When you decide to hike through England, there are numerous questions you will likely ask yourself. How many lakes in the Lake District National Park will you come across? And more importantly, how many Lake District mountains will you be able to climb?
Covering 2,368 square kilometres and an elevation of 978 meters (3,209 feet), Lake District is a focal point for mountain climbers. Regardless of your choice, you can enjoy multiple challenging routes.
Lake District National Park, in Cumbria, is home to England’s ten-highest mountains
If you are wondering how many mountains in the Lake District you can climb, the answer is very simple: 214. There are so many of them in this National Park that a full-month vacation would not be enough to tackle them all. There are many fells there as well (smaller mountains or hills), but Lake District is known for the fact that it has some of the highest mountains in England. Regardless of your climbing level, you have plenty of options to make your pick.
Scafell Pike – The Highest Mountain in England
Commonly referred to as the highest mountain in the UK, Scafell Pike is a challenge for many hikers looking for a bit of adventure. At 978 metres (3,209 feet), it’s considered the tallest mountain in England. Featuring multiple 1st and 2nd-degree scrambles, this is considered a fairly difficult mountain, with quite a few steep rocks. The hike starts at Wasdale Head, and it takes an experienced mountain goer about 5 hours to climb.
Scafell, not to be confused with Scafell Pike
While often confused with Scafell Pike, these two are very different fells. They’re at a stone’s throw from one another but are separated by the Broad stand. At 964 metres (3,163 feet), most people call Scafell the “child summit of Scafell Pike.” To start hiking the mountain, you need to begin at Wastwater and then ascend 964 m to reach the top. It takes about 5 hours to complete a hike on this mountain.
At 950 metres (3114 feet), this mountain is only slightly smaller than Scafell and can be completed in about 4-5 hours. The usual route is through the Striding Edge, and you may start from the central point of the Lake District National Park. Helvellyn has enough steep paths and scrambles to make it rather challenging, but its width makes it fairly manageable as well.
At 931 metres (3053 feet), Skiddaw is the fourth highest mountain in Lake District. That being said, the width is fairly large, which means that a climb on this mountain can take about 6-7 hours to complete. It is a good option for those wanting a scenic route, as the fells are covered in grass, bracken, scree, and heather. You can take multiple routes to reach the top, but the Jenkin Hill Path is among the most popular.
The Great End is a 908-metre (2959-foot) mountain found in the northernmost corner of the Scafell chain. If you look at it from the south, the mountain doesn’t seem that big – just a hill that looks like nothing much. However, if you look at the Great End from the north, that’s when you will see the glory of the mountain. It’s a fairly difficult climb, but if you have enough experience, it will take you about 3 hours to reach the top.
While Bowfell can be steep, this 902-metre (2,959-foot) pyramid-shaped formation is a great option for walkers. The route takes you through the Tree Tarns, taking you straight to the Crinkle Crag and up the top of Bowfell. There are quite a few scrambles and steep rocks, and it can take 5-6 hours to get there but the view from up the mountain is fantastic.
At 899 metres (2949 feet), the Great Gable is not the highest mountain, but there is a reason why it’s a symbol of the Lake District Park. The views once you reach the top are stunning, especially on a clear day, and they will most definitely take your breath away. Between the more challenging points, you can also find some areas of smooth ascension, where you may walk at your own pace.
At 892 metres (2927 feet), Pillar is more or less a rugged mass with a conical appearance. There are two summits here: the Low Man and the High Man. Part of the Great Gable, this was very popular among early British climbers. It features rocks of every grade, making it a very exciting challenge.
The Nethermost Pike is a good mountain for those seeking a moderate climb. Its parent summit is Helvellyn, and at 891 metres (2923 feet), it is seen as one of the highest Lake District mountains. You will pass by various farmhouses at the bottom of the mountain, and the top is certainly breathless. It’s a rather challenging climb but certainly awe-inspiring.
A Helvellyn mountain outliner, this 889-metre (2949-foot) mountain is perfect for those looking for a walk. It takes about 5 hours to climb, and there are various smooth grassy slopes followed by steeper slopes. The mountain takes the shape of a pyramid, and you will get a great view of Helvellyn’s peak when you reach the top.
Other Mountain Groups Worth Mentioning
If you want to climb some fells but the highest Lake District mountains still intimidate you, there are some smaller, easier routes that you can take. Among the most popular for beginner hikers include:
The Fairfield Group
If you are in the mood for hiking over more than one peak during your hike, the Fairfield group can give you that opportunity (the famous Fairfield Horseshoe). You can scale above one, descend, and then move to another through a valley. While traversing the valley, you will oversee the Ambleside village. There are different routes that you may use, but the most popular one will take you about 6-7 hours.
The Langdale Pikes
If you adventure on the Langdale Pikes, you will see quite a bit of lovely scenery. If you take the hike through Dungeon Gill to reach the Harrison Sickle, you will pass by some stunning waterfalls. It is the perfect spot to stop and enjoy the view during a picnic.
The Coniston Fells
Depending on the slope that you are on, you will see some very different things. On the lower slope, you will see proof of industrial work: mine workings and various quarries. However, on the higher slopes, you will be mostly surrounded by nature. Most of the climbs are grade-1, but some grade-2 sections will give adventurous hikers a thrill. Depending on the route that you take, you can finish the climb in anything between 2 to 7 hours.
The Lake District Mountains – The Bottom Line
Lake District National Park gives you plenty of opportunities for mountain climbing. Whether you want a lower peak or a higher point, you can tackle the fells and mountains for a day of adventure.