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Esk Gorge

The Ultimate Lake District Canyoning Experience.

Deep in the mountains, this is the most exciting Ghyll in the Lake District. The Esk is a big adventurous day out in the hills. This mountain stream winds it's way down a rocky gorge and is dotted with stunning emerald-green plunge pools. The backdrop is some of the most beautiful mountain scenery you will find in the Lakes - towering as you approach, is the famous Bowfell and at the top of the valley there lies the mighty Scafell Pike.

There is rock scrambling galore along with swims and jumps into crystal-clear pools. Everything is optional but for those seeking adrenaline, the Esk is calling you! There are numerous jumps, with a few up to 8 metres, this is an adventure sure to get your pulse racing!

Esk Gorge, Eskdale - Video

Esk video
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Who would this ghyll suit?:

This experience is for those who want to fully immerse themselves in the mountains for a full day and for those seeking a big fun adventure with lots of jumps and plenty of adrenaline!

The Esk Gorge Scramble is a physical day out. You'll walk 45 minutes into the mountains carrying your wetsuit, extra layers and provisions for the day.

Once at the venue, we eat some lunch whilst gazing at the awesome scenery, change into our wetsuits and then spend up to 3 hours swimming, scrambling and jumping into this fabulous gorge. We'll then change and walk back out. 

Minimum age 14+ with an average level of fitness.

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How to Book:

You can book The Esk Gorge online here. For all other activities or to book multiple activities visit our main online booking page.


If you are looking for alternative dates/times, or cannot find your chosen activity please do contact us to arrange your activity - we will do our best to accommodate you. For some of our more bespoke activities please contact us.

Please note: All under 18's must be accompanied by an adult.

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The Esk Gorge: Adult £90pp Child £85pp (Age 14+).

Discount available for larger groups.

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Time Out

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"My partner and I did Church Beck with Path to Adventure and heard about the more adventurous Esk Gorge. We were stoked when we got the chance to do this Ghyll Scramble - an incredibly beautiful walk to the starting point. We were in awe of the landscape and the turquoise water the entire time. The jumps are so much fun and the scenery is breathtaking.

We were out with another family which was really nice to navigate the Gorge with some other folks. Thank you to Matt who is a wonderful guide. Would highly recommend this gem of an adventure! Have fun!"

Thomas  J - June 2022

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"A great day, would definitely recommend to anyone wanting to do something a bit different to get the adrenaline going!


Al was knowledgeable and very professional. He seemed to take the ability of the individuals involved into consideration when deciding which parts of the ghyll to traverse.


Kit provided is very high quality, wet suits allowed us to get in and out of freezing cold water for 3-4 hours.


Cannot recommend enough."

