summit is well worth the effort, with views across the lake to Grizedale Forest, the Langdale Pikes and the Coniston range.

At the top you’ll see a rocky crag, only a few feet high, but another exciting adventure for the children. You’ll also come across a pair of heavy stone gateposts which were once part of a viewing platform. Sadly, it’s long since gone, but rest assured the inspiring views remain.

Orrest Head

Our next walk takes us to the summit of Orrest Head, the place where where author and fell-walker, Alfred Wainwright, first fell in love with the Lake District.

Writing in his autobiographical ‘Ex-Fellwanderer’, Wainwright said; “… quite suddenly, we emerged from the trees and were on a bare headland, and, as though a curtain had dramatically been torn aside, beheld a magnificent view…”.

Orrest Head is situated on the northern edge of Windermere, not far from the railway station and Windermere Tourist Information Centre. The path to the summit is tarmacked meaning it’s accessible for those with wheelchairs and prams. And the views across Lake Windermere and the Lake District fells beyond are simply breathtaking.

Gummers Howe

Gummers Howe is high on anyone’s list when it comes to Lake District walks with children. Located at the southern end of Lake Windermere, this walk will make your little ones feel like mini-mountaineers. There’s even a scramble to the summit should you decide to veer from the path.

The beginning of the walk is a gentle climb through fields and woodland before becoming a little steeper en-route to the summit.

And like the two walks we’ve already shared with you, the views from the top are amazing.

Tarn Hows

When you see Tarn Hows laid out before you, it’s hard to believe that it’s actually man-made. It looks as though it’s been part of the landscape for thousands of years.

This is one of the most popular spots in the Lake District and a fabulous place for those with young families. The circular path is just under two miles and is ideal for pushchair and wheelchair users. Small beaches add to the excitement, the perfect spot for a picnic, or simply stop at one of many benches are take in the views.

Stickle Tarn

Stickle Tarn sits below the steep eastern face of Harrison Stickle, with the huge crag of Pavey Ark looming above – this is dramatic Lake District at its very best.

The path to the tarn is steep, running alongside Stickle Ghyll, and towards the top the terrain becomes a little more challenging, with a couple of rocky scrambles, but nothing technical. Pack up a picnic and a picnic rug and spread out on the shore of Stickle Tarn. If you’re feeling really brave, why not go for a little paddle?

Scafell Pike

We’ll finish with a trip to the top of England’s highest mountain, Scafell Pike. This is not a walk for really little legs.

There are a number of routes to the summit, but if you take the direct, shortest route from Wasdale Head, the trickiest part of the walk will be crossing the river shortly after setting off, where big boulders act as large stepping stones.

The path to the top is pretty obvious, although it becomes more of a boulder scramble as you approach the summit. This can be tricky to navigate, especially in cloudy conditions, so we would advise that you are accompanied by someone with experience of the Lakeland fells, and in particular, Scafell Pike.

But the sense of achievement on reaching the summit is immense. You’re literally on top of the world – well England anyway!

These are just a few of our favourite Lake District walks with the children and hopefully there’s something for everyone in this list – from the complete novice to the more adventurous, from little legs to experienced hikers.

Whatever your level of expertise, please remember to pack appropriate clothing and equipment. Walking boots, waterproofs, layers of warm clothing, a rucksack, a first aid kit, snacks, a mobile phone in case of emergencies and, of course, a map and compass. And a camera – make sure you have memories of your day in the fells.

For more information on what clothing and equipment to take with you, click here.

Don’t forget, we also offer a private guided estate walk – for more information, click here.