The Lake District is one the main English strongholds for these tufty eared creatures, and they can reliably be seen around Ullswater. Under threat from non-native grey squirrels, a huge amount of voluntary conversation effort goes into helping red squirrels hang on in Cumbria. There is new hope for them in the shape of elusive pine marten; research is showing that reintroducing these woodland predators to the Lakes might help red squirrels by their preference for the bigger and more easily caught grey squirrels. You stand a good chance of spotting reds at Aira Force.
The herd of red deer centred on Martindale, on the south-east shore of Ullswater, is one of the oldest in England. Red deer are the UK’s largest land mammal, with stags weighing up to 190kg. They are quite easily seen, especially at dawn and dusk any time of year, but become almost unavoidable during the rut (Autumn) when stags’ bellowing calls echo over the valleys as they compete to control groups of females.
It is important to stay a reasonable distance from the deer at all times, however if you drive from the hotel to Hallin Fell, you can approach by foot. Parking at Martindale church, you can head to the ridge on the left of the valley. Climbing up the east side, above Gowk Hill, you may find a good spot there to watch a listen.