esk gorge – 23rd july


Me, Deb, and Erja had made plans to go to Eskdale for some climbing. I had a few crags to check out for the guidebook, Deb was keen to climb more over in the beautiful Eskdale, and Erja I think was just happy to not be at work!

The day was hot, well actually it was extremely hot. After some bracken bashing to find the crags we decided it was too hot to climb (a rare thing indeed for the Lake District).

So instead we decided to cool off in the mighty Esk Gorge. Well it would be rude not to right.

This is a trip we now offer for customers who have some previous experience in gorges and so I was especially keen to become ever more familiar with it as a complete trip, including timings and all those logistical things. Time well spent and all that.

We were not to be disappointed with our decision, for this is by far the best of the best of Lake District gorges, and although it won't suit all tastes (especially non-swimmers), for many it will be an experience that stays with them forever. It really is that good.

I'm not big on wild swimming, but was soon to be found swimming in every pool deep enough, and there's plenty of those. Getting out of the pools was often the crux, with slippery rocks and not always accommodating handholds, but at least the landings were soft (and wet!) if a slip happened, once or twice maybe.

We went somewhat further than what might be the norm, and exited just below The Great Moss. My recommendation would be to exit well before this though, as the final big waterfall was treacherous and the scramble up steep grass to avoid it being only marginally better.

I hope to be in this gorge a few times over the summer.


Timotei moment in the Esk Gorge


Emerald pool - Esk Gorge


Swims are the easier part, getting out is another matter!


Wild swimming - Esk Gorge

What a fantastic day out. Thanks to Erja for looking after Don and Deb for the photos.

Initial obstacles prove tricky - Esk Gorge


Brilliant scrambling higher up the Gorge


And all this is climbable!

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