The Top 7 Trail Running Routes | The Epicentre

1st April 2022 by

The lake district has plenty on offer when it comes to trail running. From long flowing trails that offer glorious views over the Lake District fells for when you want to push the miles, to steep ascents and technical descents for when you really want to test your skill. The Lake District trail runs we’ve selected are by no means an exhaustive list, however; these favourites of ours will inspire you to get out there no matter the weather!


Trail running in the lake district

1. The Epicentre - Wansfell – Troutbeck

Distance 6.64 Miles. 1600ft Ascent. A great run for early mornings or late afternoons. A loop that starts at the shop and is relatively unaffected by the weather. When the sky is clear it gives great views towards the bigger fells and down Windermere. 

trail running routes

The Epicentre – Loughrigg – Rydal Water

Distance 6.17 Miles. 1000ft Ascent. A classic run that’s popular with hillwalkers. Start at the shop and head for the summit that offers 360-degree views of the surrounding fells. Drop off the back of Loughrigg to Grasmere and Rydal Water which is a great place to stop in the summer for a quick dip! Beware this route can be very busy at times with other hill users and very boggy after a good downpour.

trail routes lake district

Kendal Town Hall – Cunswick Scar – Scout Scar

Distance 8.87 Miles. 77ft Ascent. This run takes you from the busy town of Kendal and out onto the two scars that border the town. With fantastic views that give you the Lake District fells from a very different angle and offering views over to the coast and over to the Yorkshire Dales. There’s a little Dome shelter on the summit of Scout Scar which is perfect for taking in the sights and snaffling a few snacks in the process. Drop back into Kendal and run back along the river Kent to finish.

trail running route guide

Langdale – Crinkle Crags – Bowfell 

Distance 9.81 Miles. 2875ft Ascent. A great route that starts and finishes at a pub! Head up the punishing climb to Red Tarn and over onto Crinkle Crags, via the bad step, towards Bowfell. This route really gives you that feeling of remoteness and so good navigation skills especially in poor weather is required.

lake district trail running route

Catbells – Maiden Moor – High Spy

Distance 12.9 Miles. 2750ft Ascent. Another great loop with punishing climbs and technical descents. The views more than make up for this! From the top of Maiden Moor look back towards Catbells, Derwent Water and Keswick. The loop drops off High Spy and loosely handrails the Cumbria way back to the start. There’s typically a good Ice cream van along this route in the summer!

where to run in the Lake District

Elterwater – Little Langdale – Cathedral Caves

Distance 5.06 Miles. 675ft Ascent. Starting in the pretty village of Elterwater, trot along through the woods to Little Langdale and down towards Cathedral Quarry. An abandoned quarry that’s now popular with climbers and historians alike. This route takes in a lot of mining history past and present so makes a great half day activity.

Where to run in the lake district

Walna Scar – Old man of Coniston – Dow Crag - Brown Pike

Distance 7.28 Miles. 2075ft Ascent. This route starts at the very popular Walna Scar Car Park and so getting there early is key. Tick off 3 classic Wainwrights with this route that offers views to the coast and over to Scafell Pike. A challenging run that has some technical sections both up and down but more than make up for it with the long flowing section of downhill from Dow Crag. 

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