Whinlatter Pass
Whinlatter Pass
Whinlatter is the northernmost road pass in the Lake District. The northeast end of the pass begins at Braithwaite and climbs to an altitude of 1040 feet before descending to the village of High Lorton. There are laybys on the road giving superb views over Bassenthwaite Lake to the Skiddaw range.

Near the summit of the Pass is the Whinlatter Forest Park, where a modern Visitor Centre gives details of the area and outlines the variety of forest walks available.

There are 14 miles of trails for walkers and cyclists to enjoy, and CCTV cameras let visitors peer into the nests of ospreys that call the Bassenthwaite area home from April through August. Ospreys can be also seen in the wild from an open-air viewpoint on Dodd Wood, on the far side of Bassenthwaite Lake.

One woodland trail leads through forestry plantations to the waterfall at Spout Force. Or, if you are feeling energetic, there are trails leading to the peaks of Whinlatter and Grisedale Pike. Some trails are designated for walking, others for orienteering or mountain biking. The forest is home to a wide variety of wildlife, including roe deer, badger, and siskin. The Whinlatter Forest is a protected habitat for the endangered red squirrel.

The Forestry Commission calls Whinlatter England's only Mountain Forest, but whatever definition you use, it is a wonderfully scenic area and can be combined into a circular driving route through the heart of the Lake District past Crummock Water, Buttermere, and over Honister Pass.