Reed beds of the River Derwent copyright Charlie Hedley

Miles Without Stiles 34: Derwentwater Lakeshore

Miles Without Stiles

Important note: Due to storm damage to path surfaces this route is not accessible for all so is currently graded as 'for some'. This is a beautiful woodland walk along the western shore of Derwentwater - OS Explorer Map OL4.

Route for some. 8km distance.


Follow the access road to Hawse End, ignoring the signpost to Hawse End jetty. The path continues below the main buildings. Another signpost for the lakeshore takes you off the tarmac road and through a wide gate.

From here, the path is two metres wide with a smooth, compacted stone surface. More wide gateways bring you to the lakeshore at Victoria Bay. The route now weaves south along the shoreline and through the oak woodlands of Brandelhow. The lake views are magnificent, framed by a mountain backdrop. Catbells and High Spy are the steep hillsides behind you while Bleaberry Fell and Walla Crag are over the water. Picnic tables and benches, between High and Low Brandelhow jetties, allow you to savour the scenery.

A short stretch of tarmac leads to the woodland of Manesty Park and on to Great Bay.

The last kilometer of the route is on a recycled plastic boardwalk to the Chinese Bridge and finishes at the Borrowdale Road.


Start point:

Hawse End access road.

Postcode: CA12 5UG
Grid reference: NY 247215
W3W: ///draw.eagles.reservoir


None on route.

Getting there:

Bus: Buttermere Rambler 77 / 77A operates from Keswick and passes Hawse End four times a day from March to November. Boat: Keswick Launch calls at Hawse End eight times a day. Car: minor roads from Keswick to Cat Bells. Parking at Cat Bells is restricted so public transport options are recommended.