Castle Crag

This is a short route with some interesting terrain to traverse, a single steep ascent and some amazing views of the North Western Fells of the Lake District and Derwent Water.

Circular  |   5.98km (3.71 miles)  |  Difficulty: Easy

Please note that the route given is a rough guide and should not be relied upon solely when planning a walk. Remember to plan ahead, get a proper map and ensure you have the right equipment.

The route is a popular amongst tourists so it can be be busy on the way to the summit but the paths are well maintained and easy to traverse in most conditions.

1: The route leaves the village of Rosthwaite along a bridleway to the West.  This is a clear path which first follows, then crosses the River Derwent on a small humpback bridge.

2: Once the route reaches the foot of the hill walkers have a choice.  Following the path leads around the foot of the hill on the right.  However, the route follows a path to the left which leaves the main path and heads uphill.  The advantage of following this other path is that it gets the ascent out of the way first.  This ascent may also be less busy than the alternative route.

3: Soon the path reaches the foot of a large pile of slate.  Walkers will need to ascend the zig-zag path in the slate to get to the top.  This is the most difficult part of the walk as the slate can be slippery in the wet and the path is narrow, which is difficult with many walkers travelling along it in both directions.

4: After following the slate path walkers will find themselves at the summit where they can see Derwent Water and the surrounding hills.  The route now backtracks down the slate pile and turns right at the foot, down to a small valley on the West side of the hill.

5: There is a path in this valley which the route follows downhill towards the River Derwent.  Along this path the route drops into the wooded area surrounding the hill.

6: At the bottom of the hill the route follows the path to the right.  Along this section walkers can follow several offshoots of the path as it works its way around the foot of Castle Crag.  All these paths will eventually meet back up and lead walkers back to point 2.  From here walkers should retrace the first section of the route in reverse to return to the village of Rosthwaite.

The parking at Rosthwaite often fills up quickly so walkers should arrive early to traverse this route.  This is a short route so could be set aside as a morning walk.  The biggest challenge along the route is finding the way past other walkers on the slate pile on top of the hill, but with a bit of patience the summit can be reached for some amazing views.

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