Burnbank Fell is situated to the west of Loweswater village and south west of the body of water with the same name. Its steep grass slopes rising above Holme Wood make for an impressive looking fell given its modest height of
Holme Wood with the delightful Holme Force is a pleasant stroll in itself without any of this bagging summits stuff(!). In spring before the tree canopy shades everything below, bluebells cover the woodland floor with a sea of beautiful blues and greens. The trees are mixed conifers and deciduous.
Linking the woods with Burnbank Fell above is a remarkable terraced track giving sensational views to the Grasmoor range, and to the pastoral Vale of Lorton and Loweswater. A bench on the terrace makes an excellent lunch stop.
It is worth noting here that the route of ascent described in Wainwright's Western Fells: Burnbank Fell page 3, has little to recommend it. An easy grass slope to above an old mine level is far preferable especially as it has a good path. If wishing to view the entrance you can drop down to it from the path.
Park in the informal layby at the telephone box near Waterend at the northern end of Loweswater, where there is space for a dozen cars.
Walk height profile
note that gradients are usually grossly exaggerated
At the north western end of the layby go through the gate signposted public footpath "Holme Wood ¼" to follow the path alongside the hedgerow. Go through the gap into the field to the right, and then bear left to cross the footbridge over Dub Beck, and a gate. Cross the wet boggy ground at the end of Loweswater on the raised gravel footpath and go through the gate onto the farm driveway. Turn left and follow the road up to Hudson Place.
Keep left through Hudson Place and take the gate on the left into a rough narrow lane. Drop down and at the bottom go through another gate, bear right on the track.
Go through yet another gate into the National Trust Holme Wood.
Keep right through the wood, in 300m (330 yards) turn right between tall guardian trees onto a rough track. In spring the woods here are covered in bluebells. At first the track climbs only gently, but it soon steepens. The sound of Holme Force gets louder as the path swings left to pass below it. Much of the upper falls are hidden in the trees. Continue along the track which tends to be wet and soft.
In 400m (440 yards) from the force turn sharp right to climb steeply on a rough terraced path. At the end of the path, go through the kissing gate and bear right onto the track heading into the ravine of Holme Beck. Cross the beck by the bridge and continue around the shoulder. The ground rises steeply to your left, and falls away to your right.
Follow the wide terraced path beneath Burnbank Fell, from which there are fantastic views across Loweswater and to the Grasmoor fells. Reaching the gate go through.
Turn left and cross the grass, skirt a patch of bracken on the right hand side, then picking up a faint path bear left to climb steeply along a vague shelf. Follow the path as it passes above old mine workings to a small cairn - marked as 'pile of stones' on the OS 25K map.
Bear right still climbing to another cairn, keep following the path and in only a few more metres the gradient eases. The path then makes for a fence corner, yet unseen over the brow, south east across a grass and moss boggy expanse.
The small summit cairn is across the fence which can be stepped over with little problem.
Hop back over the fence and retrace your steps, heading north east back across the boggy ground to the two cairns above the mine workings, and down to the gate on the terrace. Turn right through the gate and follow the terrace back across Holme Beck then in 100m (110 yards) leave the track and bear left taking the gate into Holme Wood again.
Follow the path descending all the way through the woods, go directly across any side tracks, to the shore of Loweswater beside another gate. Don't go through - that way leads to Maggie's Bridge.
Turn left and follow the gravelled track along the shore line. Just over the bridge the track splits, bear right to go past the National Trust bothy and continue along the shoreline.
Rejoining the track, bear right to the gate leaving Holme Wood and back across the enclosures, along the lane up to Hudson Place.
Turn right and go through the edge of the yard and exit via the road. In 200m (220 yards) as the road turns left, turn right through the gateway and follow the path across the boggy ground, over the footbridge with the gate, and fields, back to the parking area.
If you like this walk then why not try one of our other nearby walks:
|A stroll to Holm Wood beside Loweswater||same start point|
|Gavel Fell and Blake Fell from Maggie's Bridge, Loweswater||2.2km (1.3 miles) away|
|Mellbreak and Scale Force||2.8km (1.8 miles) away|
|Hen Comb from Loweswater village||2.9km (1.8 miles) away|
|Lanthwaite Wood and Crummock Water||3.3km (2.0 miles) away|
|Fellbarrow from Thackthwaite, Lorton Vale||3.4km (2.1 miles) away|
|The Grasmoor Six Wainwright Fells||4.4km (2.7 miles) away|
Unless otherwise stated the text in this walk is the copyright of Hug Solutions Ltd trading as The Hug and the photographs are the copyright of Elizabeth Oldham. Hill data is derived from Database of British and Irish hills which is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License. Maps contains Ordnance Survey data © Crown copyright and database right 2011 and paths © OpenStreetMap Contributors,CC-BY-SA, 2011