Herdwick Trail

Guided Trail

Code: DBLHF

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Activity types:

  • High Mountains
  • Newly Refurbished

Level

  • Medium
More information

Difficulty indicator

Difficulty is measured on many factors such as distance, ascent/descent, terrain, weather and more. There's no magic formula, but from our experience we use yellow for easy, orange for medium and red for hard. Challenger holidays require a high level of fitness and stamina.

More about difficulty levels

Holiday overview

The Herdwick Trail is a short break for those who enjoy walking in the Lake District at a predominantly low-level.

The trail starts from the eastern edge of the National Park and passes through some of the better less well known parts of The Lakes to finish at Great Langdale in the heart of the Lake District. 

Join us as we lead you on this trail through this breath-taking landscape.

In pictures...

Accommodation

Enjoy beautiful views over Derwent Water and the surrounding fells from this stunning property on the shores of the lake itself. 

Choose your room

Classic bedrooms at Derwent BankPremium Rooms at Derwent BankFamily Room at Derwent Bank4-star Visit Britain Guest AccommodationGreen Tourism logo
Classic Rooms
• Check in from 2:30pm
• Comfortable accommodation
• En-suite bathroom with either bath or shower
• Large double or two single beds • Sole occupancy available for an extra £15 per night
Premium Rooms
• Check in from 1:30pm
• Enjoy extra space or exceptional views
• Toweling robe Comfortable slippers TV, DVD and safe Hairdryer
• Available from an extra £10 per person per night
Family Rooms
• Check in from 2:30pm
• 3 or 4 beds
• These have all the facilities of our classic rooms plus full sized twin or double beds for adults and bunk or occasional beds for children
 

Facilities

• Welcoming bar with local beer
• Conservatory with superb views
• Extensive gardens
• Lake jetty
• Formal Garden
• Putting green
• Croquet lawn
• Boot Room
• Drying room
• Laundry facilities
• Free WiFi in some public rooms
• Large, comfortable lounge
• Attractive dining room
• Board games and books
And our favourite
Dandelion cafe with
comfortable chairs,
delicious local produce and
a great cup of tea of coffee

Dining

All holidays at our Country Houses are full board with breakfast, picnic lunch and evening meal. All of our Country Houses have a well-stocked bar serving local beers, wine and spirits.

Start your day with our extensive breakfast.
 Take your fill from our famous self service picnic lunches
A relaxed social dinner is a highlight of any stay at our Country Houses

Dinner at Derwent Bank

Your evenings

Two guests enjoying a drink

Just relax and take it easy, or if you'd like to continue to chat with our guides and fellow guests then why not grab a drink or take part in one of our option evening activities.

All of our bars are stocked with locally sourced drinks so you can really soak up your surroundings.

Accessibility

Due to the layout and age of Derwent Bank, bedrooms within the main house are not accessible for wheelchair users, with all accommodation being reached by stairs. We do have some chalets in the grounds which are on the ground floor which can be used for wheelchair users, however mobility will be restricted in the room. Once you have gained access to the house all public rooms are accessible for wheelchairs.

More details on Derwent Bank accessibilty

Additional information

  • The fire procedure is displayed in each room and explained to guests on arrival. Guests requiring assistance during an evacuation should identify themselves on arrival
  • Mobile phone reception is generally good in the main building
  • Assistance dogs accompanying a visually or hearing impaired guest are welcome. Dogs must be kept on a lead or harness at all times
  • Information can be provided in large print
  • Staff have received disability awareness training
  • Special diets can be catered for. Specialist food can be obtained with prior notice
  • Fridge for medication is provided

Holiday Overview

Holiday highlights:

  • Wonderful views of the eastern fells from little-known Knipe Scar
  • Explore the stone circles and Neolithic remains of Barton Fell
  • Visit a mountain rescue base and herdwick sheep farm
  • A classic through route from the eastern Lakes to the heart of the high fells
  • Discover the Victorian gardens and woodlands of High Close

Prices include:

  • 4 nights' Full Board, en-suite accommodation
  • The services of an experienced HF Holidays’ trails leader
  • All transport on walking days

Holiday itinerary

Planned itinerary

Penrith to Howtown

We start south of Penrith and head west to gently ascend the little known Knipe Scar with its panoramic views of Mardale (Haweswater), Swindale and the Lowther Valley. We cross the River Lowther over a small suspension bridge to the lovely hamlet of Butterwick and up to Askham Fell with its many prehistoric cairns, burial mounds and stone circles. We then head roughly south with lovely views of Ullswater below us. (Wordsworth said of Ullswater, “It is the happiest combination of beauty and grandeur which any of the lakes affords”).  From Howtown pier on the east shore of Ullswater we take the ferry to Glenridding. 9½ miles (15km), with 1,250 feet (380m) of ascent

