What Are The Wainwrights? And Why Have We Chosen them?
These are 214 English peaks found in and around the Lake District National Park. These "fells" (as they are known locally) are shown and described in the seven pictorial guides written by Alfred Wainwright from 1955-1966.
A popular challenge for trail runners and hikers is to summit (also known as peak-bagging) all of the 214 summits in their lifetime. Wainwrights are located across the entire Lake District and come in a number of heights, shapes, and sizes. The highest is also the tallest in England, Scafell Pike at 978m, while the smallest is Castle Crag at 209m.
There is no criteria required for a mountain to be a Wainwright, it was a choice by Alfred Wainwright himself on the prominence in the landscape.
As a brand, we were forged in the fells in 2003 and have both our headquarters and brand store (called The Forge) located at Mill Yard, Staveley, within the National Park. We do much of our product testing, including that of our world renowned footwear grip, in the Lake District and, as a team, are helping ensure the fells, mountains, trails, and paths remain protected for decades to come.
As a business, we continue to strive to be more sustainable in everything we do and in November 2020 outlined our new goals relating to this. The three key goals are Durability(extend the active life of our products), Impact (reduce our environmental footprint and Support(enable sustainable lifestyles in our community and beyond). As part of the Support goal, we have donated proceeds from sales to both Fix The Fells and Cumbria Wildlife Trust.
History Of The Wainwrights
Between 1955-1966 Alfred Wainwright wrote seven pictorial guides covering all 214 Wainwrights. They give you information on routes he took when summiting the fells, as well as small hand-drawn images made during his hikes.
These pictorial guides cover all the major fells like Scafell Pike, Skiddaw, Blencathra, Helvellyn, and Bowfell, as well as lovely first-timer peaks such as Latrigg, Troutbeck Tounge, and Helm Crag.
Which such an impressive array of fells, it was only a matter of time before someone decided to link them all together and complete them as fast as possible in one go. The challenge was first taken on by Alan Heaton in 1985. The record is now held by inov-8 ambassador Paul Tierney, who completed all 214 peaks (covering an approximate distance of 328 miles) in 6 days, 6 hours, and 5 minutes in June 2019.
Our Top Picks
Our Previous Involvement With The Wainwrights
In June 2019, inov-8 ambassador Paul Tierney set out on an epic adventure to summit all 214 Alfred Wainwright Lake District peaks in one go. His goal was to try and beat the record time of 6 days 13 hours and 1 minute, set five years earlier by fellow fell runner Steve Birkinshaw.
Needing to cover a distance of approximately 318 miles and ascend the equivalent height of four times Mt Everest, Paul knew this was his biggest challenge to date and enlisted the help of friends and family.
Battling sleep deprivation and everything the Lake District weather could throw at him, what transpired was a story that gripped not only the fell-running and ultra-running communities but also the wider sporting world.
WATCH THE FILM
Caution should be taken at all times when running or hiking in the Lake District fells. Only undertake a route if you are adequately prepared and fully equipped for the conditions you might face, ensuring to carry all emergency equipment. Headtorch with spare batteries, a full set of waterproofs, emergency blankets, and whistle. Please also ensure you are confident in the use of a map and compass.
Stay on the designated paths, respect the countryside, leave gates as you find them, take all your litter home, and no leave nothing but footprints.