The Best Mountains To Hike In The UK
Right, I don’t know about you, but when I think of mountains I wouldn’t instantly think of places in the UK. Obviously you have well-known mountains like Mount Everest, Mount Kilimanjaro and Mount Fuji, but believe it or not, actually within the UK there are some really epic mountain hikes for hikers of all levels.
So let’s get started…
This is one of our personal favourites, here at Awesome Outdoors. Tryfan has a height of 917m and is recognisable due to its 3-ridge top! The most popular route to the summit is the North Ridge. This is not a mountain for the faint-hearted as you will need to use both hands and feet to reach the peak, making it a Scramblers dream. There are two key features of this mountain. The first is about a third of the way up on the North Ridge and is called “The Cannon”. This is a distinctive horizontal rock that sits upwards at a 45-degree angle and can be seen from the valley below. Secondly, at the peak, you will find ‘Adam and Eve’. This is a pair of boulders in which hikers can leap from one to another if you so dare!!!
Helvellyn, Lake District
With a height of 950m, Helvellyn mountain is the 3rd highest peak in the UK. On the eastern side of the mountain, you can expect scenery of glacial coves and two sharp-topped ridges, Swirral Edge and Striding Edge. There are many different routes for hikers of all levels to ascend the mountain. But if you are a more experienced hiker looking for more of a challenge, then we, here at Awesome Outdoors, recommend you take the Striding Edge route. This route entails narrow tracks with huge drops on either side as well as giving you the opportunity to engage in some scrambling along the way too...it will certainly get your heart racing!
Ben Macdui, Cairngorms, Scotland
Ben Macdui mountain is the second-highest mountain in Scotland at 1309m high and is actually the highest in the Cairngorms National Park. The ‘easiest’ route to the peak of Ben Macdui is by walking across the Cairngorm plateau from the Cairngorm mountain summit. There is a path between the two peaks which is popular with hikers alike. Although the plateau is fairly featureless, don’t let this fool you. We recommend you still carry a map and compass with you for navigation purposes because if a thick cloud cover occurs, it can throw you off course and can become quite the challenge.
For our last recommendation, we are going to talk about ‘The National Three Peaks Challenge’...three mountains rolled into one for all hikers that like to give themselves a bit of a challenge.
Ben Nevis, Scotland Height 1345m
Scafell Pike, Lake District Height 978m
Snowdon, Wales Height 1085m
Each mountain offers different challenges to hikers of varying experiences. A lot of hikers like to take this challenge on and try to complete it within 24 hours. This challenge incurs a total walking distance of 23 miles alongside a total ascent of 3064 metres.
Ben Nevis, Scotland
This is the highest mountain in Scotland and is for the more advanced hiker, with steep paths ascending the mountain. Hikers will endure rougher terrain on the upper section of the mountain and you will find that it is often covered with snow. This can cause hikers to lose their way easily so it is recommended that you have good navigational skills, as well as some winter equipment in order to be able to fully summit the mountain!
Scafell Pike, Lake District
Scafell Pike is the highest mountain in England and is for the more intermediate hiker. That being said, there are still some challenging parts to this hike. Lots of rocky terrain and the final climb is steep with loose ground. Once you summit the peak though, you will not be disappointed with the views!
Snowdon....the highest peak in Wales. This mountain has something for hikers of all levels, with 6 paths of varying difficulties to choose from. As you ascend the mountain, you will endure beautiful scenes of the valleys and lakes. One of the routes up the mountain is called 'The Rhyd Ddu Path'. If you decide to take this route to the summit, ensure you have a head for heights as you will have to walk a narrow ridge near to the peak!
So these are just some of the awesome mountain hikes in the UK. Do you have a favourite? Have you experienced the Three Peak Challenge? Have you hiked any of the mountains we have mentioned? If so, what challenges did you face?
We would love to hear about your own personal mountain hiking experiences, so drop us a comment below.
Author: Gemma Johnson