Bowness Knott - Ennerdale Bridge - Cold Fell - Scalderskew - Blengdale - Hollow Moor - Buckbarrow - Netherbeck - either via Haycock and Lingmell OR via Wasdale Head and Black Sail Pass

Distance 25 miles 28 miles
Ascent 1500 metres 1500 metres
Altitude (max/min) 700 metres / 60 metres 550 metres / 60 metres

A longer and more varied route in to the lesser known parts of the Western Lake District, well off the beaten track.

From Bowness Knott head back up the road (north) to Whins Farm, turn left here up the unsuitable road (it cuts the corner to Croasdale off), then left again and on to Ennerdale Bridge. Bear left over the bridge up the hill then left again on to the Cold Fell road towards Calder Bridge. [WARNING - For your own safety you must be off this road whilst the Wacky Races are on, at it's  worst between 6 - 8 am and 3:30 - 6pm]. You carry on south along this road for approx. 4 miles, until you reach the second cattle grid. The road on your right goes down to Wilton, the bridleway on your left will take you across the moors to Wasdale. Head down the track across the River Calder and up on and along Town Bank, past the old settlements. Once you start descending keep a look out for the fork in the track, you need to bear right for Scalderskew Wood (if you don't you will end up at the top of Iron Crag, good views but it's a dead end). Cross Worm Gill via the ford or stepping stone, whichever is the easier, and in to Scalderskew Wood heading south for Scalderskew, the track then swings eastwards across Scalderskew Beck, where you bear left (continue going east) towards Blengdale Forest. Cross the River Bleng then enter the forest heading in a south easterly direction for Hollow Moor. At Hollow Moor you reach a T junction, right for Gosforth, left for Buckbarrow and Wasdale. Turn right, once you reach Kid Beck you will start descending until you meet the Wasdale road. Turn left at the road and head towards Wast Water and on towards Wasdale Head.

The route you choose back from Wasdale to Bowness Knott is up to you, you have 2 options:

1 Netherbeck - Haycock - Lingmell - Bowness Knott
A hard route, off the beaten track with excellent views.

Whilst heading past Middle Fell heading towards Wasdale Head, you will reach a highpoint on the road where you will be looking down in to the head of the valley, with Yewbarrow, Gable and the Scafells in front of you, he views from here are at there best from this high point. A hundred metres or so down the descent you will see a bridleway sign (it is well camouflaged) on your left, it doesn't look promising but this is where you are going. If you reach Netherbeck Bridge then you have missed it. The bridleway rises gently following the course of Netherbeck until you reach Little Lad Crag, then it kicks. This section is tough but it is the last uphill section of the day, and takes you on to the ridge between Haycock and Scoat Fell. From here the views in to Wasdale aren't great but the views from the ridge down to Tewit How and Lingmell in to Ennerdale are as good as you will get, enjoy. Descend from the pass to Tewit How, stop and take in the scenery, have a look to your right now that you can, Pillar, Steeple, Mirkiln Cove. At Tewit How you will need to consult your map as the route of descent isn't clear on the ground, all this area is a SSSI so you must stick to the bridleway. Looking from Tewit How along Deep Gill you will see a stream that you have to intercept, if you look carefully you will see there is a big tree in it, this is approximately the right place, aim for this and you won't go far wrong. Once you reach the tree its then a simple matter of heading along the contour for Lingmell, then down the steep front to Woundell Beck. From here turn left heading toward the lake then, right to the Irish Bridge across the River Liza. You used to be able to have a refreshing swim here until the LDNPA allowed the Forestry Commission to fill the river in, now the only place for a dip is in the lake, in our drinking water. It's now a simple matter of heading west back to Bowness Knott.

2 Wasdale Head - Black Sail Pass - Bowness Knott
This is an easier route and with poorer views.

Continue down the road to Wasdale Head. Head past the Wasdale Inn, staying on this side of Mosedale Beck follow the bridleway up along the western side of Kirk Fell and up Gatherstone Beck to the top of Black Sail Pass. Enjoy the views at the top of the pass looking in to both Mosedale and Ennerdale, you won't have much time to appreciate the scenery on the descent towards the Black Sail Youth Hostel, the route is pretty much laid out in front of you from up here. Descend carefully to the River Liza, turn left to the Youth Hostel, then follow the forest track west back to Ennerdale Water and Bowness Knot.

Ennerdale Routes