VACATION & HOLIDAY GUIDE TO
THE FELLS, MOUNTAINS, LAKES
All parts of Cumbria offer great walking for people of all abilities. There are many good paths around some of the Lakes, the fells of the Pennines are famous for their walks and so are the Lake District hills. The Eden Valley , west coast, Cumbria north of the Lake District and the Pennines offer many less strenuous walks, and so of course does the country along Hadrians Wall (see Romans in Cumbria in the History Index for more) near the town of Brampton.
The Pennine Way is a long-distance path stretching from Edale in the Peak District National Park just south of the city of Manchester, north through the Yorkshire Dales National Park, over the North Pennines past Alston and onwards into Northumberland National Park before crossing into Scotland to end near the town of Kelso. I describe the Cumbrian section of this long walk. Do not be put off by the length of the Pennine Way because there are many other walks in the Pennines of varying length.
The Lake District also is famous for its fantastic scenery and the quality of the walks, scrambles and climbs. Sir Chris Bonnington and others have used the area for training in preparation for tackling Everest and other daunting mountains. The Lake District is well served with good paths that are regularly maintained . You will find some truly spectacular and beautiful views in this area. There are so many fells and peaks and walks that I describe only a selection here, but there is a huge number of readily available guide books on the subject.
Don't take safety for granted. Even during the hottest days of the year conditions on the tops of the fells can change rapidly and dramatically for the worse: strong winds, rain and fog can make the going dangerous for the inexperienced. It is vital that you treat the mountains with respect. The right equipment is essential: windproof and warm clothing (strictly no jeans), good walking boots, hat, gloves, first aid kit, torch and whistle, compass (take a GPS if you have one but always have a compass with you) and Ordnance Survey 1:50,000 Landranger maps.
The international distress signal is six flashes of your torch or six blows of the whistle. Failing that, shout six times, wait one minute then repeat, and keep on until help arrives.
The emergency services can be contacted by dialling 999, this call is free including from call boxes. Ask for Mountain Rescue, the Police, Ambulance service, Fire Brigade and Coast Guard can all be contacted on this number.
Incidentally all members of Mountain Rescue are unpaid volunteers, and the costs are met by public donation. Please remember this if you see a collection box in a pub or elsewhere.
Don't let all this put you off walking these wonderful fells. Common sense and an understanding of your own limitations and experience is all that's needed. With this knowledge you should have a great day out.
For weather reports on conditions on the tops of the mountains and fells, updated twice daily, dial 0, this service is provided by the Lake District National Park.
Lake District Search & Mountain Rescue Association (LDSAMRA)
Copyright © EDGE 2001