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Lake District running guide

With breath taking views, fresh countryside air and so much room to roam, the Lake District offers some of the UK’s most beautiful running routes in our Lake District running guide. Aside from the physical benefits of running, it’s proven that exercise is great for mental wellbeing too. The Lake District is home to many testing running routes which are perfect for experienced mountain runners or those who just want to set themselves a challenge. Here is our Lake District running guide.

Wasdale to Honister

Where to stay: YHA Wasdale Hall or YHA Honister Hause

Our first route on our ‘Lake District running guide’ is Wasdale and HonisterA challenging route but tranquil as you take in nine different beautiful western fells. This route is quiet, often with no one else in sight – perfect for some peace and quiet. Start at Brackenclose car park, Wasdale Head, and then turn left onto the road and through the gate, across Lingmel Beck and ascend Yewbarrow summit. Once you’ve reached the summit, head along the ridge north towards Stirrup Crag then left at Dore Head. Continue over Red Pike, Steeple, Kirk Fell, Great Gable, Green Gable, Brandreth and Grey Knotts. Descend left onto a grassy track and along to a quarry track where you will then see YHA Honister Hause. Head into the hostel for a well-deserved drink by a roaring fire. The perfect way to end a run in the Lakes.

Wansfell Pike

Where to stay: YHA Ambleside

Next on our Lake District running guide is Wansfell Pike. For those who are looking for a shorter run, Wansfell Pike is a lower peak which means it’s nicer if you’re wanting a less physically demanding run or if the weather’s not great. And in the colder months, the Lakes don’t tend to be on our side when it comes to the weather. The route of this popular run ascends from the north west slope directly from Ambleside or if you prefer trail running then descend to Troutbeck via Robin Lane and High Skelghyll farm.

A route that offers something for all types of runners and is best at the end of the day when Lake Windermere reflects the orange and red hues of the sunset sky.

Lakeland Trails, Keswick

Where to stay:YHA Keswick

Next on our Lake District running guide is the Lakeland Trails. For those who are competitive, you can now sign up to compete in the Lakeland Trails for September 2020. Starting and finishing at Fitz Park, Keswick, the 5k Derwentwater Sport Trail, 10k Derwentwater Trail Run, 15k Derwentwater Trail and Challenge and 15k Derwentwater Trail Race is a circuit along marshalled footpaths and bridleways.

Spectators cheering along with a carnival atmosphere will get you pumped ready for the race. But in this gorgeous setting, maybe the metaphor of the tortoise and the hare applies as a slower pace allows you to take in the panoramic views of Derwentwater and the surrounding peaks of Skiddaw and Blencathra. One eye on the views, one eye on the race.


Running in the Lakes can be enjoyed all year round, but do not underestimate the harsh weather in the colder months, especially as you ascend mountains and peaks. The warmer months are undoubtedly busier, but the ground is firmer, and the weather is warmer which makes the Lakes the ideal place to run. Remember to map your run before you take off, and be wary of any road crossings, rocky terrain and unsteady grounds.

If you’re planning on visiting the Lakes, make sure to check our our 3 days in the Lake District article.

Written by Ruby Higton

Here is Ruby and she is a digital marketer at YHA. She looks after all things social media, as well as content writing for and SEO. Her favourite YHA is YHA Perranporth.

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ActivitiesLake District running guide