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Via Ferrata & Walking Weekend
NEW for 2021 This is what weekends are made for. A chance to be out in the great outdoors, making memories, and experiencing some of the finest adventure activities in dramatic and picturesque settings.
The Via Ferrata and Alfred Wainwrights favourite mountain, Haystacks, will provide a lot of enjoyment on this adventure weekend in the English lake District.
- Fully guided activity weekend in the Lake District
- Via Ferrata experience
- Walking in the footsteps of A. Wainwright
- Haystacks guided mountain walk
Accommodation for this trip is not included. For accommodation information and all essential trip information please click on the ‘Trip Notes’ tab.
Saturday – Walk Day in Buttermere
Grade 3 – Haystacks 8 miles (12.8km), with 2380 ft (725m) of ascent, and (optional) Rannerdale Knotts 3 miles (1.8km), with 895 ft (273m) of ascent
Saturday’s walk will follow in the footsteps of A. Wainwright as we walk what was his favourite Lakeland fell, Haystacks. The walk is a steady and rewarding ascent with views of Buttermere Lake and then as we near the summit of Haystacks the Lakeland skyline truly opens up. The view from Haystacks is exceptional with the massif of Great Gable clearly in the distance. The top of Haystacks holds a special place for many a Lakeland fell walker.
An optional circuit of Rannerdale Knotts will be available at the end of the Haystacks walk.
Sunday - Via Ferrata at Honister, (nr Borrowdale)
Today’s via ferrata will be an experience you will be re-telling for years to come. Via Ferrata is Italian for ‘Iron Way’ and the system has been used in the Alps for more than a century. Honister’s Via Ferrata Xtreme in the Lake District is an adventure climbing system that uses a permanently fixed cable for safety and protection up the rock face of the old miners’ route. You don’t have to be an experienced rock climber to enjoy the Via Ferrata, although you will experience the same thrills but in the knowledge that you are securely fastened at all times.
The weekend will finish between 1-2pm.
Accommodation is not included as part of this trip. If you require help with booking accommodation you may find the following link useful:
Booking.com and search for accommodation in Keswick if you plan to use the weekends complimentary transport. Alternatively, if you wish to travel to the activities using your own transport, you may prefer to stay closer to the daily activities which are based in Buttermere (Saturday) and Honister, nr Borrowdale (Sunday).
For the weekend, a complimentary shuttlebus will be available to transport participants who are staying in Keswick to the activities on Saturday & Sunday. There is no extra charge for this, it is included in the trip price.
If you prefer to use your own transport, the journey time from Keswick to each activity venue is approx. 30 mins each way. If you prefer to book accommodation in Buttermere or Borrowdale, the travel time will be considerably less.
Food & Drink
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.
The venue for the Via Ferrata does have a café where lunch items may be available to purchase once we’ve experienced the via ferrata.
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).
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 on any of the equipment requirements, please do not hesitate to ask.
Trip 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 activities will leave promptly at the stated time and due to the nature of scheduled trips, we are unable to provide refunds if unfortunately, you miss the departure time.
Keswick Shuttlebus option – please meet 9.00am in Keswick (full details will be provided with your booking confirmation).
Alternatively if you are using your own transport, we will meet at the Activity Venues at 9.30am Saturday & Sunday (full details will be provided with your booking confirmation).
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