Grange & Watendlath from Rosthwaite

Combining the delights of Borrowdale with the rural charm of Watendlath, this Lake District walk offers some wonderful views and relatively easy walking. Route finding is generally easy although there is a steady ascent from Lodore up to Watendlath.

Technical sheet
No. 293084
A Borrowdale walk posted on 04/07/16 by Walking Britain. Update : 18/09/16
Calculated time Calculated time: 4h25[?]
Distance Distance : 7.58mi
Vertical gain Vertical gain : 1056ft
Vertical drop Vertical drop : 1066ft
Highest point Highest point : 1076ft
Lowest point Lowest point : 249ft
Average Difficulty : Average
Back to starting point Back to starting point : Yes
Walking Walking
Area Area : Lake District
Location Location : Borrowdale
Starting point Starting point : N 54.523441° / W 3.148309°
Download : -


(D)The start is the small car park in Rosthwaite (grid ref. NY257148), which can fill early in good weather. After parking exit the car park and turn right following the Cumbria Way down the lane, bearing right at the first junction to reach the River Derwent, which initially runs parallel to the route on your left. Cross the River at the first bridge (grid ref. NY252150) and continue downstream on the path running parallel to the river on your right.

(1)Stay alongside the river ignoring a path going left and enter pleasant woodland on with Castle Crag rising to your left. The path briefly leaves the river as it meanders north to rejoin the Derwent. The path develops into a track and continues north to reach a junction of tracks (grid ref. NY249170). Bear left here staying on the Cumbria Way passing Hollows Farm to reach another junction (grid ref. NY248175).

(2)Bear right here keeping on the Cumbria Way and continue to a tarmac lane. Bear left along the lane before turning right to continue along a track signed Cumbria Way. After 500 metres, bear right onto a path leading towards Lodore. This section of the route provides some good views of Derwentwater before crossing the River Derwent and exiting on the main Borrowdale Road.

(3)Turn left along the road for 100 metres and take the "Entrance to Waterfalls" on your right. At the time of writing there was a small charge to entre these private grounds. There are many paths which can be confusing so a good sense of direction is required. Keep climbing through the woods. Turn left away from the Lodore Falls and then right along the base of a crag. Ignore paths on your left and keep with the stream on your right. Cross a ladder stile over a wall, turn right and cross the footbridge. Turn left and follow the clear path to Watendlath.

(4)Do not cross the packhorse bridge. Instead keep ahead to the shores of Watendlath Tarn. Bear right away from the Tarn and start to climb to Puddingstone Bank. The retrospective views of Watendlath provide an excuse for a brief stop. Continue up to the summit of the path and begin the descent down to Rosthwaite. The path is a little rough in places and continues to a junction (grid ref. NY263155) where you bear left. At the next junction bear right and you are soon back in Rosthwaite.(A)

Waypoints :
D/A : mi 0 - alt. 302ft - Start: Rosthwaite car park
1 : mi 0.48 - alt. 289ft - Cross river and continue downstream
2 : mi 2.3 - alt. 364ft - Bear right on Cumbria Way
3 : mi 3.73 - alt. 302ft - Turn left along road
4 : mi 6.01 - alt. 863ft - Continue ahead to Watendlath Tarn
D/A : mi 7.58 - alt. 299ft - Finish: Rosthwaite car park

Useful Information

Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.

Opinions and comments


Global average : 4.56/5
Number of opinions : 3
Description quality : 4.33/5
Routemap quality : 4.33/5
Walk interest : 5/5

on Tue 29 Dec 2020 17:18:40 CET

Global average : 4.67 / 5

Date of walk : 29/12/20
Description quality : Good
Routemap quality : Very good
Walk interest : Very good

I did a variation on this walk starting from Grange and walking in the opposite direction.
From Grange I headed on the good path to the west of Castle Crag and made the ascent on a well made path through he scree, exploring an old quarry just below the top,
I descended to the river and followed the path to Rosthwaite but kept to to opposite side, crossing on stepping stones at the ford, rather than the new bridge. (a little more fun than taking the bridge)
Then from Rosthwaite over to Watendlath. I did not head down past the Lodore Falls as I had been told that the hotel had stopped people visiting (since been told this was incorrect) so descended from the top of Shepherd's Crag to High Lodore Farm and then around across the bridge (flooded fields, just managed to get there without wet feet) and back to the Cumbria way and Grange

I can recommend this walk, whichever way you do it and whatever variations you might make, but please do take in Castle Crag; the views are excellent. Or if following the path as described by Walking Britain around the east side of Castle Crag take the short detour up to Dalton Millican's Cave.
This website will give you good directions to find it.

on Wed 15 Aug 2018 18:32:28 CEST

Global average : 4.33 / 5

Date of walk : 15/08/18
Description quality : Good
Routemap quality : Good
Walk interest : Very good

Great walk on sunny day

on Mon 09 Jul 2018 09:10:19 CEST

Global average : 4.67 / 5

Date of walk : 04/07/18
Description quality : Very good
Routemap quality : Good
Walk interest : Very good

Unfortunately the route to the falls at the hotel is closed due to building extension instead turning left can turn right and regain route by taking footpath on left

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