Walks for wheels
This week we had a young couple who came with a small child. Not unusual you say and I would agree but they posed a great question to us that I am sure lots of small holiday cottages like ourselves here in the lake district have been asked before.... they wanted to get out and about, I mean really experience what the lake district has to offer under foot. But I suspect with a small child in pushchair or even a small child with little legs, they werent in a position to get themselves onto higher ground.
So we really had to have a good think about this question as it isnt something that Tim and I have really ever had to consider, even with our nephew when he was wee because my brother and his partner used to baby bjorn him everywhere, even the routes on high have always been plausible for him and as soon as he got his mountain legs he was up as high as any of the rest of us on his own two feet.
As we didnt want to disappoint we came up with a few suggestions of our own, these were based on routes that we had experienced ourselves that would get them out and about without to much exertion or worry as far as pushchair wheels were concerned. Phew! we hit the nail on the head and thankfully they proved to be a hit.
This request did get me to thinking and so I gave the request a few strikes on Google this week. I mean we cant have our guests not getting to experience this place in full and we need to ensure little legs will want to keep walking and come back again. Plus we thought this kind of information would be useful to any other guests that may prove to have limited mobility and still want to experience the lake district in the best way possible.
So here we have a few of my favourite results from that Google search:
1. I send a big High five to the lake district national park for their page "miles without stiles": here they detail 42 routes across the National Park suitable for people with limited mobility. Wheelchair users, families with pushchairs, dog walkers with less active dogs and the visually impaired can choose from the list they provide.... yey!! I can say there are some really good ones in that list a few of my own pictures below show you what you could experience yourselves.
2. The Family Traveller chose ten "buggy friendly" walks with one of our own "easy like sunday morning" family walks at number two in the list of ten. This walk has a great family/dog friendly pub at its tip in the village of Elterwater itself the "Brittania Inn" great food and a pint (for the none drivers of you of course).
3. Last but not least who could forget the lovely grizedale forest for those of you who are expecting a big surprise! The forestry commission have a "walking in grizedale" page and having been there ourselves, the trails set out by the commission are really ideal for pushchairs and little bikes a like for those who have little legs. In addition there is a much needed cafe found by the visitors centre there and it serves up some great treats along with a small adventure playground for those little legs that just want to keep going.
But in reality the best thing for all of you is for you not to be frightened and just get out there! Really a pushchair or little legs should not be a reason for you to not enjoy all that the lake district has to offer. You do not need to be summiting your next Wainwright or scaling the ice route on Bowfell buttress, you just need to be enjoying the outdoors with all the family, however small they may be. Whatever you do with your little peeps make it an adventure not just a walk and most of all be the best girl guide/boy scout around and be prepared, for whatever is thrown at you including that lake district weather.
We hope this has been a useful post for our guests as we want to make sure everyone is catered for, even the smallest of all.
Kimberley and Tim