The Lake District is the only real mountain region in England, and is home to some of the most spectacular scenery in the country. For lovers of the outdoors, the British Lake District is a hidden treasure, brimming with slate clad hillsides, rugged fells and crystal clear tarns. Criss-crossed as it is with winding country roads, it is more than possible to see the entire district by car in a long weekend, but the best way to enjoy what the Lake District has to offer is to get out of the car and immerse yourself in the great outdoors. Make the most of your visit to England’s largest National Park.
Go Prepared – Whether you intend to hike up Scafell Pike, the region’s highest peak, or take to the waters of Wastewater, the deepest of The Lakes, being prepared for the notoriously temperamental British weather is a must. Even if you are not intending to camp, making the most instead of the plethora of cosy cottage dotted across the area, the wrong equipment could ruin your stay. Make sure you have high quality waterproofs that are lightweight and breathable – check out places like Outdoor Look baselayers for insulation against the elements and for clothing that is multi-purpose and works whatever the weather. Get the right footwear; this might not be the Himalayas but the landscape is rife with slate, which is heavy under-foot, and without supportive and well soled boots, still treacherous. Get hold of an official checklist and make sure you are properly equipped
Know Your Limits – The Lakes have enough trails and activities that there is something for every level of ability. Do not push yourself to take on trails that you are not experienced enough to hike. Many of the harder walks in the region are suitable only for seasoned hikers with good fitness levels; if you are not used to hard walking over rough or steep terrains, stick to the easier trails such as Gowbarrow Fell with its multiple waterfalls, woodland and low fells. Compromising on difficulty does not mean missing out on spectacular views, and taking on more than you are prepared for will only result in injury and possibly a truncated stay. Read up on trails and routes before you arrive, and plan your visit. Even the smaller hotels in the area will have printed information about trails and sights, but you will discover far more if you research trails online instead of relying on tourist brochures.