Lake District kid-friendly scrambles?

My family and another are having a week’s holiday nr Derwent at the end of July. We’re keen to do some scrambling but never having been to the area, am unsure what is appropriate for our kids ages (2 x 8yrs, 2 x 6 yrs). They’re fairly active and keen but not really used to full days… (yet!)
Any suggestions?

Hi @HollyP

Derwent Water, right? There’s loads of stuff in Borrowdale, but it’s hard for me to describe because I’ve just been up and down randomly, more or less going directly over stuff that has a path around it or playing around through the woods.

E.g. Start from Stonethwaite - OS Grid Ref: NY 25798 14174 and go up to BessyBoots via approximately OS Grid Ref: NY 26009 13004 - there are some cliffs in there but you can avoid. Or go up to OS Grid Ref: NY 26716 14371 after crossing the river at the bridge higher up. But I remember it’s tricky finding good stuff and avoiding the vegetation.

I guess you will have a car. There’s Sharp Edge and Striding Edge which where Sharp Edge has a little bit of real scrambling (I) and both have great situations.

If you go up to Seathwaite (there are busses - get early for parking) then there should be scrambling onto Great Gable and Great End

There’s a Via-Ferrata from the mine in Honister Pass which I haven’t done. Otherwise avoid the area because there are shafts you can fall into.


Thanks Mike. Striding Edge is possibly too optimistic for our 6 year olds but I’ll investigate the others. The via Ferrara I have my eye on already but for the adults only as it’s 10yrs+.

Definitely much too optimistic. Remember they are kids and do not have the staying power of adults, nor can they face or fight inclement weather.

Get Scrambles in the lakes. might help.

Why not a walk over lower hills and maybe a camp in summer. Their packs must be very light. Go by car and then camp.

Just go for walks on low lying hills and along valleys. A walk frtom Little Langdale to the simple bridge Slaters Bridge and onto the Cathedral quarry is a good walk.

Along Langdale from ODG to Mickleden and back.

Try camping at Grange camp site and there are many short walks including a steep trek up a hill behind site/ or continue along valley and over hill backinto Borrowdale. MLC (SD). Remember your son is only 6.

Weather must be fine. No cold, rain, high winds.

Make sure you have biviu shelter and bivi bags.

Trek through Grisedale Forest looking at sculptueres.

Short walk to Mitrerdale from Eskdale.

Walk from Brotherikeld Farm to first bridge and then gently into Upper Eskdale for a glimpse and back.

Best to have another adult with you.


Allen Bordoley

qualified MLC (S)

We have had some great trips to the lakes, Scotland and Wales when ours were smaller, would suggest geocaching, they loved it, like a big treasure hunt and their eyes were often better at spotting the caches. Also giving them the GPS and letting them lead any walk, we used to keep them going up big hills by promising a stop at a certain height for a snack.
If the weather is good go for a big hill, but be realistic about timings, ours easily managed some big mountains from the age of 5 but it was not a quick ascent and we had to carry everything (except the kids had “camelback” type water backpacks from decathlon they were happy to carry,)and often took teddies in them to the top, plenty of summit photos with favourite soft toys.Equally if the weather is good a day playing in the river in beautiful surroundings. Cycling in Grizedale forest another great lakes day out with them. have fun and hope the sun shines.
Word of warnings re scrambling, kids are fearless, they will probably be fine but your nerves will be in tatters, suggest a short rope for peace of mind.

Thanks @allenbordoley and @rspillett - great tips. We cycled in Grizedale 2 years ago so love that already. Love the idea of geocaching on a walk, that’s definitely up the kids’ street. Keep them motivated!