High Dam, starting from Finsthwaite is a fantastic and beautiful family walk. Approx 3.5km “lollipop” route from the road in Finsthwaite up to the Dam, round the lake and back again. It isn’t suitable for pushchairs, but is well worth carrying the little ones so they can enjoy the quiet lake shores too!
There is an official car park at the start of the walk (£1.30 – 1 hour, £2.20 – 2 hours, £4 – 4 hours, £5.50 – 9 hours) or free parking on the road in Finsthwaite, grid reference 366881 on OS map OL7.
The path is easy and obvious, all the way up to the dam and around the lake. There are plenty of things to see and do… Our kids loved climbing trees, swinging from them over the stream, scrambling on the rocks, watching beetles and earwigs, collecting sticks and stones, seeing fish in the water and paddling.
Our highlight was taking our shoes and socks off and splashing around in the water just below the dam. We built our very own rock dam and channel. My eldest actually said “I love it here, I want to stay all day mummy!” Then he asked if we could come back here on our holidays!! We were there 3 leisurely and enjoyable hours!
After our walk we headed to Rusland Pool Hotel on the A591, just past Haverthwaite. It’s a great little place, with outdoor seating, a good kids entertainment pack and a small outside playground. Additionally the menu has over 45 egg, gluten and lactose free meals and desserts. We were tempted by their “super burger challenge” (see photos) but opted for the Sunday Roast instead! Great service and a lovely family friendly place.
As we drove home to Bowness-on-Windermere, we passed Fell Foot Park, and the hundreds of people and cars that were all over the place. It reminded us how much we love finding these types of walks, where it’s so beautiful and so (relatively!) quiet!
June 2018 edit: we did this walk again today, but now our children are a bit older (6 & 4), we extended the route into a circular walk as follows:
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