Two landslips have occurred on the Cumbria Way as it passes through Dentonside Woods east of Caldbeck (approx. locations NY351 403 & NY355 404). Cumbria County Council has issued a closure notice because they are concerned that further slips may occur. However as at July 28th 2016 the landslip sections of the bridleway could be walked with care.
The closure notice/ plan suggests using the bridleway leading to Parkhead Farm to the north and then to head north-east to rejoin the Cumbria Way at the north end of Dentonside Woods. However there is little evidence on the ground of the bridleway leading to Parkhead Farm. If you wish to avoid the landslips it is more straightforward to take the footpath starting adjacent to the waste water treatment plant and walk through Parson’s Park to reach Parkhead Farm. A map is highly recommended if using this alternative route.
The construction of a new bridge, to replace the bridge which was destroyed in the floods of late 2015, was completed in December 2017. Therefore the section of the Cumbria Way to the east of the River Caldew between Sebergham and Bell Bridge can now be walked.
This popular 70-mile walk, usually walked in five stages 11 to 15 miles long, crosses the English Lake District between Ulverston and Carlisle. Most people choose to walk the route from south to north, starting at the distinctive sculpture in the Gill in Ulverston (Grid Reference SD 284 785) and ending at the Carlisle Tourist Information Centre (NY 401 560), where there is a book to sign. The route was devised in the 1970s by local members of the Ramblers, and it is the Ramblers who are recognised by the Lake District National Park, Cumbria County Council, and Ordnance Survey as the organisation responsible for defining its route. Ramblers volunteers periodically inspect the route with regard to its ease of use.
It is important to realise that the route is not, and probably never will be, waymarked to the extent that it can be walked without a map and/or guidebook. Indeed, it is only in the last few years that the Lake District National Park has permitted waymarking, and we have concentrated our efforts on waymarking where the choice of path is not clear cut.
For information about the route, and guidance on choice of maps, guidebooks, and accommodation, we recommend the web site of the Long Distance Walkers Association.
The purpose of this page is to advise of temporary closures and diversions, and of permanent changes to the route which may not yet be on maps or in guidebooks. It also suggests alternative routes and minor detours to visit nearby points of interest along the way. The information is presented south to north.
The narrow streets of Ulverston can make it difficult to find the sculpture at the Gill that marks the start of the Cumbria Way, so downloading a street map could prove helpful.
From the bus station, go towards the centre of town, crossing the A590 main road to find the tourist information office on your right.
Continue along New Market Street, left along Market Street, and then right into King Street. Within a 100 yards turn left into Upper Brook Street, by the Chippy Bank cafe, which will take you through to The Gill.
From the railway station, follow Princes Street down to the traffic lights. Next, follow Queen Street straight ahead to the cobbled Market Place and continue into King Street to then turn left at the Chippy Bank cafe to follow Upper Brook Street to The Gill.
Part way up the Gill there is a choice of route where a stone bridge crosses the stream. The route across the bridge goes up the hill to a narrow squeeze stile in the stone wall, then across fields and through a working farmyard at Old Hall Farm. If there are cattle in the yard, the farmer does offer an alternative route.
Alternatively, do not cross the bridge but continue up The Gill to reach Old Hall Road and then walk up to Old Hall Farm, avoiding the farmyard.
Approaching Coniston from the south you reach the public road connecting the village to the ferry jetty. Rather than turning left towards the village you might like to turn right and walk down to the lake shore, where there are a cafe and toilets. From here you can follow the lake shore along a bridleway created in 2010 and then head north west to join the public road at grid reference SD 309 975. Walk west towards Coniston, rejoining the Cumbria Way on the outskirts of the village at SD 305 976.
There are toilets and a small exhibition at the south end of the National Trust car
The Cumbria Way follows the track constructed by the National Trust on the west side of Tarn Hows If you are happy to extend your walking day, you might like to walk around the east side to enjoy a different view. Rejoin the Cumbria Way at NY 330 004.
The original route of the Cumbria Way crossed the River Brathay via the public road bridge. For some time now the Cumbria Way has been re-routed to cross the river further upstream where a rather striking footbridge was constructed in 2006 (NY 342 032).
If you want to visit the pub or cafe in at Skelwith Bridge, take the original route to the public road. Otherwise, as you drop down into the valley of the Brathay, take the waymarked left fork (NY 342 032) to walk upstream and cross the river via the footbridge. Once across the river, a short detour downstream provides a good view of the waterfall.
The Cumbria Way to Elterwater now follows the bridleway constructed alongside the river.
If you have the time, there is a tapestry in the village church (NY 302 055), which depicts the history of Langdale from the Ice Age to the present day.
New Dungeon Ghyll
On reaching the public road turn left and then right into the car park. Walk through the car park past the toilets and then turn left onto the bridleway going to the Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel. There is a partly rocky climb here which affords a good view of Langdale. However, if you are looking for an easier, cross-field route then, when you first enter the car park, go through the field gate immediately on your left and follow the public footpath (signposted) to the Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel.
The footpath on the west side of the beck is marginally easier underfoot than that on the east side, but do remember to cross back over the beck before it joins Greenup Gill.
North of Rosthwaite there is the opportunity to climb Castle Crag, at 290m the lowest of the Wainrights, which affords great views over Derwent Water.
Leave the Cumbria Way at NY 251 155, take the path rising up across the field with Castle Crag ahead. After descending, take the path on the west side of Castle Crag to rejoin the Cumbria Way at NY250 165.
The Cumbria Way ends at the Tourist Information Centre in Carlisle. There is not at present a marker for photo opportunities, but you can sign the book in the information centre.
The approach to Carlisle centre is along the cycleway following the River Caldew. There are waymarkers, but they are located above eye level on lampposts and street signs. At the end of the cycleway, turn left and then right to walk alongside the dual carriageway. Carlisle Castle is on your left and Tullie House Museum ahead. Turn down Castle Street past Carlisle Cathedral to reach the information centre.
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Wednesday 21 February 2018Starting at 09:30A moderate 7 mile / 11.3 km walk
Wednesday 21 February 2018Starting at 10:30A leisurely 4 mile / 6.4 km walk
Wednesday 21 February 2018Starting at 09:15A moderate 8 mile / 12.9 km walk
Wednesday 21 February 2018Starting at 08:30A technical 12 mile / 19.3 km walk
Wednesday 21 February 2018Starting at 09:00A strenuous 9 mile / 14.5 km walk
Wednesday 21 February 2018Starting at 09:30A moderate 5 mile / 8 km walk
Wednesday 21 February 2018Meeting at 09:30, Starting at 10:30A moderate 6 mile / 9.7 km walk
Thursday 22 February 2018Starting at 10:00A leisurely 6 mile / 9.7 km walk
Thursday 22 February 2018Meeting at 08:30, Starting at 09:00A strenuous 11 mile / 17.7 km walk
Saturday 24 February 2018Starting at 09:00A strenuous 7 mile / 11.3 km walk
Saturday 24 February 2018Meeting at 08:30, Starting at 09:30A moderate 10 mile / 16.1 km walk
Sunday 25 February 2018Starting at 10:00A moderate 6 mile / 9.7 km walk