Lakeland Walking Breaks, walking breaks in the Lake District

Jenkyn's Crag


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Jenkyn's Crag

Following in the footsteps of Victorian ladies

Jenkyn's Crag is a viewing point situated on the southern edge of Skelghyll Woods, Ambleside. It used to offer superb views along Windermere, and also of the Coniston and Langdale fells. But in recent times the trees around the crag have grown and at certain times of the year parts of the view are hidden by the lush foliage.

In Victorian times the crag was a popular "viewing station". Crinoline Clad ladies, often wearing little more than lightweight slipper style footwear, would take a carriage up into Skelghyll woods to enjoy the views and a picnic. Once at the Crag, they would turn their backs on the view and look at it through a "Claude Glass", a small mirror that framed the view as though it was in a picture. This was seen as the best way to fully appreciate the splendour of the Lake District scenery.

"Claude Glasses" could be bought in many shops in Ambleside, and could be fitted with coloured glass filters to give the view a different appearance and mimic the changing of the seasons. A yellow filter gave the impression of sunlight, whilst a blue filter was more reminiscent of winter.

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A short stroll through Skelghyll Woods in Ambleside, up to Jenkyn's Crag, an old viewing station overlooking Windermere


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Jenkyn's Crag is featured in the following Jonathan Craig Guides. Click the picture of the book for more information.

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This book features a walk from Ambleside to Windermere via Troutbeck that includes Skelghyll Woods and goes past Jenkyn's Crag.