Lets start by saying we love Ullswater. Its one of our favourite places to head out on the Bluefins in the Lake District.
A lot of the shots we feature on our Instagram page are from the Pooley Bridge end of the lake but mainly because we love to stay at Waterside House (see our review of the site here) and as much as its beautiful paddling down here, for us, the real magic is at the Glenridding end of the lake. Its just stunning paddling where the fells just drop into the lake at this end (see image above).
There are lots of launch options from the large car parks near the Steamer ferry to the laybys just outside Glenridding. Personally we prefer to launch from the just outside of Glenriding on one of the many little pebble beaches near the laybys but be aware that parking can be difficult to find. In summer dont be surprised to find them all full by 8am.
One thing to note though is, from our experience, the topography of the lake changes dramatically from one end to the other, but looking at the land around it this should be expected. Launching from campsites like Waterside house, the depth increases gradually and you can be quite a bit from the shore and still be able to stand up. At the Glenridding end its very different and within yards of the shore the bottom can just drop away. On a still day when the water is clear it can be like paddling off a cliff! Just be aware if you are paddling with children or those less confident in the water.
Finally if you are at the Pooley Bridge end the lake then turns into the River Eamont and flows down to the car park in Pooley Bridge. Its a beautiful stretch of river and very tempting to paddle down but, if you need to get back to the lake, just be aware of the current and your capability. It can flow quick quickly some days and take a bit of effort to get back upstream.
Paddle Board - Bluefin Cruise 12. For more information on the board click here