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Fell Top Conditions on Tuesday 11 December

Readings from Helvellyn summit at 11:55

Temperature plus 2.7°C Maximum wind speed 33.1mph Wind chill minus 4.8°C Average wind speed 19.3mph Wind direction S

Monday’s skittering of snow on the highest fells has thawed so the good news (for those who dislike winter conditions) is that the Lakeland Fells are free from snow. The bad news (for those who relish winter conditions) is that the Lakeland Fells are free from snow and ice. With drizzle and cloud enveloping the fells today (above 500m to 700m depending upon aspect), ground conditions are very damp. As the summit temperature is just above freezing, it would only take a slight drop in temperature for ice and verglas (thin ice) to form on rocks and paths which walkers ascending the highest fells on Wednesday should be prepared to encounter.

Full winter clothing (waterproofs, plenty of warm layers, hat & gloves), footwear and equipment (including a headtorch) are essential for anyone venturing out onto the fells as the summit windchill at midday was minus 5 degrees. With visibility in the cloud down to 15m at times, a map and compass and the ability to use them in such conditions are also essential.

Lake District Forecast for Thursday

Dry with long clear or sunny spells, some cloud is likely especially across southern and central fells at times. However gale force southeasterly winds, despite easing later, bring a risk of a severe chill effect.


Very good or excellent out of cloud with some good panoramic views of surrounding lakes and fells expected, especially in the north.

Hill cloud

Around 75% across southern and central fells with occasional cloud above about 600m, otherwise near 100%.


Southeasterly 40-50mph, with gusts around 65mph over ridges and summits, slowly easing 20-25mph.


  • Valley: Around zero Celsius at dawn and again during the evening but rising to plus 5 Celsius by day.
  • At 800m: Around minus 3 Celsius.
  • Freezing level: Around 300m.

Outlook for next few days

Friday 14 December

Another dry day with long clear or sunny spells. Early and late frosts. Strong southeasterly winds. Freezing level 300m or less.

Saturday 15 December

Potential for a very wintry day although details uncertain at this stage. Risk of southeasterly gales or severe gales and heavy snow, giving blizzard conditions. Milder later. Freezing level 300m but rising above summits by evening.

Sunday 16 December

Showers or longer spells of rain likely, perhaps turning to snow over higher summits. Southerly or southwesterly gales possible. Freezing level just above the summits.

An overview to the weather in the Lake District


The summer season in the Lake District actually runs from March to October. The driest period runs between March and June.

The weather is renowned for changing rapidly and rainfall is a predominant feature. The wettest area in the Lake District is known as Sprinkling Tarn which receives approximately 5000mm of rainfall every year!


The wettest months run from October to January.

Snowfall typically falls from November to March. The valleys of the Lake District receive around 20 days of snow and 200 days of rain per year.

Winter is actually a beautiful time of year to enjoy the spectacular views.

It’s important to stay safe during the Winter period, especially if you are considering exploring the fells. If you’re a fan of the Lake District in Winter, why not register on one of our Winter Skills Courses? Learn more