The Wainwright State of Play 2015

Published 7 October 2015

A cloudy, hazy view of Langdale from Blea Rigg.
A view of Langdale. Honest.

There was something missing about my recent trip to the Lakes. Langdale.

I love Langdale. It’s my favourite place in the whole of Lakeland and nothing beats ending a walk with a pint in the Old Dungeon Ghyll, or sitting outside the Sticklebarn thinking “I really must try the New Dungeon Ghyll one day…”

However this time I didn’t go. Not because I don’t have fells to do there, but because I decided I needed to see other parks of the Lakes. But there’s also a bit of me that’s concerned that one day I’m going to run out of Langdale fells to do. And that would mean I’d have less of an excuse to go there. So perhaps it’s time to give it a rest for now, but give me an excuse to go back.

This all got me thinking about how many Wainwrights I’d done in total. How was I doing in my goal to visit each of those 214 fells? And once I started thinking like that one thing was inevitable.


I like graphs. I hope you do to. Because here are some.

Let’s start with a pie chart. Here it is, showing that I’ve bagged a whopping 22% of all Wainwrights! Yes I’m a quarter of the way there. Given my first fell was done in 2010, that means at my current rate I’ll be done some time around 2040. We’ll have to see if we can bring it in, but that’s the current bet.

Now lets get out a stacked bar chart.

This chart looks more depressing however. It’s a stacked bar chart showing the number of fells bagged per guide book. And it shows some real differences.

There’s good news. I’ve done over half the Central Fells and the Eastern Fells, the latter helped by me unintentionally doing a lot of them in July.

The Southern Fells are also not bad.

But the rest? Oh my. There’s a lot of work to do.

It’s perhaps inevitable. Most of the my Lakes trips have ended being based in Ambleside and area, and despite having a week in Keswick this year, my fell count for the northern areas wasn’t high. And as I haven’t spent much time near Patterdale, well that’s why that’s so low.

But at least I’ve done some of them. Just look at the Western Fells. Oh my. Not a single fell in the can yet. Now that is a sight to worry about. Along with the question of the logistics of that part of the country.

But hey, at least I’ve got 15 years to worry about it.

This article was updated 21 November 2019 following a discovery of an error in the underlying data.

Have your say