15th June 2008

A circuit of Thirlmere


Walk Overview
Time 09.15 to 14.45
Duration 5 hr 30 min
Distance 9.6 mile
Walking with Jennifer
Thirlmere Dam - Armboth - Hause Point - Dob Gill - Steele End - Wythburn Church - Woods above A591 - Swirls - Shoreline path below Dalehead Hall - Thirlmere Dam
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Parking spaces, Thirlmere Dam

I think I'm correct in saying this is the preferred parking spot for peak baggers who are intent on a quick there and back walk up Raven Crag. And while this is indeed the closest parking spot to Raven Crag, there actually considerably more routes to be had from here. To name a few, you could undertake a complete circuit of Thirlmere, head north to St John's in the Vale and High Rigg or even have a short walk onto Great How.

In or around August 2011 a pay and display machine was installed in this car park.

However, , , , if you continue a short way down the road towards the A591 you can park for free in a lay-by. The free parking spot is indicated by the higher of the two red arrows.

Route Map

Today's walk took us on a circuit of Thirlmere along paths and sections of road, all of which I have actually been along before, but never on the same walk. The list of lakes that I've walked around in a single walk is slowly getting shorter, with the obvious ones remaining undone and one or two unlikely ever to be done. I should imagine the next one will be Coniston, then there's Ullswater and Bassenthwaite, both of which have a big question mark next to them, but I'm afraid that Windermere will always be the one that got away.

Helvellyn Lower Man and Browncove Crags, seen from the start of the walk along the road.

There isn't much I can add to this really.


Granted; it isn't very often that you look at Thirlmere and end up thinking just how full it is, as there always seems to be a broad shoreline, but this is going a bit too far.

A sensible use of one of the felled trees in the Armboth car park. I wonder if anyone will come back and make a table to go with the seat.

One of the many lovely stretches of woodland we enjoyed on today's walk.

And one of the many 'none woodland' areas.

It looks like the tide is out.


Hawes How Island.

There was quite a long section of road walking along this side of the lake, but with views like this one and almost no traffic, it was just as enjoyable as being up on the fells.
The lowest point in the skyline is Dunmail Raise.

Steel End.

And one of the local residents.

Now for return leg of the journey; initially at this end on slightly higher ground and some distance from the lake. Once past Swirls however, we were able to drop down to the lake shore path again.

The view of Thirlmere is much improved from most places since the tree felling was done, but the view from up here really shows the difference.

And looking back to the Steel End / Steel Fell end of the lake.

From Swirls car park looking towards St John's in the Vale and Blencathra (in the distance).

More evidence of tree felling.



A close up of Helvellyn Lower Man and Browncove Crags.

David Hall -
Lake District Walks