Lake District Walk
Wansfell Pike & Wansfell from Ambleside
Walk Route Description
Wansfell overlooks the town of Ambleside and for many years its ascent has proved popular with walkers. The first time I walked this fell the approach path was in a sorry state, very muddy and slippery and eroding fast. Since then significant improvements to the path have been made using rock and the former erosion has all but disappeared. Today Wansfell makes an excellent Lake District circular walk which provides some fine views of Lakeland scenery.
The walk starts in Ambleside (grid ref. NY375045) where parking can be a headache at busy times of the year. The walk starts near the Salutation Hotel in the centre and you have a choice of initial routes. You can either follow Stockghyll Lane uphill or alternatively follow the footpath that runs alongside the ghyll towards Stockghyll Force waterfall exiting onto the lane where the footpath ends. Whichever way you start you end up on Stockghyll Lane which sees very little traffic especially as you climb away from the houses. At grid ref. NY385045 take the signed footpath on your right that leads across fields towards Wansfell. The path is good and progress fast with improving views towards the Langdales and Fairfield in particular.
As the summit nears, the path passes through a rocky patch and soon leads to the highest point (482m.) at this end of the fell from where the views are mainly to the west. To reach the highest elevation on Wansfell ignore the main path dropping down to Troutbeck and head northeast alongside the ridge wall to the highest point (487m.) which is marked by a cairn. Despite the gain in height the view is less interesting although you can claim to have visited the real summit - a feat achieved by only a few of the walkers who sent out to ascend Wansfell.
To continue follow the developing path southeast. This path roughly follows a wall but then takes a shortcut to shadow another wall heading roughly SSW. After a short wall the path has developed enough and becomes easy to follow. The path leads into a walled lane - Nanny Lane (grid ref. NY403045), which is followed all the way down to a lane in Troutbeck. Turn right along the lane and walk through the village as far as the Post Office, the only source of refreshments on the walk but with limited opening times.
Just past the Post Office, the lane forks. Take the right hand lane (Robin Lane) which immediately starts to climb. The lane soon becomes a track and you swing in a large loop around the fellside to reach a junction of tracks (grid ref NY397023). Bear half left here following the signs for Ambleside dropping down to cross a stream before climbing once more to join the access road to High Skelghyll Farm.
Continue past the farm. The track soon enters delightful Skelghyll Wood. Continue following the main track ignoring tracks to the left as these drop down in to the valley too soon and leave you with an unpleasant walk along the main A591. The main track leaves the wood and you can see Ambleside ahead.
Please maintain social distancing - keep at least 2 metres away from other walkers.
|Ordnance Survey Explorer OL7||Sheet Map||1:25k||BUY|
|Anquet OS Explorer OL7||Digital Map||1:25k||BUY|
|Ordnance Survey Landranger 90||Sheet Map||1:50k||BUY|
|Anquet OS Landranger 90||Digital Map||1:50k||BUY|
It is recommended you take a map. The preferred scale is 1:25k.
GPS files - right click or option-click the button and choose "Save As..." to download this file.
Recommended Books & eBooks
Great Mountain Days in the Lake District
An inspirational guidebook to 50 challenging walks on the high fells of the Lake District. The graded circular routes, between 4 and 14 miles in length, cover classic Lakeland summits like Fairfield, Scafell Pike, Great Gable and Blencathra, to the lesser-known High Spy, King's How and Brund Fell.
Walking the Lake District Fells - Langdale
Part of the Walking the Lake District Fells series, this guidebook covers a wide range of routes to 25 Lakeland summits that can be climbed from the Great Langdale valley, Ambleside and Grasmere, with highlights including Scafell Pike, Bowfell, the Langdale Pikes and Helm Crag (the Lion and the Lamb). Includes suggestions for longer ridge routes.
The National Trails
This inspirational guidebook looks at each of the UK's 19 National Trails, with information that allows ease of comparison and contrast, inspiring you to find out more and to take up a long-distance challenge. Some Trails are short and easy, others much longer, many have strong themes - they may follow a coastline, or traverse ranges of hills.