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Twixmas Winter Walking Holiday 2019
We’re pleased to announce this year’s Twixmas Winter Walking holiday, based in Keswick in the Lake District, Cumbria, between 27-30 December 2019. With access to so many great Lakeland walks, Keswick offers one of the best locations for some memorable winter walking. One of the guided walks includes Blencathra, ‘the peoples mountain’, which offers a great day on the Lakeland fells.
Together with a variety of places in Keswick to eat and drink, and enjoy a social evening, don’t miss this year’s Lake District Twixmas winter walking holiday.
- Fully guided Christmas walking holiday
- Dramatic mountain landscapes
- 3 days of scenic guided walks
- Blencathra and Sharp Edge walk options
- Sociable evenings
Accommodation at YHA Keswick (Optional)
YHA Keswick, situated in a quiet area but within 5 minutes of Keswick town centre, offers an unbeatable location overlooking the River Greta and Fitz Park, with far reaching views to Latrigg and Skiddaw. YHA Keswick is a stunning, recently refurbished Lakeland hostel. The hostel also features a brand new Riverside Bar and Restaurant. Accommodation is for 3 nights, including breakfast, in shared male and shared female bunkrooms. Private rooms are subject to availability please contact us before booking.
If you prefer to find your own accommodation, please click on the ‘Trip Notes’ tab for alternative accommodation suggestions.
Friday – Welcome Evening
Guests can check in to YHA Keswick from 3pm and the holiday will start at 8.30pm with a welcome introduction at YHA Keswick. It’s a chance for everyone on the Twixmas walking holiday to meet and the Country Adventures tour leader will be on hand to answer any questions about the planned walks.
Saturday - Walk Day
A choice between a Grade 4 or Grade 3 guided walk is available today: –
Grade 4 walk – Blencathra & Sharp Edge 8 miles (12.6km), with 2558 ft (780m) of ascent
Grade 3 walk – Blencathra 7.5 miles (12km), with 2476 ft (755m) of ascent
Today’s Blencathra walk will include a Grade 4 walk option to reach the summit via Sharp Edge. This will involve some exposed sections on Sharp Edge, which is a famous grade 1 scrambling route, but offer those with a good head for heights the chance to reach the summit of Blencathra via an exhilarating and rewarding route.
There will also be a Grade 3 walk option to reach the top of Blencathra avoiding Sharp Edge but still offering a fantastic route to the summit with impressive panoramic vistas.
Both walks will start from the base of Blencathra (transport included to the start), and the walks will lead us back into Keswick.
In the evening, an optional social evening is planned in Keswick, where the group can meet up for a drink and enjoy an evening meal together.
Sunday - Walk Day
Grade 3 walk – Ullock Pike & Carl Side 7.5 miles (12km), with 2440 ft (744m) of ascent
Alfred Wainwright’s description of Ullock Pike – ‘This slender pyramid is one of the simplest yet finest mountain forms in Lakeland’. And indeed, Ullock Pike is a thoroughly enjoyable walk, a worthy alternative to nearby Skiddaw, taking in Longside Edge and the domed summit of Carl Side, all of which offers tremendous views of Keswick and hidden valleys.
For tonight’s social evening, Country Adventures will organise meeting up for drinks and an optional meal in Keswick.
Monday - Walk Day & Departure Day
Grade 2 – Friar’s Crag, Cat Gill & Walla Crag 5.7 miles (9.1km), with 1130 ft (344m) of ascent
Departure day. Check out is 10am but for anybody wishing to spend a little more time in the area there is an optional 3rd day of walking as we visit the scenic shore of Derwent Water before heading up through a hidden gem, Cat Gill, as we head up onto Walla Crag with unrivalled aerial views of the lake and surrounding mountain landscape.
The holiday finishes back in Keswick between 2-3pm.
The optional accommodation for the Twixmas winter walking holiday is YHA Keswick, Lake District. Rooms are shared male and shared female bunkrooms and the package includes 3 nights bed with breakfast.
If you require help with booking alternative accommodation you may find the following links useful:
HillCrest22 Superb Keswick guest house accommodation which we use for our holidays
Booking.com Search for accommodation in or near to Keswick, Cumbria
Food & Drink
Meals included during the holiday: All breakfasts (with YHA Keswick accommodation option).
For the walk(s) please bring with you a packed lunch and refreshments. Occasionally on some guided walks (Grade 1 to 2 walks) we may pass a country inn or tea room where if we have time we can call in, however having a packed lunch with you gives the group the freedom to have lunch wherever we are on the walking route. YHA Keswick has a well equipped self catering kitchen with fridges and storage space to enable you to store snacks and packed lunch items if you wish to prepare your own packed lunches. Alternatively, packed lunches for the walks can be purchased from the hostel (approx. £6.50) or from the local convenience stores in Keswick.
