The beautiful weather this week reminded me of a walk we did a few years ago in the Lake District. Great Gable had been on both of our ‘to-do’ lists for quite a while, and as we were staying close by, we thought we would stop off on our way home at the end of the weekend.
We chose to walk Great Gable along with Kirk Fell, as we thought that the route would be quieter than ascending Great Gable directly from Wasdale. There is free parking in Wasdale but get there early as it fills up! It was a tough walk with lots of steep ascents, made sweatier by the beautiful weather, but the views from Kirk Fell were stunning and we had them all to ourselves! A rarity in the Lake District these days and all the more special because of it. The summit of Kirk Fell is a great place to stop and have lunch (please remember to take your litter home) – you’ll need the extra fuel to ascend Great Gable after coming down Kirk Fell! The image at the top of the page is the view of Great Gable from Kirk Fell – I will admit my courage nearly failed me when I saw how far we had to climb! The ascent itself wasn’t too bad however and is definitely easier than the climb up Kirk Fell, so keep going!
This is a fab walk for dogs who love water. There is quite a bit of water at the start of the walk, and you will come to a series of tarns between Kirk Fell and Great Gable. Merry loved having a chance to jump in for a swim to cool off, and the water was so clear that I was tempted to jump in and join him!
As always in the Lake District there are sheep on this walk so keep your dog under close control. We use a Ruffwear roamer lead on walks like this where we are likely to need to use both hands to scramble – you can clip it around your waist and use both hands to stay upright!
At the end of the walk we treated ourselves to dinner at the Wasdale Head Inn. We sat outside as it was such a lovely evening so I’m not sure if they allow dogs inside, but there were water bowls outside for dogs to drink from which was useful. It was lovely seeing all the crowds of people coming down Scafell Pike and having seen pretty much exactly the same view from the top of Great Gable, with about a tenth of the number of people on the summit.
Overall dog friendly rating – 3.5/5. Your dog will need to be under close control for all of this walk, and there are no poo bins so you will need carry poo bags the whole way. However, this is a lovely walk and much quieter than I expected it to be, with opportunities for swimming and scrambling – which adventurous pups like Merry will love!
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