Wainwright Bagging – the Northern Fells

Lake District

Code: DBWBC

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Activity types:

  • High Mountains
  • Newly Refurbished

Level

  • Challenger
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

From £779.00 - 7 nights

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Prices are per person

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Holiday overview

New at HF Holidays

Alfred Wainwright’s Pictorial Guides have provided the inspiration for many a fell walker, with over two million copies of the books selling since their publication. There are 214 fells described within his books and this holiday takes in all of the fells he enthuses about in his Northern Fells pictorial guide, in one fabulous, challenging holiday.

Holiday highlights

  • Follow in the footsteps of Alfred Wainwright exploring some of his favourite fells
  • Bag all of the summits in his Northern Fells Pictorial Guide
  • Enjoy challenging walking with wonderful views and a great sense of achievement

Great reasons to join us

  • Great value: all prices include Full Board en-suite accommodation, a full programme of walks with all transport to and from the walks, and evening activities
  • Great walking: enjoy the challenge of bagging all of the summits in Wainwright’s Northern Fells pictorial guide, accompanied by an experienced leader
  • Accommodation: enjoy a lakeside location just two miles from Keswick, with fantastic views of the surrounding fells

Accommodation

Freswater Bay refurbished for 2016

 

With the best waterfront of any hotel on Derwent Water, and splendid views of the surrounding fells, Derwent Bank offers a truly exceptional location.

 Green Tourism logo4-star Visit Britain Guest Accommodation

Bedrooms

Derwent Bank has 32 bedrooms in the main building, plus 5 double bedded chalets in the gardens. Some of the rooms have views over the lake, whilst others face towards the mountains of Cat Bells and Grizedale Pike. In addition, in the grounds there is the refurbished Coach House, a luxurious two bedroom apartment.

Classic bedrooms at Derwent Bank

Classic bedrooms – included in your holiday price

Comfortable accommodation with an en-suite bathroom, with either a bath or shower. Single rooms are available for an extra £8 per night. 

Premium Rooms at Derwent Bank

Premium bedrooms – from an extra £5 per person per night

Enjoy extra space or exceptional views, plus additional facilities including a towelling robe and complimentary slippers when you upgrade.

Family Room at Derwent Bank

Family bedrooms 

We have a selection of 3 and 4-bedded rooms. These have all the facilities of our classic rooms plus full sized twin or double beds for adults and bunk beds or occasional beds for children.

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Facilities

All our Country Houses are tailored to walkers and outdoor enthusiasts and have excellent boot and drying rooms and laundry facilities.

At Derwent Bank there is a large, comfortable lounge, an attractive dining room and a welcoming bar stocking local beer. The conservatory is particularly attractive and has superb views of the lake and the surrounding fells. Free WiFi is available in some public rooms. There is also a range of board games and books.

The house sits in extensive gardens with a sloping lawn down to the lake jetty. Outside there is a formal garden, a putting green and croquet lawn.

Also Derwent Bank has a Dandelion café with comfortable chairs, delectable local produce and a great cup of tea or coffee, making a fantastic place to relax, enjoy and unwind overlooking Derwent Water.

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Food

All holidays at our Country Houses are Full Board with all meals included, from dinner on arrival to breakfast on the day of your departure.

Breakfast at Derwent Bank

Breakfast:

The most important meal of the day. Choose from a wide selection on the cold buffet and/or a full cooked breakfast. You could choose fruit and yoghurt followed by scrambled egg, porridge followed by a full English breakfast, or anything in between.

Picnic lunch at Derwent Bank

Lunch:

Our famous self-select picnic lunches keep you going on a day outdoors. Your own choice of sandwiches is prepared to order, and you can add crisps and snacks, fruit, nuts, chocolate bars, sweets and biscuits as you wish. Our house-based Leisure Activities include an in-house lunch (typically soup, sandwiches etc).

