The Old Man Of Coniston (803m)

Group: Take a Hike

Saturday 18 February, 2017
8.5 miles

The Old Man Of Coniston (803m) is sometimes known by the alternative name of Coniston Old Man, or simply The Old Man.

The views are excellent and extensive on a clear day, including much of the southern Lake District, Morecambe Bay, Blackpool Tower, the Pennines, the Lancashire coast and the Isle of Man.

The mountain is popular with fell-walkers with a number of well-marked paths to the summit. This has resulted in the resident sheep becoming quite tame, showing no fear and rifling into unwatched rucksacks for food.

Starting almost at sea level from Coniston we will ascend via Walna Scar Road to Brown Pike (682m), then head north over Buck Pike (744m) and Dow Crag (778m), followed by a short drop to the saddle Goat Hawes (649m) where there are some crags which provide some protection for a nice rest stop before a last push to the summit at The Old Man Of Coniston (803m) for lunch. Then descend east past waterfalls and ancient abandoned mine workings (some of which are over 800 years old). There are various options to extend this walk on the summit should time and people allow.

This route is not technical but is rated strenuous, high, remote and cold! Yet it is fantastic and well within most walkers’ ability.

We really welcome beginners, we will support you and we don’t expect you to rush first time. We were all newbies once and it is an honour to help guide someone on their first winter mountain walk.

If you are young, healthy, got a positive mental attitude and do some practice walks, running or cycling and bring the proper equipment, food, extra food and snacks you should be ok and will improve very quickly.

However, if you have underlying health issues or make no effort to prepare whatsoever you risk spoiling your enjoyment and that of the whole group.

Sleeping over is highly recommended due to the remote location. See the diary for the St Valentine’s weekend away. If you are coming just for the day then please let the walk leader know at least a few days beforehand because winter plans sometimes need to change.

Meet 9:00am and start walking at 9:15am prompt.

Address: YHA Coniston Holly How, Far End, Coniston, Cumbria, LA21 8DD

See Map:

Distance: 8.5 miles

Walk grade: Hard

Winter walking is great fun if you come dressed properly and your boots can grip the ice. The weather can be very different between the start and the summit, and can change quickly and dramatically over the course of the day.

Recommended kit:-
Fully charged head LED torch (not hand held).
Food, snacks and extra food.
Waterproof walking boots.
Waterproof jacket with hood + wooly hat.
Waterproof trousers.
Thick warm waterproof ski type gloves/mits + spares.
Walking poles + boot ice spikes (like Microspike chains)
Buffs are very versatile as neck scarfs & balaclavas.

starting point
YHA Coniston Holly How, Far End, Coniston, Cumbria, LA21 8DD
starting grid reference
post code
LA21 8DD

Start point

YHA Coniston Holly How, Far End, Coniston, Cumbria, LA21 8DD

54.37387, -3.075173

Mike Ramplin
Take a Hike
National Park
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