"No Keswick holiday is consummated without a visit to Catbells" - A.Wainwright
Not the first fell I attempted, but Catbells was the first Lakeland mountain that myself and crag rat Rainer successfully conquered. Yes, it's far from being the biggest of the bunch, but Catbells has a charm of its own and despite being hugely popular, you still get a sense of being away from it all.
It's not as easy as you might think - there is a small scramble and a couple of spots where some effort is required. It was also my introduction to that popular Lakeland trick of thinking you are just about to reach the summit when the next ridge apears beyond. Catbells does this a couple of times to you.
Situated close enough to Keswick, Catbells offers many options. It can be climbed on its own, or as part of the Newlands Horseshoe, or as a longer walk from Keswick - the walk through Portinscale and Swinside on the way is well worth doing - watch this space for a description of that walk coming soon. and you can make it an adventure by including a boat trip across Derwentwater on one of the Keswick cruises from Keswick to Hawes End.
|Catbells from across Derwentwater|
|Looking north to Bassenthwaite Lake|
Turning around you can across Derwentwater to see Keswick nestled at the top of the lake, with the mountains of the Skiddaw range creating the perfect backdrop.
|looking down back along Catbells to the Northern Fells|
|the view along Borrowdale|
|the view opposite Catbells from the camping barn|