Patterdale to Ambleside

We start from Patterdale to the south of Ullswater, following a good track to Hartsop.  On the way we may visit a Herdwick sheep farm to see some of the famous Herdwick sheep.  From Hartsop we pass Brothers Water then climb steadily to Scandale pass at the heart of the Lake District fells before we descend to the bustling town of Ambleside. 9 miles (14.5km) with 1,800 feet (540m) of ascent

Ambleside to Great Langdale

We start with a visit to Ambleside Mountain Rescue Centre, and then walk through Ambleside and along a good track to Rydal where Wordsworth lived at Rydal Mount for most of his life.  We head to Rydal Water and gently ascend to the lovely Loughrigg Terrace with its beautiful views over Grasmere and beyond and visit the impressive Rydal Caves.  We ascend Loughrigg itself (height 1,099 feet, 335m) to enjoy panoramic views over the south of The Lake District.  We head for the lovely gardens of High Close then down to the village of Elterwater.  A short walk to Chapel Stile at the start of Great Langdale and then up the dale to the Old Dungeon Ghyll with the imposing Langdale Pikes in full view brings us to the end of our holiday. 9.5 miles (15 km), with 1,950 feet (585m) of ascent.

The itinerary may be subject to change at the discretion of the leader with regard to the weather and other external factors 

Local area

Discover the Lake District

The Lake District is England’s premier national park with outstanding mountain scenery.

Keswick
The nearest town is Keswick, about two miles away. As a popular tourist destination it has a range of facilities including supermarkets, banks, a post office, pubs and cafés. It is also well known for its huge number of outdoor shops where you can buy an array of clothing and equipment for the outdoors.

During your visit to Derwent Bank you may enjoy visiting the following places of interest:

Derwent Water ferryDerwentwater Launch
Take a leisurely journey around Derwentwater on the ferry - a great way to see the surrounding mountains from a different perspective. The nearest stop at Nichol End is just a few minutes’ walk from Derwent Bank. www.keswick-launch.co.uk

 

  

Outside of the theater by the lakeTheatre by the Lake
Situated by the lakeshore in Keswick, the theatre offers an excellent repertoire of plays in the main house and smaller studio theatre. The theatre’s popularity means that advance booking is recommended, especially in the high season. www.theatrebythelake.com

 

 

Honister Slate Mine
Go underground on the mine tour at this famous Lake District mine which is situated at the top of Honister Pass between Borrowdale and Buttermere. Here you can travel underground and learn about the history of Lake District slate production. Honister is around 30 minutes' drive from Derwent Bank, and can also be reached directly using the Honister Rambler bus. www.honister.com

Whinlatter Forest & Go Ape!
Relax at the visitors centre and cafe, or follow the excellent new mountain bike trail; one of the best in Britain. The high-ropes Go Ape course is great option for active teenagers. www.forestry.gov.uk/whinlatter or www.goape.co.uk

Derwent Water Marina
Hire a canoe or sailing boat and enjoy one of England’s most beautiful lakes. Just five minutes’ walk from Derwent Bank. www.derwentwatermarina.co.uk

Dove Cottage, home to William WordsworthGrasmere
Grasmere is about 30 minutes’ drive from Derwent Bank and is famous with its connections with William Wordsworth. The poet’s homes at Dove Cottage and Rydal Mount can be visited, the former of which includes the Wordsworth Museum. Wordsworth’s birthplace can also be visited in Cockermouth; a pleasant market town to the north-west of Derwent Bank. Both Grasmere and Cockermouth can be reached by local bus from Keswick. www.wordsworth.org.uk

Steamer ferry on Ullswater lakeUllswater
About 30 minutes’ drive from Derwent Bank is Ullswater, arguably the most beautiful of the Cumbrian lakes. Enjoy its glorious scenery either on foot or by steamer. If you are visiting the Ullswater area you could also visit the superb waterfall of Aira Force or the country house and gardens at Dalemain. www.ullswater-steamers.co.uk or www.dalemain.com

 

Lake District Wildlife Park
Well worth a visit for the whole family. You can watch the antics of the otters, apes and monkeys and marvel at the flying displays of eagles and vultures. www.lakedistrictwildlifepark.co.uk

Carlisle
Carlisle, about 45 minutes from Derwent Bank is the historic county town of Cumbria. Here you’ll find a good selection of shops, the cathedral, and castle. Of particular interest is the Tullie House Museum which is recognised for its exciting, varied events and exhibitions programme and is full of exciting interactive displays. www.tulliehouse.co.uk

Travel

Travel to Derwentwater

Our address is: Derwent Bank, Portinscale, Nr Keswick, Cumbria CA12 5TY

How to get to us by train

By train:

The nearest train station is at Penrith on the main line between London and Glasgow. For train times and general rail enquiries visit www.nationalrail.co.uk or call 03457 484950 (from outside the UK call +44 20 7278 5240).

