14th February 2010

A short walk from Thirlmere Dam


Walk Overview
Time 10.20 to 12.20
Duration 2 hr
Distance 4.1 mile
Ascent 1100 ft
Walking with On my own
Thirlmere Dam Triangle - Woodland Path to Raven Crag - Forest Track to Shoulthwaite Gill - Forest Track to Thirlmere Road - Smaithwaite - Bridge end Farm - Thirlmere Dam
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Parking spaces, Thirlmere Dam

I think I'm correct in saying this is the preferred parking spot for peak baggers who are intent on a quick there and back walk up Raven Crag. And while this is indeed the closest parking spot to Raven Crag, there actually considerably more routes to be had from here. To name a few, you could undertake a complete circuit of Thirlmere, head north to St John's in the Vale and High Rigg or even have a short walk onto Great How.

In or around August 2011 a pay and display machine was installed in this car park.

However, , , , if you continue a short way down the road towards the A591 you can park for free in a lay-by. The free parking spot is indicated by the higher of the two red arrows.

Route Map

It wasn't the best of conditions today, so I just had a short walk out from the car park near Thirlmere Dam. The walk might have been short, but there was still plenty to see along this great little route.

Almost from the outset the route up to Raven Crag follows path through woodland like this.

The view up to Raven Crag.

The view up to Raven Crag.

It was actually much darker than this in real life. The flash seems to have done it's job so I can't complain.

It had snowed almost all the way up through the woods to Raven Crag summit, but now that I was out in the open, I could see just how much was falling.

Looking down to Thirlmere from Raven Crag.

Still at the summit and now looking around towards the St John's in the Vale direction.


A couple of second de-tour took me to Shoulthwaite Gill and the ruined weir. It was drizzling steadily now, but it was more annoying than anything else. Too wet to be dry, and too dry to be wet.

I bet this thing didn't get stuck in the snow drifts.


Smaithwaite; all boarded up, but at least it was painted nicely.

This was the reason for the slightly longer route back to the car.

But for the wooden bridges at each end, the bridge would be stranded in the middle of the beck. I'm assuming the beck was much narrower when the bridge was originally built. Perhaps the beck is wider as a result of Thirlmere dam being built.

Reflections in Thirlmere.



David Hall -
Lake District Walks