The lake District

One of the best places to climb in the UK,  with the usual caveat weather permitting, the Lake District has the highest concentration of accessible, high quality crags anywhere in the UK. Many people would argue, with good cause, that rock climbing started in the Lake District and it seems fitting that though there are other areas with superb climbing this is the best.

 

The Climbing

A huge array of routes with a variety of styles. From Diff to E10 there is something for everyone. The rock is predominantly a Volcanic Rhyolite but with enough variation in its formation to keep everyone happy.

Mainly multi pitch routes. With modern 60m ropes it  is possible to string pitches together but often at the risk of reducing good communication as they can wander about quite a bit. Historically most of the routes were climbed until a suitable stance was found and regardless of pitch length the stance was used.  It is feasible to climb  classic routes such as ‘Eliminate A’ in three of four pitches as opposed to the original six. But where is the fun in that?

Protection

It varies, after all that is the nature of Trad Climbing, on some routes it is excellent and on other routes it is not. Most mid – grade climbers will find the protection adequate if a route is bold it is generally indicated by either the grade or specifically in the guidebook text. It really is ‘horses for courses’ Don’t expect a nice bombproof placement ever three or four feet, it just isn’t going to happen.

 

Places to stay

There is a range of accommodation to suit all budgets. B&B’s, Camp-sites, Hotels, Private Hostels and Youth Hostels (although quite a few have been sold off in recent years) If you can’t find a place to stay you are not trying hard enough. In the Summer months everywhere gets busy, you will generally need to pre – book.

Places to Eat

You would think that alongside some of countries most spectacular scenery there would be a choice of equally spectacular places to eat. Sadly that is not the case, this is the UK after all so expect average and you will not be disappointed.

Most of the pubs serve pub – grub and it is generally very good, for what it is. Bowness ; otherwise known as Manchester by Windermere has a wide range of restaurants as does Ambleside and Keswick. The Lakes is also home to several Michelin star establishments, that are definitely not average, with spectacular prices to match the spectacular food.

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