18th March 2012

Walking the Lakeland Passes - Walk 3 - Kirkstone Pass and Scandale Pass


Walk Overview
Time 08.15 to 15.15
Duration 7 hr
Distance 13 mile
Ascent 2900 ft
Walking with Jennifer
Ambleside - Kirkstone Pass - Kirk Stone - Hartsop Hall - Brothers Water - Hartsop Hall - Caiston Glen - Scandale Pass - Scandale - Ambleside
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Roadside, Miller Bridge, Ambleside

This offers an alternative to the overcharged car parks in Ambleside itself. The downsides are, spaces are limited, it's a little way out from the center of the town and you will need to get here early to get a space.


Route Map

Today's passes walk saw us walking from Ambleside to Brothers Water via Kirkstone Pass and then returning over Scandale Pass. This was one of the walks Jennifer wanted to join me on and given the road walk at the beginning, an early start was needed to beat as much of the traffic as we could.

Passing by Bridge House.

Just what you want to be told when you're setting out to walk all the way over the pass.

A view over Ambleside to the Coniston Fells.

A view down the pass to Windermere. Coniston Old Man can be seen on the right hand side of the picture.

The Kirkstone Pass Inn comes into view.


I'm not sure what stops the water flowing between the pipes, but it seems to be working.


Outside the Kirkstone Pass Inn 2012

and a few years ago.

A view back down the pass, taken from the car park opposite the Inn.

We left the road for the walk down the other side of the pass. Traffic was starting to build up (I know there isn't any in this picture but it was) and it seemed more sensible to walk down the path / track than to dodge cars from top to bottom.

This is the Kirk Stone, after which the pass is named.
The fell in the centre of the picture is Place Fell.


Almost down to valley level now and shortly after taking this picture we picked up a path which took us across to the road for the final bit of the pass.

And here you can see Kirkstone Pass on the left and Caiston Glen / Scandale Pass on the right of the picture. We're not heading back up yet though, we decided it would be a good idea to make our way to Brothers Water for something to eat.

Flat as a pancake !

Hartsop Hall. To get to Brothers Water we walked around the left side of the building, around the back and out of the picture on the right.

Brothers Water in front of a dark looking Brock Crags.

and again, from the track leading back to Hartsop Hall.

Time to start heading up hill again now.

Caiston Beck flowing through the Scotish sounding Caiston Glen.

Scandale Pass summit. Never mind the stile, there's plenty of gaps in the wall.

and from the other side of the wall, a view down to Scandale.

Once you reach Scandale Bottom there's still a fair bit to walk back to Ambleside but the going is easy and because this is such a lovely quiet spot, the distance doesn't seem to matter.
It looks like Jennifer isn't going to hang around for me.

A view back up Scandale Pass.
The path goes up the side of the wall and then curves across to the right to take you to the lowest point on the skyline.

and a longer distance view.

High Sweden Bridge.

This is the track through Rough Sides and it was just like a summers day walking through here this afternoon. Apart from the lack of leaves on the trees of course.

Wansfell Pike looked as clear as a bell as we were walking back into Ambleside.

Looking over the wall on the other side of the track to get see Nab Scar, Heron Pike and Great Rigg. The knobbly bits on the left hand side are the Langdales.

And was there a downside to the walk? Absolutely, , , , there were no bath buns left in the Apple Pie Bakery so we had to settle for a piece of flapjack instead.

David Hall -
Lake District Walks