Adam H - May 22

  • What is Ghyll Scrambling and Canyoning?
    Ghyll Scrambling goes by few names: Gorge Walking, Gorge Scrambling, River Scrambling, Waterfall Jumping - they all mean the same thing. Ghyll is a word used in the north of the country and comes from the old Norse word 'gil' meaning a steep sided valley. You may also have heard of Canyoning. Technically speaking Canyoning is descending a river and Ghyll Scrambling is going up though some of our ghylls have a mix of both. Ropes can be used in both scenarios, but generally Canyoning involves a series of jumps, abseils, scrambles and slides to descend the river. Ghyll Scrambles vary in nature - there is usually a mix of some or all of: scrambling, climbing (sometimes with ropes), slides and jumps.
  • What will I wear?
    We provide comfortable and flexible winter thickness wetsuits along with snug neoprene socks. Our wetsuits are always washed with antibacterial soap and then rinsed and our socks go through the washing machine. Our wetsuits and socks are always clean and dry. We bring along a selection to choose from to ensure they are fitted correctly. As well as this we provide a helmet, a buoyancy aid and a cagoule top too on cooler days. During colder months we also provide hats and gloves. Under your wetsuit you will just need swimwear and over the top you'll need a pair of leggings or joggers (we have spares if you need them). On your feet you need a pair of good fitting sturdy trainers or walking boots. Please note crocs, lightweight water shoes or sandals are not appropriate. We think great kit is a really important part of you having an amazing experience with us. That is why all our equipment is of high quality, and is always clean and fitted correctly, enabling you to have a fantastic experience whatever the weather. As part of the booking process we request information for your wetsuit. We ask you for your dimensions - height, weight, t-shirt or dress size and shoe size for our neoprene socks. For young children we just need to know whether they are average size for their age. It is important you give us all this information so we can pack the correct selection of wetsuits for you. For Stickle Ghyll & Tilberthwaite only: It is also possible on really hot days to do these scrambles comfortably in normal clothes. If this is the case, we will contact you prior to the session to offer you this option so that you can bring extra clothes to change into afterwards. Our vans are packed the day before. Please send us your info well in advance of your session, it will be gratefully received. Don't worry though - we will send you an automated email reminder a few days before, in case you forget!
  • Will I be warm enough?
    The simple answer is YES. We make sure you will be comfortable whatever the season. Our thick 5mm wetsuits are actually designed by a UK surfing company to be used in the sea around the UK in winter. As they are high quality wetsuits they are also very flexible and comfortable to wear. We also provide good neoprene socks to keep your feet warm. On cooler days and at either end of the season, we also provide cagoule tops, gloves, hats and occasionally if needed, a fleece also. Stickle Ghyll & Tilberthwaite only: It is also possible on really hot days to do these scrambles comfortably in normal clothes. If this is the case, we will contact you prior to the session to offer you this option, so that you can bring extra clothes along to change afterwards. If you have any special requirements or medical conditions regarding kit or warmth please get in touch and chat to us about what you need and we'll do our best to help.
  • What happens if it's raining?
    Ghyll Scrambling is a fantastic activity in the rain and when you are wearing a wetsuit you don't even notice it! The session will continue as scheduled, unless the water levels make the activity unsafe to proceed. If water levels make the venue unsafe, we may choose to move the activity to another venue that is suitable for the conditions. If this is not possible, we will offer the choice to switch to another activity or to cancel with a full refund. We will contact you on the day if we need to make a change to the plan. We spend a lot of time in each of the ghyll's and know the nature of each intimately. We use our knowledge of the topography (surrounding land and features), current ground conditions, previous rainfall, rain gauges and weather forecasts to determine where it is safe to proceed each day. Dynamic risk assessments based on conditions and each individual in the group, are carried out during each activity by our highly experienced instructors. Your safety and that of our teams is of the utmost importance to us.
  • I have a pre-existing medical condition - can I do this activity?
    Please check with your doctor if you are unsure. We do not advise you participate if you think this activity will exasperate a pre-existing medical condition. If you have any prescribed medication that you may need to take such as an Inhaler or Epi Pen (even if you haven't used them for a while), please bring them along and your instructor will put them in a waterproof bag for you. If you need any extra information so you can make an informed decision regarding participating in our activities or have any special requirements, please get in touch. Please note - we ask if you have medical information during the booking process and then check again with you on the day so that we have all the relevant information needed to deliver a safe and fun activity.
  • Do I have to do the jump and climbs?
    All the challenges are optional including any jumps and/or climbs. Your instructor will be there to answer any questions you may have and will support and encourage you, if you want to try them. Please note Netherbeck has a short easy roped climb that is essential to exit the ghyll.
  • Is there a weight limit?
    The upper weight limit is determined by our wetsuits and safety equipment. Our wetsuits go up to a XXXL and our harnesses will fit a waist approx of 140cm/55inc. Please note that all our ghylls require you to have a reasonable level of fitness and mobility. In Church Beck the upper canyon in particular may not be appropriate for larger adults. This is due to sections that require careful management from our instructors and also how you enter the water on jumps and slides. Larger adults may go too deep at certain water levels for us to consider some of the jumps safe to do and some scrambles need to be carefully managed by instructors. We need to keep both you and our instructors safe. Our instructors will make appropriate decisions on the day. If you have any queries about whether this is appropriate for you please do give us a call. Our smallest wetsuits will fit a small 5 year old.
  • Do you take photos?
    Yes we do. We send them free of charge via a link which will be emailed to you after the activity. Please note we do our best to get them to you by the evening of the activity but due our slow, rural internet speeds and in busy periods, it may be the following day.
