Saturday, 26 March 2011

Derwent Water - Cumbria

Derwent Water is the third biggest of the sixteen lakes in the Lake District and is three miles long. It is also the widest a just over a mile wide, so a good kayak trip is to cross at the widest point.  One of the most popular lakes for kayaking, there is a marina at the Keswick end of the lake where you can hire canoes and kayaks.

Easy launching at Kettlewell

Derwent Water is a favourite lake of mine, dominated by the high mountain ridge of Catbells.  We parked in the National Trust car park at Kettlewell, at the south eastern corner of the lake and launched from the shingle ‘beach’.  As soon as you get out on the water you can feel the crosswinds coming off the mountains, which make it a bit hard to follow a straight course.  We headed for a land mark at the widest point and had a good paddle across.  In the middle the lake is over seventy feet deep!  (In January 2010 the whole lake was frozen over for the first time in ten years)

Lost on a lake?

When we landed on the opposite bank we couldn’t see Kettlewell, as the car park is perfectly hidden by trees, so we headed back on what we thought was the same course - but once again the wind must have taken us further down. In the end we had to get out and ask some walkers where the car park was, as you can’t see it until you are very close. 

That is the first time I’ve ever been ‘lost’ on a lake and we probably kayaked about four miles on the round trip but it was a great day out on the water and one I very much recommend.

Derwent Water

1 comment:

  1. Magnificent view all around on Derwentwater - and islands to visit. :-) Catbells is pretty low compared to other Cumbria ridges though!