The shores of Thirlmere

  • Explore the shoreline of Thirlmere
  • Some interesting waterfalls on the slopes of Great Dodd
  • Views over St John’s in the Vale

Walking in Thirlmere is not usually high on the agenda of a visitor to the Lake District. The unremittingly steep slopes of the Helvellyn ridge and the bleak and usually boggy moorlands to the west sandwiching an artificially raised reservoir does not make for an attractive prospect. However there is a lovely walk which I discovered whilst on a navigation day (thanks Stephen) that follows an excellent track on the open fellside above the famous pub at Thirlspot before returning via the wooded shoreline of Thirlmere . The views are excellent with the panorama of Skiddaw and Blencathra beautifully presented over St John’s in the Vale whilst the section through the woods offers glimpses across the lake and a particularly fine picnic spot on a small pebble beach.

Recommend: Do not swim in Thirlmere, I rarely give warnings as I believe people should take responsibility for their actions but in this case I am.

Download GPX file

Thirlmere map

All maps are copyright of Where2Walk ©2018

OS Map: O/S 1.25,000. OL5 The English Lakes North East Buy Map
Start Point: NY 316168. The United Utilities car park to the east of the road is the best place to start, cross the wooden bridge and through the gate and turn left before the path heads for Helvellyn
Height to Climb: 206 ms (676 feet)
Terrain: Good paths throughout the walk
Eating & Drinking: There may be an ice cream van near the finish but the Inn at Thirlspot is the only place in Thirlmere to enjoy a drink or a meal.
Similar Walks Nearby: High Rigg overlooking St John’s in the Vale
A walk above Threlkeld
Bowscale Tarn & Bannerdale Crags
Places to Stay:


  1. michael birney says:

    The path from wyburn church to Thirlspot car park has been closed all year and continues to be so, due to logging operations.Your picture of the area is a bit misleading with the pub shown before the end of the mere.That particular piece of road is narrow and winding full of traffic and very dangerous to walk along.Having said that I have had a scout around your site and as a Cumbrian fell walker and closing in on my fifth 214 Wainwright completion I am very impressed with your site.I have sent this second reply as I realised I put wythop instead of wyburn.I blame that Mr Wainwright for getting me mixed up, with all this walking all around my beloved county.Psalm 121.[the Cumbrian motto].

  2. michael birney says:

    the path wythop to thirlspot has been closed all year and continues to be so due to logging operations,your pub sign is in the wrong place.Very good site.

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