The Cambridgeshire Lodes comprise six historic manmade waterways connecting fen-edge villages to the River Cam. They have a fascinating history and their origin and purpose has been much debated by archaeologists. The Lodes were most likely designed for water management, ensuring that excessive spring and summer water did not flood the rich grazing land between the villages and the River Cam. They were probably built by the monasteries at Ely and Ramsey which in the late Saxon period acquired land in this area.
Wicken Fen, one of Europe's most important wetlands, supports an abundance of wildlife. There are more than 8,500 species, including a spectacular array of plants, birds and dragonflies. The raised boardwalk and lush grass droves allow easy access to a lost landscape of flowering meadows, sedge and reedbeds, where you can encounter rarities such as hen harriers, water voles and bitterns.
We have taken all responsible steps to ensure that these routes are safe and achievable by people with a reasonable level of fitness. However, all outdoor activities involve a degree of risk. To the extent permitted by law, Sustrans accepts no responsibility for any accidents or injury resulting from following these routes. Walking and cycling routes change over time. Weather conditions may also affect path surfaces. Please use your own judgement when using the routes based upon the weather and the ability, experience and confidence levels of those in your group.
To make sure everyone gets the most out of their time by the water, please ensure that you follow the Towpath Code.