The Western Lakes

The Western Lakes – Braithwaite to Coniston in 4 days Walking Code: LIW5

Explore the quieter Western Lakes, though the remote valleys of Ennerdale, Wasdale, Eskdale and Dunnerdale. A great walk through the less visited side of the Lake District.

A beautiful walk through the quieter western part of the Lakes.

Miles Km
Day 1 Travel to Braithwaite for your first nights accommodation
Day 2 Braithwaite to Buttermere 12 19
Day 3 Buttermere to Boot 12 19
Day 4 Boot to Broughton in Furness 14 23
Day 5 Broughton in Furness to Coniston 13 21
Day 6 Depart from Coniston after breakfast

Braithwaite – Buttermere
Leaving Braithwaite you follow Coledale Beck along an even path underneath Grisdale Pike. Once you cross Coledale Beck at the old mine the trail becomes steeper and rocky as you climb Coledale Hause, from where you follow Liza Beck down to the northern end of Crummock Water. You then follow the western shore of Crummock Water to the small settlement of Buttermere. Most of this section is on clear, well maintained trails, however the section over Coledale Hause is somewhat rocky under foot.

Buttermere – Boot
After walking along the shore of Buttermere you ascend Scarth Gap Pass and drop down into the Ennerdale valley before then climbing again and crossing Black Sail Pass and descending into the Wasdale valley. After leaving Wasdale you then cross Eskdale Fell passing the remote Burnmoor Lodage before following Whillan Beck into Boot. From Buttermere to Wasdale the trail is clear, stone tracks. After leaving Wasdale you are mainly on grassy tracks passing Burnmore Tarn before picking up a stony trail into Boot.

Boot – Broughton-in-Furness
After briefly following the river Esk the trail then skirts around the side of Harter Fell and descends into Seathwaite before then climbing over the Dunnerdale Fells before reaching Broughton-in-Furness. This days walk includes a mixture of stony trails, grassy paths and walled tracks.

Broughton-in-Furness – Coniston
Leaving Broughton you head to east towards Coniston Water before then heading north and climbing the side of The Old Man of Coniston. You then descend into the charming village of Coniston.


How much up and down?
Every day will involve at least one significant ascent. There are several climbs of over 500m, with over 700m of climbing on the leg from Coniston to Ambleside, taking you to 802m on the summit of Swirl How.

Signposting: None. You will need to use your route description and map.

Navigation: The paths are well defined, but you will need to read a map and use the route description. You spend some time on higher ground and may encounter mist and hill fog.  While the footpaths the route follows are marked on the map, the route itself is not highlighted.

Weather: You may be lucky enough to encounter warm, dry weather over the whole route and enjoy dry paths and tremendous views, but you must be prepared because the weather can change quickly. Remember you are spending time on higher ground, where it will be colder than in the valleys. Good clothing and waterproofs essential!

All Holidays
Accommodation Overnight Bed and Breakfast accommodation in selected hotels, farmhouses, village inns, guest houses and family B&Bs.Full English or Continental breakfast.
Guidebook A detailed guidebook with route information, maps, photos and background information.
Maps 3 OS 1:25000 Explorer maps covering the whole route.
Personal Itinerary A personal itinerary setting out each overnight stop, including large scale maps of each accommodation, to ensure you find it easily.
Emergency Telephone Support If you get in to difficulties during your holiday.
15% discount at Cotswold Outdoors We will issue you with a 15% Discount Card valid at all Cotswold Outdoor stores for the whole year on confirmation of your booking.
Luggage Transport We will transfer your luggage between each overnight stop If you leave your luggage at the accommodation when you set off in the morning, it will be moved on to your next B&B. You only need to carry a small day sack with the clothes and provisions you require during the day’s walk.

Packed Lunches
Provided for each day’s walking and recommended on this holiday as there will not always be a handy shop or cafe on the route.
Off Road Parking If you are travelling by car we can usually arrange off road parking for the duration of your trip. (There may be a small charge for this).
Arrangement of return transport We can also arrange your transfer back to your car (or advise you when public transport is a better option!).


Good accommodation and friendly hosts are an essential part of any holiday. We understand this and go out of our way to find the best. We put a great deal of effort into hand picking our accommodation and matching it to individual customer requirements. As well as visiting the accommodation ourselves, we ask all our customers to complete a short evaluation on each night’s accommodation, which then gives us an insight in to the day-to-day operation, and lets us spot any potential issues before they become a problem.

We use a variety of accommodation, including small country house hotels, guest houses in market towns, bed and breakfasts in farm houses, country cottages and Victorian town houses. In selecting the accommodation we look for helpful, friendly hosts with good quality, characterful accommodation close to the trail. For example, over the course of your trip you might stay in a village inn, a bed and breakfast in a converted barn, a Victorian guest house, on a working farm, and in a Georgian hotel.

We always try to arrange en suite accommodation, i.e. rooms with their own bathrooms for each night of your stay. However, in some of the more remote locations accommodation is limited and occasionally we may have to book rooms with shared bathrooms for one or two nights of your holiday, (especially if the booking is made at short notice), but we will always let you know if this is likely to be the case.

General travel information will be in your holiday pack including train and bus timetables where available.

Detailed instructions on getting to your first night’s accommodation by car, or on foot from the nearest train or bus station, will also be included in the holiday pack on individual accommodation maps.

To view train times please visit qjump where you can also purchase tickets in advance. For information on bus timetables please visit traveline

If you require secure car parking whilst walking this route, please contact us for information.

Getting to Braithwaite:
By Air:
The nearest international airports are Manchester (MAN) or Newcastle (NCL). You can travel by train to Penrith (approx 2 hours from both) and then bus or taxi to Braithwaite (20 miles).
By Public Transport: Braithwaite’s nearest railway station is Penrith (PNR). You can travel on one of the regular buses to Braithwaite, or by taxi (20 miles).
By Road: take the M6 to Penrith (Jct40), then the A66 to Braithwaite (20 miles).

Getting Away from Coniston:
By Air: The nearest international airports are Manchester (MAN) or Newcastle (NCL).
By Public Transport: Coniston’s nearest railway stations are Ulverston and Windermere, both around 15 miles, with direct bus services.
By Road: Take the A5092 to Greenodd, then the A590 to Junction 36 on the M6 (about 1 hour)



A pleasant Lakeland Village on the shores of Lake Coniston. Take a cruise on the lake on the steam launch “Gondola”. Visit historic Brantwood, nineteenth century home of John Ruskin. For the more energetic, Coniston Old Man is a great walk with tremendous views over the Lake District and Morecambe Bay.

Prices USD ($)
Accommodation, map & guidebook only $696
with Luggage Transport $810
with Packed Lunches $738
with Luggage & Lunches $847

Other Options

Extra Nights (per night) $84
Single Supplement (per night) $39
Solo Luggage Supplement (per day) $28