Walk from Riggs Cottage around the Wythop Valley

A pleasant walk from the cottage takes you from Riggs to the hamlet of Wythop Mill from where you will follow two ancient Cumbrian lonnings. Lonnings are ancient medieval lanes, usually between a farm and a village and usually relatively short. The majority of lonnings in Cumbria have been "upgraded" over the last 150 years to tracks and roads. However significant numbers still exist with several found close to Wythop Mill.
There are two routes by which Wythop Mill from can be reached Riggs Cottage. The first and simplest is to walk about 1.5km along the road at the top of the track. This road is usually very quiet and offers good views of Sale Fell and the valley below. For those that wish to avoid roads as much as possible the suggested route takes you across a number of fields and stiles before climbing up to the road closer to Wythop Mill. It shoud be pointed out that although this is an official footpath there is a requirement to jump over a narrow ditch.
Once Wythop Mill is reached the walk joins Seacross Lonning which wends it way between fields and woodland and often appears to be a green tunnel with trees hanging over from either side. The lonning ends at a minor road which takes you to St Cuthberts church built in 1806 on the site of a medieval chapel dating from 1210.
From St Cuthberts a narrow lane is followed past Beckhouse and leads to Green Lonning on the lower slopes of Ling Fell. Green Lonning joins a farming area with Wythop Mill. It gives good views of Ling Fell and the Embleton valley below. On reaching Wythop Mill you can retrace your steps to Riggs via whichever is your preferred route.
Note that this walk is on a mixture of paths, lonnings and roads. The roads are a mixture of quiet and very quiet so not many cars will be seen.
Total length of the walk is 7.8kms (4.8 miles). The total ascent and descent is 221m (725ft) with a highest point of 216m (708ft). Riggs Cottage is at 100m (330ft). The walk, stopping to admire the views, should take about 2.5 hours at a reasonable pace.


(1) If you decide not to walk across the fields turn right out of the cottage and walk up the track to the road where you turn right and join the field route at (11). Otherwise from the cottage gate turn left down the track, past the games barn and continue down the earthen track to the property below (Riggs Farm). The track opens out to a turning area. There is a continuation of the track passing immediately to the left of the large metal barn and to the right of Riggs Farm.

(2) Very shortly the track splits left and right. Follow it to the left and past Riggs Farm on your left.

(3) Just after Riggs Farm you will see two gates ahead. Pass through the first gate.

(4) After passing through the first gate turn left through the gate into a field with a grassy track following the edge of the field. Continue along the track with the fence on your right.


(5) You will pass through a number of gates. Just keep following the well defined track ahead.

(6) Eventually you will reach and pass East House on your left. Shortly after the house the track splits. Follow it around to the left (signposted to High East House) and continue up the lane ahead.

(7) As you approach High East House go through the gates. Although it looks like a private entrance there is actually a right of way here, once through the gates immediately bear round to the right and pass through a gate to the right of a new barn.

(8) Very quickly you will see a stile over the fence on your right. Cross the stile and follow the fence on your right for about 40 metres to a field boundary. Here you will see an indistinct track branching left at 45 degrees which will take you towards a gate.


(9) Go through the gate and follow the field boundary on your right towards a marshy (reeds) area. As you approach this you will see a stile.

(10) Unfortunately it is necessary to jump across a narrow ditch to reach the stile.

(11) After crossing the stile turn left and follow the field boundary towards the top of the field where there is another stile followed by steps up to the road via yet another stile. Turn right here. This is the road to Wythop Mill and the joining point for those that chose to walk along the road.

(12) Upon arriving at the four way junction in Wythop Mill take the first road on the right (Signposted Embleton)


(13) 300 metres down the road you will see a small group of cottages on the left with a signpost pointing to Seacross Lonning. Although not immediately obvious from the road the path passes very close to the left of the cottage by the signpost

(14) The path takes you over a narrow bridge across a stream and through a gate beyond. This is the start of Seacross Lonning.

(15) The path passes between fields, usually containing sheep, and rises gently ahead.

(16) To the left there are views of Ling Fell.


(17) Although this picture was taken in the Spring, you can see how in the summer the lonning becomes a tunnel of leaves.

(18) The sheep and lambs are generally very curious about passing walkers!

(19) Eventually the lonning ends at a concrete track. Turn left here and follow it up to a road at which you should turn right.

(20) Follow the road along for about 700 metres where you will find St Cuthberts Church. There is a narrow lane opposite the church signposted to Highside and Beckhouse, follow this lane.


(21) The lane initially passes through very high hedges. Keep on the lane ignoring various turnings off.

(22) After passing several houses the lane starts to climb and the tarmac starts to deteriorate. You are now starting to climb the lower slopes of Ling Fell.

(23) After reaching Highside Farm pass just to the left of the barn ahead before reaching a T-junction. Turn left here onto Green Lonning.

(24) There is a steep climb up the lonning at the start. However the climb doesn't last long and you are very soon walking on the level.


(25) As you continue along the lonning good views of Ling Fell to the right and the Embleton area to the left can be seen.

(26) After a while the lonning starts to drop down towards Wythop Mill and eventually joins a road. Turn right along the road and proceed downhill into Wythop Mill.

(27) Back at the signpost in Wythop Mill follow the road to Bassenthwaite which will take you back to Riggs Cottage

(28) Those wishing to cross the fields back to Riggs Cottage should cross the stile and retrace their route.


(29) Alternatively you can turn left at this gate a little further on along the road. This leads down to High East House but be warned it is steep.

(30) If you have continued along the road then St Margarets Church on the right built in 1866 is worth a visit. On reaching the Riggs track turn left and return to the cottage.