Driving along this picture perfect scene is a breathtaking experience – but drivers don’t dare take their eyes off the road.
That’s because this beautiful yet misleading stretch is actually dubbed the UK’s most dangerous, with its precarious gradients making it a hard route to navigate.
Officially the A592, it connects Ambleside in the Rothay Valley to Patterdale in the Ullswater Valley via many sharp bends, so drivers are urged to keep their concentration and not be distracted by the stunning views.
Its beauty is so great that visitors have rushed to speak about it on TripAdvisor. One, all the way from Montana in the US, said: “Don’t miss this drive through an amazingly beautiful landscape”.
She described the “interplay of sunshine and clouds on the landscape” as “mesmerising”. And it appears local experts take no risks with the Kirkstone Pass in winter.
It’s reported the stretch is often closed at random periods, often when bad weather is forecast, to prevent accidents on the steep incline.
Our sister site, LancsLive reports: “Despite the beautiful scenery over the Lake District, drivers may not even be able to see it because of the thick mist throughout the colder months.
“Kirkstone Pass’ steep and narrow features make the road very dangerous to drive on in adverse conditions, and the road is actually closed when there are bad winter conditions because of the risk it poses to drivers.”
So what makes it such a nightmare to drive along? It’s merely the varying gradients, with one being a flat stretch of road, and four being almost as upright as a wall.
The area is also home to the Kirkstone Pass Inn – the third highest pub in England. The road from Ambleside to the Inn is actually known as The Struggle by locals who are all too aware of the road’s difficulty.
But one reviewer, who posted about his drive along the road in 2019, said other people had likened the drive to a “Top Gear stunt.”
He said: “When I read some of the reviews on here I wonder if the reviewers are talking about the same place, with their notes of having to exercise extreme caution and comparing the drive with the best of Top Gear stunts!
“There is no doubt that there are some challenging passes to drive in the Lake District, such as Hardknott, Wrynose, Newlands, Honister etc., which are all single track roads with very narrow parts.
“Kirkstone Pass is nothing like that and is a full-width, two lane road. Obviously, as it goes up quite high, you sometimes get mist at the top, so you need to drive with care, but other than that it is an easy and very pleasant drive with beautiful scenery to enjoy.”