7 min read

Pre-wedding Honeymoon – Day 1

Day 1 Exploring the Lake District

So, a pre-wedding honeymoon? What the…? Why the…? Who the…? When the…?

It’s simple really. When we came up with the plan to get married in Scotland, the only way logistically to do it was to plan our holiday with the girls around the wedding. This will obviously mean that once the big day is done and dusted our time away will be spent with our family unlike what most people would normally do, i.e. have a romantic honeymoon somewhere exotic…alone…without any children in tow!

Knowing that we’ll more than likely have very little time alone together while in Scotland after our wedding we decided back in October last year to have a long weekend away over Easter. Where to go though? So many places to visit and so little time?

Having driven up to Scotland quite a few times now, every time we passed the Lake District as we headed up the M6 we both agreed that it was definitely somewhere we needed to spend some time. The Lake District it was to be!

Digging around t’interwebs for ideas on where to stay, and more importantly where to walk, we booked a long weekend at the Glenridding Hotel on Ullswater, the second largest lake in the Lake District.

Hotel booked we got to looking at walks in the surrounding area to the hotel, coming up with a shortlist of about five walks of varying lengths. Excited about our weekend away would be an understatement!

Unfortunately, over the winter the hotel was badly hit by the flooding in Glenridding. Not surprising really as it has the river Ulls Water running right down the side of the hotel! Glenridding was all over the news for weeks and we were informed at the time that they were shutting the hotel but they would hopefully be open for Easter…phew!

Sadly that wasn’t to be the case. Another month of bad weather and more flooding shut them down completely – they let us know on the 8th January – and so began a frantic search for somewhere else to stay. As you can imagine this wasn’t a particularly easy task as everywhere was pretty much booked up now that the new year had arrived.

After a few days of scouring the World-Wide-Wait for ideas we finally came across the Beech Hill hotel on Windermere, at 10.5 miles long, one mile wide and 220 feet deep, the largest natural lake in England.

Unlike the hotel un Ullswater that had lots of walks right outside the hotel front door, there wasn’t really any fell walking right from the hotel. Not to worry. After a little bit of digging around we came up with enough walks to keep us going for the long weekend, most of which were only a short drive away.

The long weekend booked all we had to do was [impatiently] wait for it to come round!

Around Loughrigg Fell

After what started out a pretty good drive up to the Lakes, finally turning into a bit of a nightmare due to some rubbish roadworks, we drove past the hotel and up to Ambleside at the head of Windermere for a well deserved stretching of the legs.

The weather was looking pretty good so we parked the car at the car park at the Armitt Gallery Museum & Library, put our walking boots on, grabbed our cameras, and headed out towards Loughrigg Fell.

The walk started off nice and gently as we made our way out to River Rothay but then the path went up, and up, and up. Having been in the car for hours it was a bit of a shock to the system to say the least.

The climb was well worth it though. The view over the hills and out over Windermere was absolutely stunning! It was a bit fresh up there though even with the sunshine. The wind whipped over the hills and it was definitely chilly on the ears.

Views of the lake soaked up we headed over to Lily Tarn and then around the hills out to Loughrigg Tarn, where we stopped for some snacks and a little break.

Rested we headed round the shore of Loughrigg Tarn where we came across a memorial cross by the shoreline. The cross – known as the Cowley Cross – commemorates the day a young pupil called John Skelton drowned in the lake in 1960.

From Loughrigg Tarn we headed up the road, turning back towards Ambleside at Grasmere lake. The views over the lake were stunning but from the lake we headed down to Rydal Water, walking along the shoreline, watching a lovely dog play in the water.

As we made our way back to Ambleside we had to change the route from the one originally planned. A footbridge over the Rothay was closed – no doubt due to the flooding – and instead over crossing the A591 and out over the fields back to Ambleside we followed the river back to where we originally crossed it near the beginning of the walk.

On the way back to the car Shelli realised that she’d lost her sun glasses – one not very happy Shelli!

We made it back to the car, and with time getting on, we drove to the hotel to check in and get ready for dinner in the hotel restaurant.

The room was nice with a good view over Windermere and the food was amazing! The only thing to fault the place on was a severe lack of ale in the hotel bar, which is surprising considering the local breweries (Jennings, Keswick etc.).

The walk around Loughrigg Fell was a spectacular introduction to the Lake District and the weather had been perfect!


Route Details

If you’re interested you can download the KML file and/or GPX file of the plotted route. Please be aware though that the route was hand-plotted and so may not be 100% accurate.

Walk Statistics

Miles Start (HH:MM) Finish (HH:MM) Breaks (HH:MM) Walking (HH:MM) Pace (MPH) Steps Taken
7.41 13:15 16:45 00:10 03:20 2.22 15,230


Route Map

Elevation Details

Start Elavation (m) End Elavation (m) Max Elevation (m) Min Elevation (m) Total Climb (m) Total Descent (m) Climbs on Route
56 56 207 45 403 -403 2

Climb Details

Rating Start Point (miles) End Point (miles) Length (miles) Start Elevation (m) End Elevation (m) Average Grade
4 0.06 1.57 1.51 56 207 6.1%
5 2.89 3.96 1.07 99 174 3.5%

More information about climb ratings can be found at Map My Walk.