Pendolino train at speed 

Use an HF transfer

HF station transfer - great value!

Our station transfer operates every Friday and Monday between Penrith station and Derwent Bank. The pickup is at 4.50pm from Penrith railway station. On departure day the transfer will get you back to Penrith station by 9.50am. This transfer costs just £10 return, however a place must be reserved in advance by calling 0345 470 7558.

 

Get to us by Taxi

By taxi:

If you can’t meet our station transfer, the 20 mile journey from Penrith to Derwent Bank can be made by taxi. Pre-booked taxis cost approx £30 per journey (or around £50 if not pre-booked). Details of our current recommended taxi company and rates will be sent to you with your booking. The return taxi journey can be arranged on your behalf by the Derwent Bank Manager.

 

Bus

By bus:

The X5 bus runs approxiately every hour from Penrith station. The nearest bus stop is on the A66, about ¾ mile walk from Derwent Bank. Alight at the Portinscale bus stop and take the road on the left (signposted to Portinscale, Grange and the Newlands Valley). Follow this road through Portinscale village - Derwent Bank is on the left-hand side after the Derwentwater Marina. For bus times see www.traveline.info

Bus in Keswick

Driving to us

 By car:

From Penrith - leave the M6 motorway at junction 40 and take the A66 towards Keswick. After 17 miles you'll reach a roundabout in Keswick - continue ahead following signs to Cockermouth and Workington. One mile beyond the roundabout, and 200yds beyond the B5289 turning to Keswick, turn left off off the A66 signposted to Portinscale, Grange and the Newlands Valley. Derwent Bank is approx ¾ mile along this road on the left after the Derwentwater Marina and before the Nichol End Marina. There is a large car park available at Derwent Bank.

 

Reviews

Date & Rating Customer Review HF Holidays says
25 Oct 2016, 9:12 a.m.

Service rating:

++

Product rating:

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Service review:

Very efficient service and interesting walking holidays in various parts of the country.

Product review:

I did the Herdwick Trail walk which unfortunately is being discontinued due to lack of demand.
24 Oct 2016, 8:49 a.m.

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Service review:

No review provided

Product review:

Can't fault them.
24 Oct 2016, 7:24 a.m.

Service rating:

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Service review:

Excellent accommodation, walking and good company.

Product review:

Really interesting mix of visits to a Herdwick sheep farm, Mountain Rescue Centre and linear trail hill walking. I liked walking in a smaller group with a common purpose.
23 May 2016, 11:18 a.m.

Service rating:

+

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Service review:

Excellent, but not exactly cheap, therefore 'good'

Product review:

All staff encountered on the holiday were excellent, as was the experience. Caveat: I had no issue with the daily mileages being longer than advertised; others might disagree.
22 Sep 2015, 3:49 p.m.

Service rating:

-

Product rating:

+

Service review:

Joining papers not received until 4 days before holiday and then walk descriptions were on an A4 Photocopy.

Product review:

Very good leader and interesting trail although it could do with a tweak here and there.
Thank you for your feedback. I am sorry for the late and poor quality despatch. This will be investigated and improved.

Toni McNulty
Customer Relations Manager
HF Holidays
21 Sep 2015, 11:36 a.m.

Service rating:

+

Product rating:

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Service review:

Still an issue receiving holiday documentation only received it a few days before the holiday this issues seems to effect people you booked there holiday early in the year is there an issue transferring early booked holidays to the new system

Product review:

The Herdwick Way was an excellent idea for a trail short break
24 May 2015, 5:15 p.m.

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Service review:

well organised and friendly as usual

Product review:

Excellent short trail with interest added by visit to a Herdwick sheep farm and Ambleside Mountain rescue.
21 May 2015, 5:14 p.m.

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Product rating:

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Service review:

I like the format and the consistency of delivery.

Product review:

I have not done a trail before. This was only three days but was just what I wanted in terms of length, challenge, interest and good company.
21 May 2015, 8:48 a.m.

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+

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Service review:

Everything was very good except the lack of transparency over various hotel room option prices. I don't think anyone in our party paid the same. Deals on office via HF office varied as to who people spoke to!!

Product review:

Very good. Lovely leader - walks just to right length and severity, fun leader giving us just the right amount of info on places we visited.
29 Oct 2014, 8:15 p.m.

Service rating:

+

Product rating:

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Service review:

Great

Product review:

Super

Read more reviews from feefo

Dates & Prices

We're sorry, there are no dates available for this holiday at the moment. Please check out our other tours and breaks or call our team on 0345 470 8558 to be notified of new dates as soon as they become available.

Prices are per person

Information

  • Standard single room: (2016) £8 per night; (2017) no supplement
  • Premium single room: £15 per night (2017 only)
  • Premium twin/double room: (2016) £5 per person per night; (2017) £10 per person per night
  • Non-member associate fee: (2016) £5 per person; (2017) £10 per person

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