The Fairfield Horseshoe Walking Route is one of our favourite Lake District trails choice for hiking multiple summits in one loop, on top of the stunning views over Windermere, Rydal Water, Grasmere and beyond.
Distance 10.2 miles
Time 5 hours (walking)
Total Ascent 3,347ft
Summits Nab Scar, Heron Pike, Rydal Fell, Great Rigg, Fairfield, Hart Crag, Dove Crag, High Pike, Low Pike
Views Rydal Water, Grasmere, Windermere, Grisedale Tarn, Thirlmere, Brothers Water
1. The initial ascent from Rydal Hall is roughly 4 miles of steady climb, with well maintained clear trail paths. Navigation all the way to Fairfield summit is straightforward, with the Grizedale Tarn valley on the left and Rydal Fells on the right.
2. Fairfield summit is one we always aim to spend time on, as the 360 degree views are quite staggering on the right day. The multiple stone circles are good for finding a spot out of the wind, but it is a reasonably popular place for a break.
3. The third quarter of the loop, from Fairfield to Dove Crag, is littered with boulders to play on and a breathtaking view back over the ascent route.
4. Descending High Pike and Low Pike around sunset time means the waves of hills and fells are kissed by golden sunlight all the way to Windermere lake. Navigation is simple in any weather because there’s a great big wall leading all the way down to Ambleside.