A 4.7 miles from Dufton village to the summit of Dufton Pike and back.


The picturesque village of Dufton nestles quietly on the western flank of the North Pennines overlooked by the pyramidal Dufton Pike, which is the focus of this walk.

Dufton village green, approx 3.5 miles north of Appleby-in-Westmorland. Parking available in the small car park just off the village green at NY 689 249.

Begin from the village car park, with it’s purpose-built toilet facilities, situated at the eastern end of the attractive wide tree-lined green. Pass into the street and turn right. Follow the road round by Old Dufton Hall farmhouse to enter the lane to the left of the chapel, signposted ‘Pennine Way to Garrigill and public bridleway to High Scald Fell’. Keep within the confined lane rising by the sympathetically restored Pusgill House. Beyond this cottage, the lane becomes more the age-old green-way emerging into pasture at a gate and corrugated shepherd’s cot.

Not quite Zermatt and the Matterhorn, but Dufton and its Pike are an exciting partnership. Most fellwalking is about big walks, hence it is a particular pleasure to discover all the attributes of a good fell day wrapped up in a compact three-hour round. Quiet country lanes lead to and from this eyecatching fell, whose geology owes more to the make-up of the Lake District than the Pennines. As a worthy supplement, you might be tempted to add Dufton Ghyll to the make an even more complete rural round.


Rising easily, this open bridleway once served to connect the village with the intensive lead mining activity of upper Great Rundale. Seek a kissing gate in the wall on the left. This gives access to the direct ascent of Dufton Pike, climbing the steep slope with evidence of rabbit burrows on a popular grass trail up the south ridge.

The summit is a grass platform, unadorned with even the pretence of a cairn, is the ideal place to sit and gaze to neighbouring Knock Pike, a diminutive partner peak. Looking eastwards are Brownber Hill, the limestone scars of Great Rundale and the whole amazing Pennine scarp, which has a propensity to attract cloud.

Westwards the huge expanse of the Eden valley stretches attention towards the distant High Street range.


Appleby lies to the south and perhaps with the occasion thump, thump you may be made aware of the Warcop military firing ranges to the south-east.

Descending naturally north-west, the grassy ridge comes to a wall, marking the edge of open accessland and debars further progress to the lower pastured portion of the ridge, known as Cosca Hill. Waymarks guide you to the right along the green way to meet up with a track at a waymark post, here turn acutely left following the footpath to a wall-stile. Over to the right, an old coppice oak wood forms a fine haven for birds at the foot of Great Rundale.

Carry on eventually meeting up with a vehicle track, keep left at the junction and continue to follow the rising track. You are now on the Pennine Way.


At the top of the rise the track swings left flanked by the remnants of an old hedged lane leading down through cattle pasture to a gate entering a lane beside the remote former farm of Halsteads, the yard still used for stock handling.

Follow Hurning Lane, soon to become a confined green way via stiles. The muddy potential relieved by recent ditching and flag paving. Two gates lead on by Coatsike Farm into the approach lane. Where the track starts to turn right, go forward with the Pennine Way waymarking along a fenced lane via flag bridges and hand-gates to re-connect with the lane used on the outward leg, turning right to conclude the walk.

You can download a PDF of Dufton Pike Walk from Cumbria County Council.