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    Aira Force & Gowbarrow Park Walk

    This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
    This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
    This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
    7.1 km
    This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
    406 m
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    Directions to Trailhead
    Aira Force & Gowbarrow Park Walk

    The Aira Force and Gowbarrow Park Walk is an awesome route in the Lake District that will take you to several waterfalls before climbing to the summit of Gowbarrow Fell. The trail passes through a beautiful stretch of forest and offers walkers the chance to visit Aira Force and High Force falls on the way to the vantage point atop the hill that provides scenic views across the Cumbria landscape. Make sure to arrive early, as the area is sure to become busy with both walkers and tourists.

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    Route Description for Aira Force & Gowbarrow Park Walk

    Initial portions of the Aira Force & Gowbarrow Park Walk are likely to be extremely busy due to the high volume of visitors walking from the car park to the viewpoint over the falls. If you want to secure parking and enjoy a bit more solitude on the beginning of your walk, make sure to arrive early. After passing these sections by, the trail does become a bit more rugged, so be sure to wear proper walking boots for this one.

    Although it may be a busy tourist destination, the Aira Force and High Force waterfalls are truly a beautiful sight that should not be missed. The trail heads through the forest along Aira Beck to visit the torrenting waters at each of these two sites before climbing up the rugged hillside for amazing views of the countryside. This is a fantastic Lake District walk that should certainly make it onto your to-do list.

    Setting out from the car park, follow the trail north for 0.16mi to pass through a gate and cross over the bridge spanning a stream. Shortly after the crossing, turn left at the junction and head through the tranquil forest for 0.3 km, where you will find a gated path on the right leading to Aira Force. After passing through the gate, keep left along the trail to reach the viewpoint overlooking the torrenting water of the falls.

    From here, make your way over the flowing waters of Aira Beck and turn left, gradually climbing uphill until you arrive at a fork in 53 m. Head left here, followed by another left at the next junction to begin your trek away from the crowds around the foot of Gowbarrow Fell. After 0.3 km, you will cross over a stile and pass by another charming waterfall along Aira Beck, the High Force falls. After taking in the sights, keep straight along the trail for a further 0.8 km, where you will come to a junction that will take you to the summit of the hill.

    Take the path on the right and keep left, as you begin the steep climb up the rugged terrain along the slopes of Gowbarrow Fell. After 1.0 km, you will arrive at the summit and be greeted by amazing views of the surrounding Lake District landscape, with the calm surface of Ullswater directly to the south.

    From the rocky summit lookout, follow the trail east to descend the hillside and arrive at the edge of Kirkstyle Gill. Once you have reached the junction, keep right and follow the trail south for 1.3 km, as it traverses the slopes of the hill and crosses over a series of streams. After arriving at a junction near a rocky outcrop with stunning views over the water, head right and follow the trail west along the hill to make your way back to the initial crossing over Aira Beck.

    Here, you will likely begin to notice the number of people along the trail increase, as you are once again in the vicinity of the falls. Keep left and cross over Aira Beck to return to that car park having completed the Aira Force and Gowbarrow Park Walk.

    Insider Hints for Aira Force & Gowbarrow Park Walk

    • Make sure to arrive early, as the areas around the car park and waterfalls can be extremely busy with visitors.
    • The trail can be a bit wet and muddy, especially in the winter/spring seasons.
    • Pop into the gift shop near the car park for a souvenir.

    Getting to the Aira Force & Gowbarrow Park Walk Trailhead

    To reach the car park for the Aira Force and Gowbarrow Park Walk from Stainton, head southeast on Snuff Mill Lane for 0.6 km and turn right onto the A592. After 13.0 km, you will find the car park on the right.

    Route Information

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    • Backcountry Campsites


    • Pets allowed

      Yes - On Leash

    • Family friendly


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