Wildlife & Geology


Sparsely populated and filled with wild spaces and various landscapes from rocky fell tops to crystal clear lakes, densely packed forests and open moorland, the Lake District is a wildlife, animal, and bird paradise.

Its varied geology and low population rates have meant that many rare species can be found here, and, if you are lucky, you may catch a glimpse during your visit. Red Squirrels, Osprey, Buzzards, Common Shrew, Bats, Red Deer, Roe Deer, Herdwick Sheep and many more species to be spotted. Find out more at www.thelakedistrict.org


The highest cliffs and gullies are a stronghold for arctic-alpines – plants that thrive in the cold and harsh conditions. Out of reach from grazing sheep, plants like purple saxifrage, alpine cinquefoil, mountain avens, alpine lady’s mantle and alpine catchfly flourish, especially in north and east-facing coves and gullies where the soils are slightly richer in minerals.

These damp cliffs and ledges are also home to some very rare eyebrights, including upland eyebright and, particularly, Cumbrian eyebright, which has its headquarters here. With nine species and numerous hybrids recorded in total, the Lake District is a veritable hotspot for eyebrights!

Gully sides and cliff ledges with deeper, richer soil are home to a remarkable community of plants resembling a Pennine hay meadow, with tall colourful flowers such as wood crane’s-bill, globeflower, water avens, wild angelica and roseroot. Find out more at Plantlife : Lake District IPA


A walk in the Lake District you will find a landscape carved from fire and ice.

In the Lake District, 500 million years of geological processes have produced a physical landscape of mountains and lakes of great scenic beauty.

Slate developed from sediments in oceans and seas, volcanoes erupted, limestone was formed by the deposition of dead crustaceans and sandstone was created in desert conditions. Various minerals were also formed in joints and faults in the bedrock.

The layers of rock formed were shifted and sculpted – first through different stages of folding and uplifting and then by the actions of glaciers and meltwater.

As a result, the topography of the Lake District includes smooth U-shaped valleys and steep and sharp ridges, England’s highest mountain and deepest and longest lakes. The Lake District is often compared to a wheel, with the hub approximately at Dunmail Raise, north of Grasmere. The valleys and lakes radiate outwards as the ‘spokes’. Find out more at www.lakedistrict.gov.uk