Booking and Payment
A booking-in system has now been established and works well. Walks are booked by email (to email@example.com) with just the walk number and the surnames of all those booking-in.
The only additional information required is if you do not have a car and would welcome a lift to a walk that is not starting in Ulverston, or connected by public transport. While we cannot guarantee a lift we will endeavour to arrange this. This is separate to car share (see under ‘Car Share’ below) however the advice there, regarding payment for Car Share, would be appropriate.
If you are subsequently unable to attend a walk please email us to let us know so that anyone on a waiting list can be offered a place. The programme will indicate when a walk is full. The walk fee will be waived again in 2023 but will return at £3 per walk from 2024 to cover our expenses.
At the start of the walk, the leader will check that no one has symptoms or has tested positive. We suggest walkers try and maintain at least a 1m distance from others, and in particular when negotiating gates, styles and at rest stops. If entering an enclosed space a mask may be appropriate. Where sanitizer is available it should be used.
General Data Protection Regulation and Registration
In line with this recently introduced legislation we now ask our participants to sign a registration form, given by the walk leader before the walk commences. This asks you to let us know whether or not you give your permission to be included in photographs that may be taken either by the walk leader or other participants. Photographs may either be used on our website, social media or in a slide show that we produce at the end of the festival. If you do not wish to be included in any photographs please indicate this on the registration form.
We are insured as a Group affiliated to The Ramblers with public Liability cover of £5,000,000. All those attending a walk, who sign in on our Registration Form, are counted as members for the duration of their walk and are covered under our insurance, in case, for instance one walker in attempting to help another actually caused an injury. Failure to sign the Registration Form would invalidate this cover.
If you are joining us on your own we will also give you a card, for you to record a next-of-kin contact, which you place in a top coat or rucksack pocket in case you have an accident.
Car sharing from Ford Park car park (see map under FIND US tab) is an option for most walks that don’t start from Ulverston. It is an informal arrangement designed to reduce parking at the walk start and reduce car use. A walk leader will endeavour to be there to oversee it but this may not be possible when the walk leader is not local to Ulverston.
Note: this is different to a request for a lift by someone without a car (see under ‘Booking and Payment’ above.)
Those bringing dogs should not engage in car share.
Car sharing or just following another car may also be appropriate for those unfamiliar with the area.
If you are given a lift it would be appropriate to contribute towards the drivers fuel costs – the amount will depend on the number given a lift and the distance but £5 is probably a reasonable gesture. If drivers do not wish to be paid we recommend passing it on to the walk leader and it will be donated to Mountain Rescue.
Walks are graded Easy, Moderate, Moderate Plus and Hard. Easy should be suitable for anybody, including those who do not regularly walk any distance, and are usually linked to some other interest. Moderate are longer walks, up to about 5 miles, with reasonable going underfoot. Moderate Plus might be a longer flat walk or a shorter walk but with more difficult going or moderate accent. Those walks graded as Hard include significant ascent. However, they should be well within the capabilities of an average hill walker and will be conducted at a pace comfortable for all those attending. If this is your first WalkFest walk, and you are not a regularly fell walker, then you are advised to start with modest ambition and work up to the harder walks.
Every walk will have 2 walk leader, both capable of leading the walk and who have both recced the walk. The lead walk leader will have carried out a risk assessment and this can be found, along with detailed instructions for walk leaders, under the INSTRUCTIONS FOR WALK LEADERS tab.
Rights and Responsibilities
All the walks are led by experienced volunteer walk leaders. Whilst they will take all possible steps to ensure the safety and comfort of the group, your comfort and safety is your responsibility. Please also be considerate of other members of the group, to facilitate a good experience for all.
Walk leaders reserve the right to refuse participation to anyone not considered adequately clothed or equipped for that particular walk.
Walk leaders reserve the right to alter or cancel a walk if they consider the conditions might compromise safety or comfort.
We kindly request that you accept the pace of the walk that the leader has set. Any participant walking ahead of the leader to the extent that they cannot be seen will be considered to have left the group. Similarly, if a walker needs to leave the group for a ‘comfort stop’ the back marker or another member of the group should be told.
If a participant wishes to permanently leave a walk, the walk leader personally must be informed.
The festival organisers cannot accept responsibility for any injury, damage or loss to an individual or possessions resulting from participation in the festival but you may be covered under our insurance as a member of the Ramblers for the duration of the walk. Further details of this cover are available on request.
Children under 16 years of age must be accompanied by an adult.
Dogs are allowed on all walks unless it is indicated otherwise in the walk description in the programme. The inclusion of dogs is at the discretion of the individual walk leader.
Those bringing a dog should not use the car share option.
All dogs must be kept on a lead whilst walking on a public highway and on private land with livestock, or as requested by the walk leader.
How to Stay Safe and Enjoy the Fells
For those who are not regular walkers, here are a few notes on how to stay safe and enjoy the fells. While our walk leaders will endeavour to lead a safe walk for all their walkers, there are some things which are up to the individual. Be sure that you are fit enough for the walk you choose. Look at the length, height climbed and general description. A 6-mile fell walk should not be underestimated.
Next, note the weather forecast for the day. Our weather can change very quickly.
Dress and come equipped for the walk chosen and the predicted weather with full water and wind proofs, hat and gloves, a spare warm fleece or jumper and, preferably, walking boots (with tread and ankle support). Wool or man-made fibres tend to be good, cotton has virtually no insulation properties when wet and should be avoided (no jeans!). Consider if you sprained an ankle and had to wait for help. A walking pole may assist balance on rough ground.
Finally, eat well before the start and snack throughout the walk. Your leaders will cover other appropriate aspects of looking after your safety with regard to the route and managing the group.