Ennerdale Water

Location : Ennerdale Bridge / Ennerdale Valley & Forest

Grid Ref : NY 110150

ennerdale water


Ennerdale is the most westerly of the lakes, and the most remote, so it offers, even in high season, a place to escape. It is a deep glacial lake, 2.5 miles long 3/4 mile wide and 148 feet deep. The water is exceptionally clear, and contains a variety of fish. It currently serves as a reservoir for the coastal towns of West Cumbria, and is the only lake that does not have a road running alongside it.

Ennerdale has been at threat from proposals to build an underground storage facility for nuclear waste – otherwise known as a geological disposal facility (GDF), an issue that raised its head again in January 2018. See Ennerdale Forest & Valley page.

ennerdale water

Ennerdale, looking towards Anglers Crag.

Much of the land around the lake is owned by the Forestry Commission, and this has led to large scale planting of conifers, particularly at the far end of the lake, in the valley of the River Lisa.


Maps are available at tourist information centres, and in self service boxes at the Bowness Knott car park, describing forest walks around Ennerdale. The lake is only a short distance from the cyclepath from Whitehaven to Rowrah, which continues along minor roads to Ennerdale.


ennerdale water


Much of the shoreline and some of the surrounding fells are owned by the National Trust.


The closing sequences of the movie 28 Days Later (2002), directed by Danny Boyle, were filmed around the Ennerdale area, and include a sweeping panoramic view of the lake.


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