Open water swimming and wild swimming have risen in popularity over the recent years as more and more people enjoy swimming outdoors. The English Lake District, with its stunning landscape of lakes and mountains, is one of the best places in the world for open water swimming.
Andrea Kelly from Ambleside, based at her adventure swimming company Swim the Lakes, offers very useful advice for visitors wishing to take to the water. Here are some of her top tips.
Where to swim in the Lake District
Swimming is very accessible in the Lake District, you can swim in any of the Lakes with the exceptions of those that are reservoirs or are privately owned. More adventurous wild swimmers will also want to head to the mountain tarns for a more wild or remote experience. Whichever you choose you'll need a good map to show you the public footpaths for access and, if you are venturing to more remote or higher waters, ensure you have brushed up on your navigation and mountain skills.
For more information on where to swim in the Lake District, we have put together a great guide here: Where to swim in the Lake District.
Safe Swimming in the Lake District
Whether swimming in a Lake or smaller tarn using your common sense and a bit of prior planning will ensure a safer swim.
Some good advice includes: making yourself as visible as possible in the water, choose the smaller Lakes with less boat traffic, take a friend, check out your get in and exit points. Swim within your own capabilities and consider the effect of cold on your body. Think about wearing a wetsuit and taking extra warm layers of clothing to put on afterwards.
All the equipment you need including swim tow floats and bright swim caps can be found at Swim the Lakes on Compston Road in Ambleside. We also run popular introduction courses and guided swims from short wild swims to weekend breaks.
For even more outdoor adventures in the Lake District, check out our guide to the best adrenaline-fulled activities the National Park has to offer.