How to explore the Lake District Responsibly

Help us to turn Black Friday Green this year! Get outside and enjoy one of our favourite playgrounds responsibly. Here’s some handy advice to get you started.

There are many places we love to explore here at Montane, but one of our all-time favourites is undeniably the Lake District National Park. Boasting some of England’s best mountains, it’s bursting with adventure opportunities for hikers, runners and climbers alike. It’s a place we know we are privileged to have on our doorstep. Somewhere we are committed to helping to survive …and thrive!

As part of our ongoing commitment to protecting this local playground, this year we’re swapping Black Friday deals for good deeds, donating our Black Friday marketing budget of £2,500 to a cause we’re extremely passionate about, Fix the Fells. For those unfamiliar, take a look at this Q&A with experienced volunteer and ranger Caroline, who tells us more about the work this money goes towards and why it's so essential to help protect the Lake District landscapes for future generations. 

But we’re not stopping there! We want your help to enable us to fully embrace the ethos of Green Friday. This is a day for giving back, getting out into nature and disconnecting from the consumerism that ultimately drives Black Friday sales. With this in mind, we wanted to share some ways in which we believe you can also help protect the Lake District, one of the UK's favourite playgrounds…

Stick to the paths

This is the mantra of Fix the Fells, the team dedicated to maintaining upland paths across the Lake District National Park. Not doing so has damaging effects on the biodiversity surrounding these paths, and ultimately contributes to ugly erosion scars. According to Fix the Fells, one of the worst things you can do is walk directly beside the path. 

Whilst it is always preferable that you stick to the designated paths, we know that part of enjoying the great outdoors is experiencing a wilder side to these green spaces. That’s why Fix the Fells suggest that, in these instances, you explore as far from the path as possible, to help mitigate the impact.  Discover more advice from this passionate team of local rangers and volunteers, who are helping to maintain the iconic landscapes we love in our dedicated podcast with them.

Green Friday

Explore lesser-known peaks 

Attracting over 15 million visitors a year, the Lake District is the most visited national park in the country. Many flock to take on one of the iconic peaks of the region,  including England’s highest mountain Scafell Pike or Catbells, known as the hub of the Lakes, thanks to its close proximity to the bustling town of Keswick, its relatively easy ascent and breath taking views. 

Despite its popularity, the region also boasts some lesser-known gems which, even in the height of summer, can still feel relatively quiet. This includes the far north of the Lakes and the far south west near Eskdale. Not sure where to begin? Take a look at our #TeamMontane hike recommendations for the chance to enjoy an off-the-beaten-track walk, offering peace, solitude and a quieter side of the Lakes.

For those desperate to tick off those iconic Lakeland summits, why not visit outside of the popular summer months? The shoulder seasons of autumn and spring offer many seasonal delights, including colourful foliage, lambs and spring flowers. Just don’t forget to make sure you layer up with the appropriate kit to keep you well-protected and check the weather before setting off!

Give back 

The incredible work of Fix the Fells needs our support! Each year they need to raise a staggering £500,000 so that they can carry out the essential maintenance and repair work needed in the Lake District. Alongside our own donation this year, you yourself can easily donate directly to Fix the Fells. Simply head to their website and follow the steps to get involved. 

Help us to donate more! We work with the George Fisher Tea Round, a fun and accessible 30-mile challenge exploring several Lakeland peaks. Everyone who takes part is encouraged to offset any damage caused to the landscapes by donating to Fix the Fells. For every donation received, we here at Montane match fund this, doubling the donation. So far, since 2021, we have raised over £2,000. 

Black Friday Sustainability donation

Go prepared

Preparation is key to any good adventure and the same applies to those eager to explore this iconic playground. Wild places ultimately always come with an element of danger and ensuring you are ‘adventure smart’ not only helps to mitigate this, but it can also ultimately save lives.

Now the weather in the Lake District is notoriously changeable, especially up at the peaks, so it is always best if you have a reliable layering system to keep you warm and protected. This includes a waterproof jacket and a packable, warm insulated layer such as a down jacket, that you can carry alongside other essentials in a backpack. At Montane, we’re specialists in developing technical kit for extreme conditions so you can rest assured our kit will keep you well-protected on the move.

Seeking more advice?

We are on a journey towards being more sustainable here at Montane and we want to take you on this journey with us too. We hope you found the above advice helpful, many of which can be applied to other natural playgrounds across the UK, and further afield too. For those seeking more, don’t miss these additional tips to help you explore the great outdoors more responsibly in future.