top of page

Guided Rock Climbing: Lake District

Guided climbing in the Lake District can be an exhilarating experience for both novice and experienced climbers alike. The Lake District, known for its stunning landscapes and challenging terrain, offers a variety of climbing routes suitable for all skill levels.

Lake District rock climbing
Challenging slab climbing - Eskdale

The Appeal of Guided Rock Climbing

Whether you're a beginner looking to learn the ropes or a seasoned climber seeking new challenges, or wanting expert guidance in an unfamiliar area, there's something for everyone in this outdoor playground. With expert guides leading the way, you'll discover hidden gems, conquer towering crags and forge unforgettable memories against a backdrop of sweeping valleys and shimmering lakes.

Picture yourself clinging to a sheer rock face, the wind whispering through the valleys below as you ascend to new heights. That's the thrill of guided rock climbing in the Lake District. Guided by experienced climbers, you'll tackle a variety of routes suited to your skill level and preferences.

Grey Crags
Rock Climbing in Buttermere - Grey Crags

Where do we climb?

  1. Langdale Renowned for its dramatic scenery, rocky landscape and climbs that can offer a suitable challenge to all, Langdale is a must-visit destination for any climbing enthusiast. For classic trad climbs this is the place to come, Langdale promises an unforgettable climbing experience amidst some of the Lake District's most stunning landscapes - we recommend Gimmer Crag, Pavey Ark, Raven Crag and Kettle Crag.

  2. Borrowdale Nestled amidst the verdant slopes of Borrowdale lies more climbing paradise waiting to be explored. Home to iconic crags such as Shepherd’s Crag, Black Crag and Gillercombe. Borrowdale offers a diverse range of climbing opportunities, from traditional multi-pitch routes to challenging single pitch test pieces. With its tranquil ambiance and stunning vistas, this idyllic valley provides the perfect backdrop for a day of adventure on the rock.

  3. Wasdale For those seeking a truly wild and remote climbing experience, look no further than Wasdale. Tucked away in the western reaches of the Lake District, Wasdale boasts some of the region's most challenging climbs, including the legendary Napes Needle and Great Gable. With its rugged terrain and awe-inspiring vistas, this is sure to test your skills and leave you in awe of nature's raw beauty.

  4. Duddon Valley Duddon Valley, tucked away in the southwestern corner of the Lake District National Park is a hidden gem for rock climbing enthusiasts. With its tranquil atmosphere, stunning scenery, and a variety of climbing routes, the Duddon Valley offers a unique and memorable climbing experience. We recommend Wallowbarrow Crag, providing a wealth of traditional climbing opportunities. From easy slabs to challenging cracks and chimneys, there's something for climbers of all abilities to enjoy.

  5. Buttermere Buttermere is home to a variety of classic trad routes that cater to climbers of all abilities. Whether you're looking to link big scrambles and mountaineering routes or climb sweeping slabs of immaculate rock, there's something for everyone here. Popular crags like Eagle Crag and Grey Crag offer a wealth of traditional climbing opportunities set amidst stunning scenery.

Langdale backdrop
Langdale Rock Climbing. Photo credit: Mark Eddy (Mountain Journeys)

What to look for before booking a guide/instructor

Before booking a guided climbing experience, it's essential to research the company or guide to ensure they have a good reputation and adhere to safety standards. Additionally, consider your own climbing experience and comfort level when choosing a route or guide

Here are some tips to research when hiring a guide:

Are they qualified?

Look out for the MCI qualification. This qualification trains and assess instructors to guide all manner of rock climbs, from scrambles to multi-pitch crags, mountain venues and sea cliffs.

Guides assessed to these standards have a realm of experience, they are assessed to a minimum of the grade VS 4c (at which they need to be proficient and confident) and they are trained in all climbing related rescue and emergency procedures.

Are they affiliated?

Do they display an association badge? We recommend looking out for the Association of Mountaineering Instructors (AMI).

AMI was formed to represent the interests of the highly experienced mountaineers who have undergone rigorous training and assessment to qualify under the Mountain Training (MTUKI) Mountaineering and Climbing Instructor Scheme. All members of the Association are qualified Mountaineering and Climbing Instructors (MCI) or Winter Mountaineering and Climbing Instructors (WMCI) - for more info

Do they have a good reputation?

Word of mouth is often the best way to find a good guide, if they are recommended there is normally good reason for that. We recommend checking out their TripAdvisor (or similar) or reading the client testimonials displayed on their website.


It is okay to ask for proof of insurance before booking a climbing guide. Any professional will be happy to prove their insurance, qualifications and first aid.


Expect to pay around £200-£250 per day; this will depend on group sizes, the climb itself and goals/ambitions for the day. If the price seems low, ask yourself why? High quality guiding and instruction is worth it.

Corvus - guided climbing
Corvus. A classic mountaineering 'Diff' in Borrowdale

What are you waiting for?

Guided rock climbing in the Lake District is an experience like no other - a thrilling blend of adventure, adrenaline, and awe-inspiring beauty. Whether you're scaling cliffs for the first time, seeking new routes or exploring mountain crags, this iconic region offers endless opportunities to test your skills, push your limits, and create memories that will last a lifetime. So why wait? Grab your gear, and embark on the adventure of a lifetime in the Lake District.

Complete alongside Napes Needle
Needle Ridge, high above Wasdale. A perfect beginner mountain route.

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page