Dinner at Derwent Bank

Dinner:

The relaxed, sociable dinner is a highlight of any stay at our Country Houses. With tables seating up to 10 and no seating plan, it offers a great opportunity to get to know your fellow guests. There is always a choice of dishes for every course, featuring classic British cooking and local specialities. A vegetarian option is always available.

The bar at Derwent Bank

Bar:

All of our Country Houses have a well-stocked bar serving local beers, wine and spirits.

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Evening

After your day’s walk or activity, your evenings are free for you to enjoy however you want. If you would like to continue interacting with our guides and fellow guests we often have extra activities available. Plus you always have the option to just relax in the bar.

Social activities:

Enjoy a glass of wine or local beer in the bar before a talk about the next day's walks. After dinner there will be an activity or entertainment which you will be welcome to join. These vary from week to week but could include a talk on wildlife or the island’s rich history from a local speaker or a team quiz.

Leisure Activities:

Many of our Leisure Activities holidays continue into the evening with programmed sessions. Other holidays will have the evenings free, and you will be welcome to join in other social activities that may be happening in the house.

Family holidays:

Our activity leaders are on hand to organise children’s activities and games for younger children before dinner. These could include rounders, outdoor games, or crafts. After dinner there are further activities for the whole family.

Self-Guided Walking:

There may be evening social activities happening in the house during your holiday, and you will be most welcome to join in. However, not all self-guided holidays will have evening activities available – if these are important to you, please check before booking.

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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 from stairs. We do have 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.

Arrival & car parking facilities

Designated disabled parking bays are available directly in front of the house. The surface of the main car park is graveled with a slight slope. If you need assistance with your luggage, please just ask a member of the team. To gain access to the main building, there are three steps. Once you are, all public rooms are on the same level.

Wheelchair accessibility

Once you have gain access to the house, all public rooms are accessible for wheelchairs. Our bedrooms in the main house aren’t accessible as they are on the first and second floors. If you require a wheelchair friendly room, we recommend our chalets which are situated in the grounds. 

More details on Derwent Bank accessibility ›

Additional information

  • Fire procedure is displayed in each room and explained to guests on arrival. Guests requiring assistance at an evacuation are identified at this time and door hanger cards are issued
  • Mobile phone reception is generally good from the main building
  • Assistance dogs accompanying visually or hearing impaired guests 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 can be supplied

Itinerary

This itinerary may be subject to change, depending on walking conditions during the week. Please note this is a challenging week of fell walking, best suited to experienced fell walkers.

Friday: Arrival day

Time to settle in at Derwent Bank and discuss the week’s programme.

Saturday: Skiddaw via Ullock Pike 

Today’s challenge takes in five of the Wainwrights. After a short coach ride we begin our walk via Ullock Pike, and towards the summit of Skiddaw - the highest of the Wainwright’s in the Northern Fells pictorial guide. From there we continue, bagging Long Side, Carl Side, and Skiddaw itself. We descend taking in Bakestall, before dropping down to Bassethwaite village, and a well earned break. 5 Wainwrights; 10.4 miles (16.6 km) with 3,130ft (95 m) of ascent.

Sunday: Carrock Fell, High Pike and Knott

Our walk explores the quieter side of the Lake District and the most northerly of the Wainwrights. Our first summit is Carrock Fell from where we continue along the ridge to High Pike to enjoy the best views into Scotland from the Northern Fells. We retrace our steps briefly, and take in Knott and Great Calva before descending into the River Caldew valley to return past Carrock Mine to Mosedale, where we meet our coach back to Derwent Bank. 5 Wainwrights; 13.7 miles (21.9 km) with 2,510ft (765m) of ascent.

Monday: Free Day

Explore the local area of Keswick and Borrowdale or take a well-earned break to enjoy the facilities at Derwent Bank, perhaps reading about ascending mountains.

Tuesday: Blencathra and the Glenderamackin Skyline

We return to Mosedale this morning and continue our journey. Our first summit of the day is Bowscale Fell via Bowscale Tarn, and then we follow the ridgeline to Bannerdale Crags, Mungrisedale Common, and the iconic peak of Blencathra. Our descent takes us onto Souther Fell and down to Mungrisedale village. 5 Wainwrights; 10.7 miles (17.1 km) with 2,920ft (892 m) of ascent.

