Day 1 – Bassenthwaite Lake to Derwent Water

10 miles

I'm off! Warm sunshine greets me, which makes a pleasant change from the steady downpours.

My starting point is the north end of Bassenthwaite Lake at Cottage Wood, on the delightful Allerdale Ramble (AR).

St Bega's

With cloud rumbling back in, the going is easy on the flat shoreline and farmland path. St Bega's church soon comes into view and is well worth a quick peruse.

Passing Mirehouse, still on the Ramble, the going gets steeper as I climb into Thornthwaite Forest. Nesting ospreys have caused the closure of many paths but it's still a lovely walk with Skiddaw and Little Man as a back drop.

Stop for a quick brew with superb views over Bassenthwaite Lake and the River Derwent. No ospreys though!

Quick pint

Dropping out of the Forest, the tops are saturated with low, very grey, wet cloud. Oh dear! Route now crosses flat farmland eventually reaching Portinscale, just north of Derwent Water.

Time for a quick pint, then back on the trail which is now the Cumbria Way (CW) and Allerdale Ramble.


Through a dense wood called Overside (sighted a Muntjac deer feeding) and ascend a short way up Skelgill Bank for my first overnight pitch.

I'm feeling pleased after my first day. Couscous for dinner, then kept awake all night by owls and foxes. Ahh! The peace and quiet of the countryside!