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Cat Bells (Route 2) from Gutherscale

Lake District Walk

Nat Park - Lake District - Lake District North Western Fells

Wainwrights - Catbells

County/Area - Cumbria

Author - Lou Johnson

Length - 4.0 miles / 6.5 km    Ascent - 1500 feet / 455 metres

Time - 3 hours 30 minutes    Grade - easy/mod

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Walk Route Description

Photo from the walk - Cat Bells (Route 2)
Click image to visit gallery of 12 images.

This popular Lakeland Fell rises above the western shores of Derwentwater and is the basis for an excellent short and very scenic walk. Despite its modest stature, Catbells exhibits many of the characteristics of a many larger Lakeland hills, so often provides an excellent introduction to the pleasures (and pains!) of fell walking.

The start for this Lake District walk is the small car park (Grid ref. NY246211) on the dead-end road leading to Skelgill on the northwest flank of the fell. If this area is full then additional parking can be found along the verges near the road junction. From the car park walk back down the lane and take the path rising up the hill on your right. This path gains height quickly with no navigational problems. Quite soon the views begin to appear and you forget the uphill work as you enjoy the beautiful countryside in this part of Lakeland.

Reaching the first summit of Skelgill Bank you get your first clear view of Catbells' summit. Continue ahead on the main path. In some sections you climb over rock. There are no technical difficulties although you might need your hands on a couple of short sections. Reaching the summit you have a wonderful panorama. Ahead lies Maiden Moor. To your right is a superb view into the Newlands Valley with the fells surrounding Buttermere. Moving right you have Causey Pike and other fells of the Grassmoor group. Behind Keswick is Skiddaw with Derwentwater and Borrowdale completing the view.

To continue descend south. At the lowest point of the col (Grid ref NY244192) turn sharp left and follow the path descending towards Manesty. The descent offers fine views across Derwentwater. Continue on this path to reach a clear junction of paths with the woodland almost adjacent (Grid ref NY248186). Turn sharp left and continue along this balcony path eventually reaching the lane near the start of the walk. Turn left along the lane and left at the first junction. This will take you back to the small car park where you started.

Other walks nearby

Walk 1155 Causey Pikemoderate6.3 miles
Walk 1187 Robinson & Hindscarthmod/hard6.5 miles
Walk 1356 Walla Crag from Great Woodeasy/mod4.5 miles
Walk 3029 Derwentwater & Walla Crageasy/mod6.5 miles
Walk 3037 High Seat & Bleaberry Fell from Keswickmoderate9.0 miles
Walk 2321 Shores of Derwentwater from Keswick easy3.5 miles
Walk 1108 Ashness Bridge & Grange Fellmoderate9.0 miles
Walk 1120 Grisedale Pike & Crag Hill fro Braithwaitemod/hard8.5 miles
Walk 2038 Tower Ridge on Eel Crag returning via Sail & Barrowhard6.3 miles
Walk 1268 Cat Bells & High Spymoderate8.0 miles

Recommended Books & eBooks

Walking the Lake District Fells - Patterdale

Walking the Lake District Fells - PatterdalePart of the Walking the Lake District Fells series, this guidebook covers a wide range of routes to 35 Lakeland summits that can be climbed from Ambleside, Grasmere and Patterdale and the Thirlmere and Ullswater valleys, with highlights including Helvellyn and Fairfield. Suggestions for longer ridge routes are also included.
More information

Walking the Lake District Fells - Keswick

Walking the Lake District Fells - KeswickPart of the Walking the Lake District Fells series, this guidebook covers a wide range of routes to 30 Lakeland summits that can be climbed from Keswick, Whinlatter, Bassenthwaite, Caldbeck, Mungrisdale and Threlkeld, with highlights including Skiddaw and Blencathra. Includes suggestions for longer ridge routes.
More information

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