Coniston
photo of Coniston looking North
Coniston Valid HTML 4.01 Transitional
General Description
Use the drop-down menu above to view STILL photography if available - VIDEO will be shown on each "Site" page if available

Coniston is another attractive and relaxing lake with plenty of parking and good access to the shoreline and beaches. The beaches are of shingle on the east side, while the west has boulder strewn beaches. She is a nice sized lake with plenty for the diver to get his/her fins into.

For those with other Interests
Coniston Ferry Co. operate along this lake if you fancy a relaxing trip with the gentle drone of the engines pulling you along.
Shoppers and bargain hunters will find Coniston village has some nice trinkets.
But if you are looking for a little more adventure up in the hills then head for the east shore, get those boots out and march on!
Donald Campbell and his Bluebird spring to mind on Coniston, and the drama surrounding the "Lady in the Lake" discovery by the nearby local diving club. In February 2004 the Rigg Wood site was closed to divers for two weeks while the Manchester Underwater Search Team hunted after more evidence to the case. Although the body was discovered at Bailiff Wood which is not too far away. If you find yourself at the northern end of Coniston you might want also want to try your hand at fishing for the big trout at Hawkshead trout farm.

Places to Stay
Guest house's and Hotel's can be found at Coniston village and down the side streets.
Try "Stay.co.uk" or alternatively check some of these links > Hotels and Guest Houses Youth Hostels for Families etc.

How to get here
Using your SatNav
Hate to tell you this, but your trusted Satnav will probably mess up on you - they dont like sending you down "B" rate or lesser roads which is what this area often has, especially when traveling between Coniston and Windermere, so use your eyes and follow the road signs. e.g. if you are at Ambleside and tell the satnav to go to coniston - you'll end up on a 40 mile detour down Windermere's "A 592" then over to the A590, then A5084 then A593 before arriving at Coniston village. When all that was needed was take the B5286 or A593. Yes, an "A" road can take you to Coniston passing Hodge Close but it goes through a town and Satnav does not like this!!
At least Tomtom doesn't. - Have fun as always :-)

Diving the West side: From M6 come of at J36 and follow the main A590 passing A592 turn off that takes you to Windermere - stay on A590 until you see A5084 / Torvor / Coniston lake sign.
Coming from Ambleside take the A593 to Coniston.
or if at the Millom end take A593 to Coniston.

Diving the East side: As above BUT you'll need your OS map to find the yellow "unlisted" road running along the east side of Coniston. Basically from the southern end you turn off the A5084 at Lowick Bridge heading for High Nibthwaite.
If you are at the northern end of Coniston, in Coniston village, look for the sign B5285, follow for circa 300 metres then turn off (right) onto the first road you see - you are on your way for Monk Coniston and the east side. Well done - Pheeew.

Detailed Information for Divers

Viewing Freshwater Life
Trout, Perch, Minnow and the usual eels abound this lake. great fun in the shallows at night if you fancy a night dive. During summer, go in after 8pm for the best show.

Main Attraction
On the eastern shore, diving Bailiff and Dodgson wood offer the best dives in this lake.
The western shore is shallower so perhaps plan for this to be your second dive for the day either in the Brownhowe area which lies in the South west end of the lake or go for the Coniston yacht club where you will be greeted by Roger (if still here), who has dived this lake and others for the past 28 years!

Dive Planning Help
No special permission is required to dive Coniston but be aware that an active ferry service runs the length of this lake. Yachts, Windsurfers, and canoeists are everywhere on this lake so use of an SMB will not go amiss. Wise divers should contact the Head Boatman.

Notify the Head Boatman - Coniston Boating Centre, telephone (01539) 441366 giving info on where and how many will be diving. He will then notify all other water users to keep clear of you! Better to be safe than sorry.

Disabled divers will find Monk Coniston has perfect access, the eastern shore is very good. Western shore access is difficult for all.
Map of Coniston click to dive Oxen House Bay click to dive Coniston Yacht Club click to dive Brown Howe click to dive Brown Howe NT click to dive Birk Knott click to dive Low Peel Near click to dive non designated parking area click ot dive Rigg Wood click to dive Dodgson Wood click to dive Bailiff Wood click to dive lay-by between Machells and Bailiff wood click to dive Machell's Coppice - 2 click to dive Monk Coniston - 1
Clickable map! >
No Special Permission Required. but advise you to contact Head Boatman.
Disabled divers will find access is good on the eastern shore.
Walkers will have a wonderful day!

NEW Oxen House Bay - aka -Oxness cottage (site 13) with video, is now complete as of April 13th, 2012.
Who's the nearest for Dive Air?
British Sub-Aqua Clubs:
Furness Sub Aqua: branch is based at Barrow in Furness.
Dalton Sub Aqua: branch is based at Dalton in Furness.
Kendal + Lakes: branch is based at Kendal Leisure Centre.
Altitude, Visibility, Temperature, Torches
Altitude and Depth:
Lake Altitude at a mere 161 feet (43 metres) so you are at near sea level. Your Maximum depth in this lake will be found at circa 50 metres on the eastern side, straight out from Dodgsons wood.
During summer
Visibility: 3 + metres.
Temperature range is 12 to 14 degrees Celsius.
During winter
Visibility: improves to 7 metres.
Temperature range is 5 - 6 degrees above zero.
Torches: If you are planning to pass the 15 metre mark you'll need a good torch.
Thermoclines: None observed.
If new to freshwater diving: this is not the most ideal introduction but it is better than some other lakes. access on the eastern shore line is excellent for disabled buds.
Communication intel
phone icon Mobile phones do not work in the dive area. Do test your mobile for signal strength, you may be lucky with your service provider.
phone icon Public phones: At Coniston village and at some of the Parking areas on the eastern shore. Please check.
More useful Information for buddies
For the latest on the weather: "Scuba Weather Report"
For more air details see "Dive Clubs & Air".
Note: The above page's will remain open while you click to gather info.

Nearest toilet: You'll find these at Coniston village, Monk Coniston, Machell coppice and BrownHowe, along with picnic areas within the car parks.

Car parking charges:
phone icon Reporting thefts or finds - Police: 0845 330 0247

Many lakes are within a ten mile or so radius of Coniston. Hodge Close quarry, Banishead Quarry, Grasmere, Windermere, etc. If you find Coniston is kicking up a gale, check out the Hodge Close site or Grasmere.

The Coniston ferry service: View their website at http://www.conistonlaunch.co.uk

For Angling or Canoeing etc. contact relevant agency - see links page for non divers.
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