The Bowder Stone

  • Difficulty: Easy

Located in the Jaws of Borrowdale, where the valley narrows, the Bowder Stone is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the Lake District. At 18 metres long, over 8 metres high and weighing around 1,253 tons, it is the biggest freestanding piece of rock in the Lake District and appears like a diamond resting on one point.

One of Lakeland’s most famous features, this 2000 ton stone, some 30 feet high, fifty feet across and ninety feet in circumference, rests in a state of delicate balance.

It did not topple down from the mountain side like most visitors assume, for it is not a local rock. It was most likely carried here from Scotland by the glaciers of the Ice Age. It possibly gets its name from Balder, son of the Norse God Odin, but there are no legends attached to this boulder.

A ladder allows you to climb to the top. It is a short level walk from the National Trust car park on the Keswick to Borrowdale road, near Grange.

Attribution: Graham Hogg (Creative Common license)