Geotrails & Views

A selection of geotrails, interesting geological views and sites in Cumbria.

Checkout the Geological Sites Map for details of publically accessible interesting geological sites.

St. Bees Geotrail NX 961 118

This coastal route is part of Wainwrights Coast to Coast. But take your time to look at the fascinating rocks and features. There are several LGS sites along the way. Find out more from the geological sites map and search for Fleswick, Birkhams and St Bees Beach. Download a 12 page guide by Mike Dewey here.

St Bees: Cross bedding
St Bees: Info board at Birkhams Quarry
St Bees: Submerged forest

Storth Geotrail SD 478 807

This is a lovely 5km route with 18 waypoints (including several LGS sites) exploring landforms and geology around Storth and Sandside in the Arnside and & Silverdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). Starting at the Ship Inn on the coast. Section from St John’s Cross to Throughs Lane showing the likely configuration of beds below ground level. Download a 16 page guide by Peter Standing here.

Storth: Vertical fold
Storth: Erosion of shale gives a natural cutting
Storth: Striations & fossils

Kendal Limestone Geotrail:

Selected rock exposures with grid references, accessible on walks from Kendal town centre. Download a 21 page full colour guide by Richard Wrigley from Westmorland Geological Society here.


Eycott Hill Nature Reserve NY 394 301

Eycott Hill’s geological story goes back almost 500 million years. Ancient lava flows are sandwiched between older siltstones and mudstones and younger limestones. A leaflet can be downloaded here and links to educational resources here.  Eycott is an SSSI, a National Geological (GCR) site and a Local Geological Site and managed by Cumbria Wildlife Trust. OS map 90.

Eycott: Lava
Eycott: Jointing
Eycott: Sink hole

Some other interesting geological sites and views.


Stephenson Ground.

SD 24549463  Broughton Mills

A spectacular 5 star site, although a long walk across boggy ground, on the high fells on open access land. The hexagonal columns have been used in the walls and stream weirs in the surrounding fields. BVG Stickle Pike Tuff


Great Asby Scar SSSI

NY 584574 Orton

Some of the best and most extensive limestone pavement in the UK. Fine out more by looking at the geological sites map and searching for Great Asby. Great Limestone (GL)


Iconic Rock – Shap Granite.

Shap granite is seen in many erratics across Cumbria and is a useful indicator of ice movement. The Quarry itself is still a working Quarry with no public access. Shap Granite.


Donkey Rock.

SD 210 868 Broughton

This impressive 10m high quarry face, certainly has a wow factor! It is a little piece of the sea floor as it was some 425 million years ago. These 'bumps' are called flute casts. Windermere Super Group.


The Bowder Stone.

NY 254 164 Borrowdale, Keswick

Its sheer size and how it balances on one corner, has long made this an iconic image of the Lake Ditsrict. A rock fall from Bowder Crag, 150 meters above, is its probable source. Borrowdale Volcanic Group


Kendal Town Geotrail.

Leaflet "Kendal Building Stones" by  Geoff Brambles, available here and from Kendal Museum

This is a short mostly level walk around Kendal, pointing out the variety of features in the stones used to build Kendal.

Monday, March 1st, 2021 at 8:36am
Here is a flavour of what the Nature Recovery Network is all about. During the years ahead, a lot more of this kind of initiative will be possible as new laws and policies lead to changes on the ground.
Friday, February 5th, 2021 at 11:37am
We think John Martin's picture of mating Australian flatworms (as shown below) in the UK is unique. Share this post to anyone you think might be able to tell us differently. CumbriaBDC photo
Thursday, January 28th, 2021 at 2:50pm
We got sent some interesting photos from John Martin this week!

Do you know what this species is and why it’s important we know its distribution?

Comment below what you think, and we’ll release a species of the week next week with the answers.
CumbriaBDC photo
Wednesday, January 27th, 2021 at 5:28am
Hot on the heels of awards success at @CIEEMnet #CieemAwards Plantlife's @katefpetty is delivering a free online talk celebrating the accelerating #RoadVerges campaign as part of #SpringIntoAction. Book in now to avoid missing out! CumbriaBDC photo