Slater’s Bridge is one of those Lakeland oddities that once you have visited,you want to go back time and time again. There is something special about it which you can’t quite grasp but has you enthralled all the same. I often visit it while out for a walk with the family and it doesn’t matter what the weather is like we always stop for a paddle in the cool clear water or skip a few stones across the pool.The bridge itself is unique, being both clapper and pack horse style in design and is well worn by the centuries of use. It was once used by miners heading for the quarries and is now a key link for many of the popular walking routes in the area. It is a fantastic place to take a picnic. With stunning views of the surroundinghills and the soothing sound of the water, it is difficult to think of a nicer place on a sunny afternoon.
Slater’s Bridge is on the Riverb Brathay in Little Langdale GRNY312030 and can be accessed by many of the popular walk routes in the area. You can walk to the bridge from Coniston village in about half an hour, walking from Skelwith Bridge or Elterwater will take about an hour.
From Ambleside or Coniston: take the A593 for Skelwith Bridge and then follow the road towards either for Colwith or Elterwater. The nearest parking to Slater’s Bridge is in the NT car park at Elterwater , but you can also park at Blea Tarn, Langdale and Coniston.
Planning your visit:
In Coniston, Skelwith Bridge and Elterwater: you will find pay and display parking and toilets. There are cafés at Skelwith Bridge and Coniston. The Britannia Inn at Elterwater (next to the National Trust car park) and the Three Shires in Little Langdale have great beer gardens for a sunny day.
I have lived and worked in the Lakes for most of my life both as a farmer and for the last 20+ years as a National Trust employee. Over the years I have worked right across the Lakes firstly as a practitioner repairing walls and footpaths and working on conservation projects. Then more recently managing upland access projects and advising on access and erosion issues, before gaining my current position managing the Ranger team in the South Lakes. I am also a very passionate supporter of rural skills and upland farming and sit on the national committee of the DSWA and also the Federation of Cumbrian Commoners. When not at work I run a 200ha upland farm with my family where we keep traditional breeds of cattle and sheep and assist in conservation grazing schemes.