At the start of this summer we decided to set ourselves our very own hiking challenge #3peaksinaweek which we kicked off with Skiddaw, England’s 6th highest peak at 931-metres.
Note from the author: This article has been written by me from my travel experience. I may recommend & provide links to products & services that I have used & may make commission from such links. This commission helps cover the costs of running this website & will be at no extra cost to you. Anything that I recommend is from my personal experience & belief that it is worth using. Happy reading!
As well as taking on this challenge ourselves, we’ve invited anyone who would like to join us in getting to the top of their very own three peaks in a week, all to raise awareness for mental health – we truly believe that getting outside & connecting with nature is one of the very best things for your soul.
We put it to the poll across our social media channels & as voted by our awesome followers, headed up to the UK’s stunning Lake District to start off our challenge.
Skiddaw Hike – Three Peaks Challenge
Our Starting Point
Heading towards the picturesque little town of Keswick we turned off towards the little village of Millbeck to find a spot to park up at for the night, as our first peak was to also include a night of wild camping. There’s an option to park at Millbeck’s village hall for the fee of £3 (honesty box in the car park for payments) or to drive up the road a little where there a couple of spaces literally at the foot of the trail head. We parked up, grabbed all of our gear & set off early afternoon.
Millbeck made for a peaceful starting point with hardly any other people around & we happily made our way onto the “Skiddaw Footpath”, up through the surrounded farmland & onto the trail.
We took the steep & winding path up the Doups all the way to the peak of Carl Side, the first 1.5 mile / 2.5 km stretch, whilst stopping to take in the beautiful views of Derwent Water on the way. After this we carried on the steep path, taking the left & stony fork for another 0.7 miles / 1.1 km all the way up to the summit of Skiddaw. The path afterwards took us 1.2 miles / 2 km to the peak of Skiddaw Little Man & onto our wild camping spot for the night, the next morning making our way back down to Millbeck via Applethwaite for 3.6 miles / 5.8 km.
The total route at 7 miles / 11.4 km was not an awful lot in distance but the incline & weather conditions at points certainly did make this one challenging climb…..
Hiking up 810-metres in just 2.2 miles / 3.6 km made the first part of our journey one up hill slog.. There was pretty much no break in the incline with the well laid out path become slippery stone for the last 1/2 a mile or so. We were told by some other hikers to make sure we stuck to the left hand side of the path & are we glad we did. The right hand side makes its way to Skiddaw Little Man which we ascended to after reaching Skiddaw itself.
Skiddaw – The Peak
As we started to reach the summit the wind really started to pick up making the climb even more tricky – all made totally worth it by the panoramic views up top. From the peak of Skiddaw you can see various mountain ranges including the North Pennines & even part of Snowdonia. The coastal plain is well in view up on Skiddaw as well as the Isle of Man being visible. We may have been windswept but we certainly left feeling wowed.
As well as the views on Skiddaw itself the surrounding fells in the summer sun made for the most beautiful scenery, as well as Derwent Water sitting prettily behind us for most of our hike, looking particularly breathtaking from Skiddaw Little Man.
The surrounding farmland & grazing cattle just added more of a rustic feel to our hike & of course a little bit of sunshine always helps to improve the views.
Our Camping Spot
We had no real clue where we would camp up when we started off on our hike, somewhere sheltered & of course with a good view was our main aim. We dropped back down the other side of Skiddaw Little Man & found a stunner of a spot, right on the ridge above Derwent Water that was nowhere near as windy as on the top. The wind however, did pick up quite a bit during the night but our trusty Weather Tec tent held up for us & the sunset more than made up for the crazy gales!
Making our way back down the well-marked path to Millbeck via the village of Applewaithe we set off early morning just after the sun had started to rise. This was such a beautiful time of day to hike, especially with the sun glistening on the valley below.
We continued our 3 peaks challenge in the Lake District by hiking up Helvellyn – Striding Edge click the link to read more about this epic hike.
We would love to hear about your own Lake District three peaks challenge or if you have done the Skiddaw hike!
Thanks so much for reading – if you have any questions on our hike at all or would like to know more about our challenge please let us know in the comments or get in touch via our contact page.
Happy adventuring 🙂
Kelly & Adam x