Walking to Dale Head is one of the many amazing walks in the Lake District. There are a few ways you can do the Dale Head Walk which I’ll go into below, in particular, how to walk to Dale Head from Honister as this walk is challenging but doesn’t take too long and the view from the top is extremely rewarding.
Dale Head Walk
Dale Head Walk from Honister
Parking: Honister Slate Mine Car Park & National Trust Honister Pass Car Park
Distance: 2 Miles
Time: Approx 1.5 hours there and back
Why climb Dale Head in the Lake District from Honister? Well firstly, the Honister Pass is one of the most beautiful driving routes in the Lake District so it’s a good way to combine this drive and this hike.
Secondly, for the Dale Head Walk, you can park at Honister Slate Mine Car Park, or at the National Trust Honister Pass Car Park behind Honsiter House, leaving your car in a safe and secure place rather than parking on the side of the road.
If you’re like me you may worry about where to park, but parking for Dale Head here is easy!
All-day parking at the Slate Mine is £5.00 and you can use the Slate Mine cafe, toilets and have a look round the slate museum too.
What’s really great is that the £5.00 parking is refundable on the day if you take one of their Mine Tours, Via Ferrata, Subterranean Climb The Mine, The Infiniti Bridge or make a slate purchase over £10.00 retail value.
If you have children, making a full Lake District day trip of visiting Honister with the walk to Dale Head and a Honister activity is a great idea!
Dale Head Walk Directions
From Honister Slate Mine, walk up the hill a bit towards Honister House and you will see a sign across the road to start your ascent to Dale Head.
The sign at the bottom states that it is 1 mile to the top, which I didn’t think was that far but be warned, it is steep so it definitely took some time and much longer than I expected 1 mile to feel.
There are a few different pathways but generally it is just one straight path all the way to the top.
When you need to have a break, which I’m sure you will, when you look behind you you’ll be treated to a view of Great Gable Peak followed by Scafell Pike behind it. Scafell Pike is the highest mountain in England!
You’ll so get a pretty good view of the Slate Mine and a bit of Honister Pass to the right.
The walk isn’t extremely exciting seen as it is just straight up-hill and it is steep in parts but when you get to the top and you can see the stone summit you’ll soon be very glad you decided to do this Lake District Hike!
The view from the top of Dale Head overlooks a huge and beautiful valley with a town called Little Town in the far distance.
Dale Head and Robinson Walk
If you don’t want to go back down straight away then you can follow the pathway and the mountain ridge to the left and this will take you to Robinson View Point which will show you Newland Valley and you can also stop at Hindscarth on the way there or back if you want to see another viewpoint!
Walk from Little Town to Dale Head
Another option of how to walk to Dale Head is to start in Little Town and ascend up the side of the Valley which is basically the other side to Honister.
Park up in Little Town (from what I read, parking in Little Town is limited) and there is a full footpath loop which will take you from Little Town to Dale Head to Robinson and back to Little Town and you’ll be able to see Hindscarth and many Waterfalls on the way.
The Little Town to Dale Head Walk will take 5-6 hours and is 9-12 miles of walking depending on the exact route you do.
It’s detailed as strenuous by other hikers who have done it and I can imagine that after looking at the distance from Little Town to Dale Head and the incline up the mountain so make sure you are prepared for a full day of hiking if you do this option!
However, Honister to Dale Head is a simple 1.5-2 hour walk and then you can carry on with the rest of your day in the Lake District!