  • What do I do with my valuables?
    You will need to leave all valuables behind during your session and remove any jewellery, especially rings. If you wish, your car keys can be locked inside our van whilst you are participating in the Ghyll Scramble.
  • Can anyone do this?
    Anyone from age 5 upwards with a reasonable level of fitness can participate in this activity. Our wetsuits and safety equipment go down to, and safely fit, a small to average 5 year old. Our sessions are tailored to specific age groups, so that everyone has a great time. We run the following sessions: Age 5+ Age 8+ Age 14+ There is no upper age limit. You will be scrambling up and down small rock steps for 2 - 2.5 hours, alongside jumping into a plunge pool, if you so choose. Anyone of moderate fitness can do this and most of our clients have never done a Ghyll Scramble before! If you have a medical condition that may be exasperated by doing this activity, please consult your doctor before participating. If you need further information on what is involved, please do contact us.
  • How old do I have to be?
    Age 5 is the youngest and there is no upper age limit - a moderate level of fitness is required. We run the following sessions to suit different age groups: Young Families Age 5+ Church Beck Ghyll Scramble Age 8+ Church Beck Ghyll Scramble & Canyon Age 14+
  • Can my children take part in a Ghyll Scramble quoted for older children?
    In some cases, yes, especially if the age is very close to what we have advertised as suitable. We want children to have a great time, with the right level of challenge that helps to build confidence, and for them to go away with a positive experience wanting more! Please do get in touch if you would like to book something with children of a younger age than recommended, or if you would like advice on the most suitable activities for your family. ​ Please note: Church Beck Scramble and Canyon age 14+ is designed and aimed at adults and teenagers only. The 8+ session will be tailored to everyone participating and has loads of challenges for children and adults included. If your child is a few years younger than the stated age, and you feel they are capable to do an activity, please contact us as we may be able to accommodate you on a private session (at an extra cost). Public sessions won't be suitable in this case, as other people who are participating in that session will be expecting a certain age range of people to be attending.
  • How long is the activity?
    It is approximately 3 hours from when we meet you in the car park to when we say goodbye.
  • What do I bring?
    A pair of sturdy trainers or walking boots to go into the ghyll with. These need to be able to lace up tight so that they stay on in the moving water. Please note crocs, lightweight water shoes or sandals are not appropriate. Swimming costume or shorts for under the wetsuit. ESSENTIAL - Lightweight Jogging bottoms or leggings (not shorts) to go over the wetsuit (to protect the legs of the suit) We have spares if you need them. Snacks and drink for afterwards if you wish Towel. Medication. Parking money/card or you can use the 'Ringo' parking app. We will send you this list again via email when you book.
  • Where do I get changed?
    You will change in the car park or in your vehicle. We provide a sheet you can stand on if you wish to change next to your vehicle. Please bring along a towel for modesty - you might find it helpful to change into your swimwear before you arrive to meet us.
  • Are there any toilets or showers?
    The nearest toilet is a 2 minute drive next to the filling station in the village (30p to use). There are no showers nearby.
  • Can non-participants spectate at this venue?
    There is a path that runs alongside the ghyll for about 200 metres until it stops at a fence. There are plenty of other paths around the area and also some shops and cafes in Coniston village.
  • How far is the walk to the activity from the car park?
    It is a 6-8 minute walk from the meeting point in the car park to the start of the Ghyll Scramble.
  • Which session should I choose?
    We ask that when you book, you choose the session that corresponds with the age of the youngest person in your group as the pace and level of the session will be suitable for them. Every session is unique and there are different levels of challenge available for groups of mixed ages. For families with children we spend more time in the main sections of the ghyll and offer lots of fun challenges. All sessions take approximately the same time. We run the following age group sessions: Families 5yrs+ - This is a fun session in the main section of the ghyll and is nicely paced for small children from 5 years old. Ages 8yrs+ - This takes place in the main and sometimes upper sections of the ghyll. There is plenty of challenge here for those that seek it - adults included! Sections used are appropriate to the group and water conditions on the day. Ages 14yrs+ For teenagers and adults only - This takes place in the main and upper sections of the ghyll. The upper canyon section is more committing. We mainly use this section with older teenagers and adults as entering the canyon has a large, and for many people intimidating jump into a narrow slot. This requires precision and a level of maturity, confidence and awareness, hence why we have set a minimum age limit. Sections used are appropriate to the group and water conditions on the day.
  • Can I bring my dog?
    Sorry, this activity is not suitable for dogs. We do have other activities that you can bring your dog such as Canoeing, Rock Climbing, Bushcraft and Hill Walking. There are plenty of footpaths around the area is you have a non participant with a dog.
  • How do I secure a booking?
    You can book most sessions online. We ask for a 20% non refundable deposit to secure your booking with the balance payable 28 prior to the date. If you book within 28 days the full balance is payable. If you can't find what you are looking for on our booking calendar or you are a large party please get in touch.
  • What happens if I need to cancel?
    If you cancel outside of 28 days from the date of your booking: We will issue a full refund minus your non refundable 20% deposit. If you cancel between 28 and 14 days before the date of your booking: We will issue a refund for 20% of the total price. If you cancel within 14 days of your booking: We will not issue any refund.
  • What happens if Path to Adventure cancels?
    We will only cancel an activity if the weather conditions or forecast make the session unsafe to proceed. If this happens we will offer an alternative activity or you can choose to have a full refund. Please note - We do not cancel if the weather is inclement, please come prepared with lots of clothing and you will have an amazing time whatever the weather!
  • Where can I view Path to Adventures T's and C's?
    You can view our full term and conditions here.

Interested in our other Ghyll Scrambles?

Click here 

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