Wednesday: Uldale Fells

On the northern edge of the Lake District, our first fell today is Binsey. We then walk via Over Water and Orthwaite to climb Great Cockup, Meal Fell and Great Sca Fell. Our descent takes in Brae Fell and Longlands Fell before we head back. This is the quietest, lowest and least rugged part of the Northern Fells range. 6 Wainwights (only one over 2,000ft); 11 miles (17.6 km) with 2,885ft (881m) of ascent.

Thursday: Keswick Skyline

Our first fell stands proud above Keswick's skyline – Latrigg. After admiring the views from the top, we continue along the Cumbria Way into the Glenderaterra Valley to ascend Lonscale Fell. Our route takes us next onto Skiddaw Little Man, Broad End, Carl Side and on to Dodd. We take the Keswick launch back to Derwent Bank smug with the knowledge that we’ve ticked off all of Wainwright’s favourite Northern Fells, and ready for a little celebration. 4 Wainwrights; 13.5 miles (21.5 km) with 3,395 ft (1,037 m) of ascent.

Friday: Depart after breakfast.

Local area

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:

Derwentwater 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

Theatre 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

Grasmere
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

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

Ullswater
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

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

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

How to get to us by train

By train:

The nearest train station is Penrith. 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).

Use an HF transfer

HF station transfer:

We offer a reduced price taxi transfer between Penrith railway station and Derwent Bank every Friday and Monday. 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 only costs £10 per person, 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. Taxis cost approx £30 per journey (if pre- booked; taxis at Penrith station can be considerably more expensive). Every year we negotiate a pre-booked rate for these journeys. 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.

Driving to us

By car:

From Penrith - take the A66 past Keswick towards Cockermouth. One mile beyond the roundabout to Keswick and 200yds beyond the B5289 turning to Keswick, turn left off of the A66 signposted to Portinscale, Grange and the Newlands Valley. Derwent Bank (not Derwentwater Hotel) is approx half a mile along this road on the left after the Derwentwater Marina and before the Nichol End Marina. Look out for our sign.

From Kendal - take the A591 to Keswick. To avoid the town centre turn right following signs to the A66 and Cockermouth, then follow the directions as above.

Leaders

Andrew Bell

Andrew has been a mountain leader for HF Holidays since 1969 but admits to a forty-year gap in the middle! He has led numerous guided walking holidays in the mountains of Britain and has completed all the Lakeland Wainwrights from his base in Penrith, Cumbria. He’s now retired, but he worked for the Geological Surveys of Britain and Ireland and lectured geology at the Open University and Galway University. Most recently he ran a small enterprise leading geological tours in Britain and Ireland for individuals just like ourselves. When not leading for HF Holidays, he enjoys walking, orienteering, mountain biking, and long-distance cycling. In the spring of 2015 he cycled solo from Land’s End to John O'Groats.

Reviews

Date & Rating Customer Review HF Holidays says
12 Jul 2016, 10:07 a.m.

Service rating:

++

Product rating:

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Service review:

Seemed well organised.

Product review:

The walks leader was very knowledgeable about all aspects of the walks, there seemed to be no fell or tarn for which he did not know the name! He was sensitive and diplomatic in dealing with the group. I found the downstairs area of the hotel to be very cold as the front doors were kept open much of the time.
11 Jul 2016, 10:07 a.m.

Service rating:

++

Product rating:

++

Service review:

A well-arranged, enjoyable week arranged by the company

Product review:

A really good week's walking amid great company

Dates & Prices

Date Description Nights Brochure price Buy today for Book
15 Sep 2017 DBWBC - Wainwright Bagging - The Northern Fells - Derwent 7 £819.00 £779.00 Early Booking Offer Save- £40 off pp Book Now

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