Short strolls from the Crake Valley Park
To get to the Coniston Lake, go down the drive and cross over to the car park. Take the path at the back of the car park and through the wooden gate, follow the signs that will bring you to the Lake Bank Jetty. You can also carry on past the gate, turn right to follow the path through the gap in the stone wall. Follow this path past the first access point to the lake until you cross two small wooden bridges to reach a bay, looking back to Lake Bank. You can follow the lake shore north for another 5 minutes ending at a small bay with great views up the lake. Just do not forget your boots or wellies!
To get a great viewpoint above the Park, before the cattle grid turn right up the concrete drive. Go up the path keeping the stone wall on your left and then continue up the hill for 5-10 minutes. You will eventually reach a rocky viewpoint with fantastic views up the lake.
Coniston Water is the third largest of the lakes in the Lake District. It is 5.4 miles long and has three small islands owned by the National Trust. The Coniston Launch and the Coniston Steam Gondola provide regular crouises throughout the year to jetties around Coniston Water, including Lake Bank Jetty, a short walk from Crake Valley Park.
The Victorian philosopher John Ruskin bought Brantwood House at the lake in 1871 declaring the view over the lake to ‘The Old Man of Coniston’ to be ‘the best in all of England’.
Arthur Ransome based his book 'Swallows and Amazons' on Coniston Water, the fans can try to discover the locations of the stories.
Sir Malcolm Campbell chose Coniston for his attempt at the water speed record in 1939, which he achieved at over 141 miles per hour. On his death, his son Donald Campbell took up where his father left off. His aim was to better 300 miles per hour, which he did on 4th January 1967, but the craft, ‘Bluebird’, shot up into the air and disappeared into the lake. His body was only found in 2001.
The Old Man of Coniston, the most popular in the area offers various well-marked paths to the summit.
From the village of Coniston, a path takes you deep into the old Coppermine’s Valley, with its beck and waterfalls. At the head of the valley you carry on to discover the hidden tarns set on the lower slopes of the mountain.
On the east side of Coniston Water lies the Grizedale Forest where you can find paths and tracks for walking and mountain biking.
Towns and Villages
The village of Coniston is situated at the picturesque Coniston Water shore, sheltered in the Coniston mountain range. Its main streets are the home of a fine church, shops, a post office, cafes, a local brewery and five good pubs. It is the main departure point for the Launch and the Gondola and a base for a range of outdoor activities.
Hawkshead is one of the most beautiful villages in the Lake District, with its cobbled streets, courtyards and whitewashed cottages. The village is steeped in history, from the 15th century parish church to the grammar school attended by William Wordsworth.
Ulverston and Broughton-in-Furness are both historic market towns well worth exploring, featuring award winning cafes and numerous gift shops with character.