Hill passes of the Lake District were originally used by people in one valley travelling to another nearby without having to go many miles around a steep ridge of intervening hills. Historically, in the Lake District of northwest England, travel on foot or by pony was difficult because of the region's steep-sided valleys so tracks across the ridges were created taking the easiest route over passes – often, but not always, via a col. Since Roman times long-distance travel had tended to be along ridges. From the 19th century these passes and ridge routes were brought back into use when recreational hill walking become popular. Forty hill passes within the Lake District National Park are listed here, using criteria for selecting the major routes.
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