On Saturday & Sunday evening we will go and eat in the town of Keswick (optional extra) where there are several restaurants to choose from.
For guided walking tours that require transport from the meeting point to the start of the walk, we use a minibus or where necessary local transport. There is no extra charge for this, it is included in the tour price.
Our walks are by no means designed to be endurance tests where everyone sets off at a blistering pace. Far from it, it’s about a fine day in the hills in good company enjoying the best of fell walking with exceptional views but it is important to state that for everyone’s walking enjoyment walking does require a minimum level of fitness and stamina. Hill / Mountain walking experience is not essential as long as you have a reasonable level of fitness. For the higher level graded walks (i.e. Challenging Grade) it is advisable that you are someone who enjoys regular cardio exercise or have experience of mountain walking and have the stamina/ leg strength in order to be better prepared for longer sections of uphill & downhill walking associated with higher mountain treks.
Walking Grades Explained
Grade 1 (Leisurely) Normally 5-8 miles, may include gentle ascents and descents of up to a total 1100ft of ascent and similar descent over a day’s walk. Easier scenic walking at lower altitudes along paths and tracks.
Grade 2 (Moderate) Normally 6-10 miles on paths and tracks, between 800ft – 1700ft of total ascent and similar descent. Longer walks, on hills and moorland.
Grade 3 (Moderate Mountain) Normally ranging from 6-10 miles, between 1700ft – 2600ft of ascent, similar descent. Longer walks, over higher ground with possibly steeper ups and downs on paths and tracks.
Grade 4 (Challenging) Normally ranging from 8-13 miles, between 1500ft – 3000+ft of ascent, similar descent, over undulating mountain terrain, walking at higher levels with steep ups and downs. Suitable for people with a good level of fitness.
What you need to bring with you for the walks
- Good, comfortable walking boots with a cleated sole and good ankle support are essential.
- Waterproof jacket and over-trousers.
- Warm, dry walking clothing. Unsuitable clothing includes Jeans or cotton tracksuit bottoms and cotton t-shirts (cotton is a poor insulating fabric and when wet it takes a long time to dry, which can lead to a rapid loss of body heat as well as being uncomfortable).
- A number of thin layers are better than one thick/ heavy jumper. We suggest a fleece for extra warmth especially when we stop on the hills for lunch.
- Hat and gloves (even in summer – any wind chill on the mountain tops will lead to cooler temperatures).
- Sunglasses, sun cream.
- Hot or cold drinks (i.e. a minimum of 2 litres of water).
- Plenty of food and drink for lunch and snacks.
- A rucksack large enough to carry it all in (20-30 litres), ideally with a waterproof liner.
- Any medication you need.
- Thermos flask. We recommend bringing warm drinks with you, as even on sunny days it can occasionally feel cooler, especially on the summits of the higher-level mountain walks.
- Walking poles (if you use them).
- A towel if staying at YHA Keswick.
We want you to enjoy your time with Country Adventures and have the best possible adventure experience. Please be aware that if any participants are not properly equipped for the walk (i.e. with walking boots and waterproofs), at the guide’s discretion we reserve the right to not allow them on the walk for reasons of safety for both the individual and the group. If you need clarification any of the equipment requirements, please don’t hesitate to ask.
Tour Schedule & Activity Meeting Times
Please ensure you give yourself plenty of time to get to the meeting point at the required time. The transport for our day walks will leave promptly at the stated time and due to the nature of scheduled tours, we are unable to provide refunds if unfortunately, you miss the departure time.
Please meet at YHA Keswick, details will be included with your final booking confirmation.
Address: YHA Keswick, Station St, Keswick, Cumbria CA12 5LH
At Country Adventures we’re very proud that time after time our customers enjoy our walking weekends, holidays and adventure breaks. We thrive on customer feedback, it helps to ensure our trips continue to be the best they can be.
We don’t edit the reviews, the only thing we do is proofread them and alter any typos, where necessary, to ensure they are easy to read for everyone.
Good company and great guides
Sarah, Twixmas walking holiday 2019
Anne, Twixmas Walking Holiday 2019
Interesting walks, good company and well organised
Christine, Twixmas Walking Holiday 2018
A Great Experience
Sarah, Twixmas Walking Holiday 2018
Twixmas walking break
The thing that sets Country Adventures apart is the man, Joe, himself. His jovial personality and easy going chat makes for a great group dynamic and an enjoyable holiday.
All walks are properly organised with safety in mind. Bag meals supplied, evening socials, camaraderie with no pressure.
5 stars because i can’t think of anything at fault with this trip. Looking forward to the next adventure.
Great walks & scenery
Organised walking holiday