THIS is a lovely walk through some of the Lake District’s finest scenery.
The whole route is on good tracks and paths but they might be muddy after rain.
The views are superb so make sure of time for pauses to enjoy them.
Park in a layby at the start of the track to Ullthwaite Bridge (grid ref 455013), where there is room for four cars parked neatly, so try to get there early.
There are several other small spaces before and after this layby but the Kentmere road is generally narrow.
To reach Ullthwaite Bridge leave Staveley by Browfoot Lane and cross Scroggs Bridge to continue, left, for the parking area.
1 Walk down the track and cross Ullthwaite Bridge, pausing to enjoy the River Kent hurrying below.
Carry on the reinforced way as it winds right and continues to pass Croft Head.
Just beyond take the signposted right turn to walk a wide track to the where Park Beck joins the Kent.
Go through a gate and wind round left to cross the footbridge close to the confluence. Stroll on along the fenced way to pass in front of Sawmill Cottage.
The track heads on beside the Kent and brings you to the ‘works’ on the map.
2 Follow the arrowed track as it passes between the buildings of the factory and then stroll on, out into the lovely countryside, with Kentmere Hall plantation to your left.
The good track is easy to walk and soon brings you well above the long slender Kentmere Tarn, named on the map but often not considered to merit the title.
However, on a sunny day it is a picturesque stretch of water, really a swelling of the River Kent.
In recent times it was dredged to obtain diatomous earth, which was processed at the ‘works’ down stream.
The Aerial Ropeway, mentioned on the map, no longer exists but once it carried the earth to the works.
Enjoy the glorious views of the fells.
3 Towards the head of the tarn, the track moves into deciduous woodland and through gaps in the trees you get your first view of Kentmere’s splendid church, on its eminence, with the houses of the
village nestling around it.
At a skewed cross of tracks, descend right to pass through a gate into pasture.
Follow the grassy way as it bears left and continues to a gate to the access road to Kentmere Hall.
Walk left and pause to look at the striking dwelling. In the 14th Century it was a defensive pele tower against the marauding Scots and the farm building was attached in the 16th Century.
Carry on along the track to cross Hall Beck and then begin your climb up the continuing way.
As you ascend enjoy the views. The track traverses the slopes of Kentmere Park and winds to Whiteside End.
4 Carry on the pleasing way, which soon begins to descend.
Remain on it until your way is crossed by a gate that carries two waymarks.
Beyond two tracks lead off. Take the track left, keeping the stream to your right.
The way then climbs steadily and easily. Cross the tree-lined small stream on large stepping stones.
Stride on the high-level track as it passes through rough pasture, with superb views in all directions.
Then the way drops gently to come to another narrow beck, with stepping stones to help you on your way.
Follow the gated way as it gradually descends to the valley.
5 Stride on between two fine houses and follow the track to where it winds left and crosses Ullthwaite Bridge.
Walk on up the valley road and back to the parking area.