Climbing in the Lake District
Wasdale Head, Ambleside, Central Lakes

Details for Climbing in the Lake District

Climbing in the Lake District has become one of the most popular of outdoor pursuits. These magnificent mountains and fells offer the perfect place to try out climbing skills and test climbers to the limit. The breathtaking views from the peaks are reward indeed at the end of a challenging climb.

Experience the thrill of the magnificent scenery in the breathtaking Lake District Mountains. The Lake District, condensed into an area less than forty miles across, contains the highest concentration in England not only of lakes but also of mountains and fells.

Of all these fells, Scafell Pike is king, laying claim to the title of the highest peak in England, at 3208 feet. Abundant crags of igneous rock, limestone and sandstone, slate and granite exert a magnetic pull on climbers eager to pit their wits against some of the toughest climbs in the country.

The earliest climbers were shepherds in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, but the poet Coleridge was also somewhat of a trailblazer, recording in his journals and letters the difficult routes he climbed at the turn of the 19th century.

With the arrival of railways came tourists: the first outsider to come to the Lake District to make an ascent purely for sport was one Lieutenant Wilson, who climbed Pillar Rock in 1848. The Pillar climb became a popular goal and in the next eighteen years twenty-eight people completed it in 1870 the first women began climbing in the area, clad in (and probably hindered by) the long dresses required to maintain ladies modesty.

Since the early days of the sport, the advent of new materials and equipment – grippy rubber-soled shoes rather than hobnailed boots, nylon ropes instead of hemp – has led to great advances in...

 

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