Loughrigg Fell is one of the smallest peaks in Lakeland at 335m (1101ft) above sea level. It is located between the two very popular holiday destinations of Grasmere and Ambleside. The mountain can be climbed from pretty much any direction - the shortest route is from the west, starting at Red Bank and the longest from Ambleside (which is also one of the best routes). The summit is marked by a Triangulation Pillar and offers fantastic views in all directions. The Langdale Pikes, Bowfell and Crinkle Crags are particularly lovely from this angle. There are several lower summits on the south eastern side of the fell too. The subsidiary summit with the most striking view is just east of Todd Crag, and worth the 20 minute climb from Clappersgate. If a longer walk is wanted then you can continue up to the summit of Loughrigg Fell from Todd Crag. On the north side of the fell just near Rydal Water the OS map marks some disused quarries. These quarries are known as Loughrigg (or Rydal) Caves and are worth the short walk from Rydal or Grasmere.
One of the most picturesque tarns in the whole Lake District is Loughrigg Tarn just to the south of the summit. If walking in the area I would highly recommend a trip to the tarn!
Loughrigg Fell is located about 3 miles north west of Ambleside. To get to Ambleside follow the A591 south from Keswick or North West from Kendal. Kendal is just off the M6 which runs north-south along the eastern side of The Lake District. If coming from the east I would recommend the A66 to Penrith and then onto Keswick followed by the A591 South. An alternate route from the south-east you can follow the A59-A65 from Harrowgate just off the A1(m).
There is free car parking near Tarn Foot Farm on the south side of the fell near Loughrigg Tarn. Additional parking is available along the road at Skelwith Bridge to the south too. There are several long stay car parks in Ambleside, Rydal and Grasmere.
Route 1 (Green Route)
This route starts off at Grasmere (although parking is available for about 3 cars at the top of Red Bank). Follow the road out of Grasmere to the south west and up along Red Bank road taking the path off to the left to Loughrigg Terrace. The path then ascends in a fairly straight line up the North-West side of the fell. This is the most simple route up Loughrigg Fell.
Route 2 - Blue Route
This is a lovely short route up. Starting off just outside Tarn Foot Farm the route follows a footpath around the farm grounds and is the main path towards Ambleside. After passing through a gate which is signposted to Ambleside there is a faint path up the fell on the left alongside a small stream which takes you up to Ivy Crag. The path continues past the crag and up to the summit.
Route 3 - Red Route
This is a slightly longer ascent from Ambleside. Follow the path past Ambleside church and through Rothay Park. Over the slate footbridge to the country lane, turn right and then on the left is the main path over to Loughrigg. Follow this path gently up until a path heads off to the right and meanders its way around the many lumps and bumps along the top of the fell to the summit.
Route 4 - Purple Route
This route starts at Rydal and heads around to the west to Loughrigg Cave and then ascends the fell alongside the cave to the south before turning west to the summit.
Route to Todd Crag View (Yellow Route)
This starts at Clappersgate (with roadside parking) and heads to the phone boc in Clappersgate. Just by the phone box is a footpath that heads north west and ascends up the fell to two viewpoints marked by benches. At the second bench do not cross the wall, hairpin to the right to continue to head up the fell and once at the top admire the amazing view south!
No Red Tape - although signs are up recommending you do not enter Loughrigg Cave due to rockfall - enter at your own risk.
When to Climb
Loughrigg Fell can be climbed all year round. Care should be taken in winter as the Lake District can get a fair amount of snow. The area is a godo training ground for Winter Mountaineering.
Tarn Foot Farm has a small camping field which is just to the south of Loughrigg Fell.
Loughrigg Fell Photos and Information