1st December 2012

Ambleside, Troutbeck and Wansfell Pike


Walk Overview
Time 10.00 to 15.00
Duration 5 hr
Distance 8.2 mile
Ascent 2000 ft
Walking with Jennifer
Miller Bridge - Ambleside -Skelghyll Wood - High Skelghyll - Robin Lane - Troutbeck - Nanny Lane - The Hundreds - Baystones - Wansfell Pike - Ambleside - Miller Bridge
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

Jennifer crossing Miller Bridge.
The slippery path along here set the scene for most of today's walk. Last night it froze, then it rained for a while and then the frost returned. I think I said something like "whatever you do don't let go of the wall otherwise you'll end up in a heap on the ground".

A view across to Heron Pike, Great Rigg, Fairfield, Low Pike and Red Screes.
"Spot the Sheep"
"That's easy, it's there at the bottom of the picture"
"I wasn't asking you to find it, I'm telling you it's name"

Despite the amount of ice on the ground it wasn't as cold as it may seem. I took the jacket off here and it didn't go back on until we were almost at Wansfell Pike.
Over in the distance are the Coniston fells. From here, Wetherlam appears to be much higher than the rest, which of course it isn't, , , , it's all to do with perspective and stuff like that. The nick in the skyline on the right is Wrynose Pass. I wouldn't fancy driving over there today.

Looking a little bit to the right you can see Cold Pike, Pike O'Blisco, Crinkle Crags, Lingmoor Fell and Bow Fell.

Walking through Skelghyll Woods in the shade.

Now in the sunshine.

Out of the woods and looking back to see Windermere.

Approaching High Skelghyll Farm.

and now looking back to High Skelghyll Fell Farm.

We're almost in Troutbeck now and over on the skyline is the start of the Yoke to Thornthwaite Crag ridge.

This is a strange looking garden hedge. I wonder if it used to spell something and it's been allowed to grow back into its natural shape. Or perhaps the guy that cuts the hedge has lost his glasses.

A view across to Sour Howes.



"Is my shadow in the way"
"No more than mine and there's now't I can do about that"

Rather than head straight to Wansfell Pike, we decided to add a little more distance onto the walk by continuing to the end of Nanny Lane (this is it) and then walking up to the Baystones end of the ridge.

Thornthwaite Crag, Froswick, Ill Bell and Yoke, seen from t'other side of the stile.

Heading for Baystones.

Red Screes behind the cairn on Baystones.
The cairn looks much bigger in this picture than is actually is.

and now looking around to Thornthwaite Crag, Froswick, Ill Bell and Yoke.

The ground may have been frozen but I still didn't fancy walking right across this bit. Far too much rain has fallen in recent months for me to chance going through a weak spot in the ice.

A long distance view over Ambleside and Rydal to the fells beyond. In among all that lot are the Crinkle Crag / Bow Fell ridge, the Langdales, Loughrigg Fell and the Nab Scar arm of the Fairfield Horseshoe.


Windermere, taken from Wansfell Pike.

This end of the ridge may be slightly Lower than the Baystones end, but I reckon this is the better of the two. It feels more like you're at the top of somewhere and the views are much better. That's probably why Wansfell Pike is usually very busy and Baystones is usually deserted.


Turning around the view shows most of the Fairfield Horseshoe, Red Screes and Stony Cove Pike.
The fell right next to the top of the rusty fence post is Low Pike. Directly above it is Great Rigg.

A close up of Red Screes, Kirkstone Pass and Stony Cove Pike (part of it anyway).

Looking down to Ambleside.

Just after taking this picture I heard a thud, then a scream and when I looked round there was Jennifer laying on the ground. There was no damage other than a sore arm for a few hours. You can guess the rest for yourselves, but two sentences from the conversation were:-
"It can't broken or you wouldn't be able to wave it about like that"
"If you had followed me you wouldn't have slipped because I didn't stand on the ice"

A final look up to Red Screes and time to hit the shops in Ambleside.

David Hall -
Lake District Walks