Walla Crag, Bleaberry Fell and High Seat

Enjoy fantastic views from the three Wainwright summits of Walla Crag, Bleaberry Fell and High Seat before dropping down to the much-photographed Ashness Bridge and returning along the shores of Derwentwater. 

  • Distance - 9.5 miles 
  • Time - 5 hours
  • Starting point - Market Square Keswick
  • Notes - This walk is best undertaken after a period of dry weather due to the extremely boggy section between Bleaberry Fell and High Seat. The route from High Seat to Ashness Bridge via Ashness Gill is a fairly steep descent.
  • Feedback - Please contact Keswick Tourism Association email info@keswick.org

1 Start from the Moot Hall in Market Square & head between Gregg's Bakery and The Royal Oak at Keswick into St John's Street. Pass the George Hotel on your left and shortly after pass St John's Church on your right. The road curves to the left. Just before the road starts to go uphill turn right into Springs Road

2. Follow the road as it bends first left and then right until it ends at Springs Farm. Go through the gate and up into Springs Wood. Walk up through the wood with the stream on your left. Shortly the path splits in two, take the right-hand path. The path bends to the left and as it continues upwards the views over Derwentwater to the fells beyond open up as you climb giving you the opportunity to catch your breath and take a photo. The path continues past a mobile mast.

3. Go through a kissing gate and continue through a wooded section to a wooden bridge over the steam. Cross the bridge and continue up to a gate. Turn right onto a lane and shortly at a fork take the right hand one sign posted Walla Crag. Cross the stream over a wooden bridge and follow the path uphill signposted Walla Crag 1 mile. The path soon goes through a gate and continue upwards. After a short but steep climb take time to enjoy the views over Keswick, the Skiddaw range, Derwentwater and Bassenthwaite Lake.

4. The path drops down to where there is often a boggy patch and then rises to meet a wall next to a cairn. Here you have a choice of routes, you can go through a kissing gate on your right which takes you to the summit via a rocky path close to the edge of the crag with fine views over Derwentwater. Alternatively, continue forwards up the grassy path beside the wall. The path goes down and back up again, again it can be quite boggy in the dip. At the top of the next rise, a stile on your right takes you past a cairn to the first summit of the day Walla Crag. Take time to enjoy the stunning views from Walla Crag over Derwentwater to the fells beyond, over Keswick Town, Skiddaw and Bassenthwaite Lake.

5. Leave Walla Crag via a stile which leads over to a short rocky section. At a cairn take the left hand of two paths and then keep left at a fork in the route. A clear path now climbs to the summit of Bleaberry Fell, The path starts gently with a final short steep pull to the summit from where there are excellent views over Skiddaw and Blencathra and towards the Dodds and the Helvellyn range.

6. Our route now heads to the final and highest summit of the day High Seat. Follow the path to the right for approximately a mile to ascend the craggy slope of High Seat. There is not much height gain between the two summits, the main challenge being the notoriously boggy ground between the two. The track is clear and reasonably well-defined to start with but becomes increasingly wet the further you go along. Pick the driest route across you can find before climbing up to the trig point marking the summit, where you are rewarded with a magnificent view.

7. Descend from High Seat to the North West, the mostly well-surfaced path seeming a luxury with only occasional boggy patches to negotiate. After crossing an area of moorland the path drops steeply alongside Ashness Gill and Barrow Beck. Continue down to eventually reach the intake wall, pass through a kissing gate and descend to Ashness Bridge. take care on the grassy section after the gate as it can be slippery.

8. Proceed down the road, taking care as there is no pavement. Cross over the road at the bottom of the hill and go through a gap in the wall and down the steps to reach Ashness landing stage. You can take the Keswick Launch back at this point if you would like to shorten the walk. To proceed, if the lake levels are low enough, you can walk along the lakeshore. The lakeshore path can be quite scrambly when lake levels are high. Alternatively go back up the steps and follow the roadside pavement and rejoin the lakeshore path at a suitable place further along. A little further along the lakeshore the going becomes easier and the path takes you over a wooden bridge over a stream. The path rises to a bench and soon drops down again to Calfclose Bay.

9. From Calfclose Bay take the path that leaves the shoreline and takes you through the woods and then continues parallel to Borrowdale Road. Continue on this path until it eventually meets the road on the outskirts of Keswick. Cross over the road and continue forward into town and through the pedestrianised area back to the Market Square.

Map created at GPSvisualiser.com

Map data from Openstreetmap.org

Download pdf - Walla Crag, Bleaberry fell & High Seat walking route

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Descent from High Seat