Lodore Falls – The romantic waterfall of Borrowdale

Lodore Falls has been a must see waterfall in Cumbria for many a visitor to the lake District. No great climb to make, no many miles to walk to them. The falls are not the largest by any stretch of the imagination but when you see the waterfall in full flow after rain you can most definitely see the natural beauty in abundance and why it has captured the heart of so so many people. I decided to go camera in hand this time….

lodore falls in flow

They are situated literally right behind the Lodore Falls Hotel,  take the B5289 from Keswick to Borrowdale along the east side of Derwentwater. At the far end of the lake you cannot miss the hotel, step behind it and the waterfalls appear within a few steps. Immediately, trust me,  you will see why this has become an extremely popular spot for wedding photos, a perfect natural backdrop.

rocks beneath the waterfall

It is not just modern newlyweds or tourists that Lodore Falls has inspired. In 1820 the poet Robert Southey took a visit and then wrote a poem about the falls that has been regarded one of the most remarkable Onomatopoeic Poems ever written, and to describe a natural landmark. To see it in its entirety it looks like a waterfall too. Excerpt:

From its sources which well
In the tarn on the fell;
From its fountains
In the mountains,
Its rills and its gills;
Through moss and through brake,
It runs and it creeps
For a while, till it sleeps
In its own little lake.

waterfall for wedding photos

The poem and its notoriety thus inspired more people and when the Powell Expeditions set out in 1869 to discover and map the Colorado and Green Rivers of the USA they named one of the great canyons The Gates of Lodore, also known as the Lodore Canyon.

BaldHiker Retreats
higher up the falls

Back to my spot by the falls here today. They start up above at Watendlath Tarn, a bit further on than Surprise View I have shown you before. It is Watendlath Beck that becomes the falls as they drop into Borrowdale. Not the largest of falls but wonderful to see and to sit and marvel by, especially on a quiet day. After rain it is a wondrous sight, after a dry period it can turn to a trickle. In any occasion I enjoy coming to sit and peacefully think and refresh.

close up of lodore falls

Parking. Can be an issue. Many people catch the bus around from Keswick. The only direct car park ‘at’ the location is the hotel’s of course. If you are not a guest it is £10 or you need to grab more than £10 worth of afternoon tea there. A bit further back towards Keswick along the road is Kettlewell (pay and display) car park by the shores of Derwentwater. (Get here very early or no room). From here you can take a woodland walk for a mile or so to the falls.

waterfall behind a hotel

Was time to leave again, but a spot I know I shall oft return. Among the trees and among the boulders. A thinking place, an inspiring place, Lodore Falls.

the falls from a distance
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