A guided walk up the Old Man of Coniston will take you to stunning mountain views and show you some of the Lake District’s industrial past. On a fine day the views are spectacular. But the weather can often be poor or change quickly from good to bad. When the visibility goes, in rain or low cloud, it can be a scary place with dangerous cliffs around. A guide who knows the route can help keep you safe as well as sharing a host of useful tips with you.
Booking and Prices
If you want to book a guided walk up the Old Man of Coniston in the Lake District then see the main page for more details and prices. When you are ready, then get in touch to make an enquiry or a booking.
Guided Walk – The Coppermines Valley and The Bell
The ‘coppermines’ valley has been mined for, you guessed it, copper since the Elizabethan era over 400 years ago. The track up to the YHA building, a former mining manager’s building, is a relatively gentle climb. It passes a beautiful stream gorge as well as a row of old mining cottages before reaching the heart of mining territory. Here, there are historical walks to follow around the valley and a number of mine entrances that can be accessed by those with the right knowledge.
Overlooking the valley is the small hill of The Bell. For those with the time, the short detour to the top of The Bell gives superb views over the whole of Coniston Water. This is where Donald Campbell tragically died in 1967 in his boat the Bluebird, while trying to break his own world water speed records.
Guided Walk – Old Man of Coniston
The track up to the Old Man continues, passing old mine workings and buildings before reaching the small tarn of Low Water. From there, a final steep zig-zag path and a short scramble lead to the summit. The views from here are staggering. To the south is Coniston Water and beyond the sea, at Duddon Sands and Morecambe Bay. Over to the west, the power station at Sellafield is visible on the coast of the Irish Sea. To the north-west, are the central fells of the Lake District, with all the well known peaks. Scafell, Scafell Pike, Great End, Bowfell and Crinkle Crags. Finally, to the north a long, broad ridge leads to Wetherlam, the other main peak of this part of the Lake District.
Guided walk – The Coniston Fells
From the Old Man, there are a number of obvious ways to continue a walk of the Coniston Fells. A descent via Goat’s Water is one option, passing below the enormous cliffs of Dow Crag. Alternatively, you can traverse over the cliffs over the top of Dow Crag and Buck Pike. Or, one can continue north. The broad grassy ridge leads first to Swirl How. From here, more of the western Lake District comes into view, including the Langdale Pikes.
After descending from Swirl How, one can continue the descent via Levers Water and back to Coniston. Or you can fit in another summit, climbing to the top of Wetherlam before finally returning to Coniston.