Blogs from Lake District, Cumbria, England, United Kingdom, Europe

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Europe » United Kingdom » England » Cumbria » Lake District November 1st 2012

With a gap in the weather, it was only right to head back north for a few days' walking. Thursday dawned wet and windy ... possibly not good for walking. However, after a late start and an early lunch (sat in the car with the wind lashing the rain against the soft-top), the sun suddenly came out and the snow-capped mountains became visible - and inviting. With British Summer Time over, there was an hour less in which to complete a walk in daylight and so there was only enough time to cover just the two Wainwrights. Few people were out on such a lovely day - I had the snow cover all to myself. Despite the wind, which blew the hail and snow with such force that it stung, the views from the summits were ... read more
Whiteless Saddle - difficult to walk across in the strong wind!
Grasmoor - from Wandhope
Crag Hill - from Wandope

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Cumbria » Lake District September 1st 2012

At the beginning of September seems like an odd time to go to the North of England, what with the weather being so famously dire in the Autumn, but peace and quiet was the name of the game. Grasmere is a tiny village in the Lake District, nestled on the bank of one of the smaller lakes (Grasmere, in fact). There are two main draws to the village for myself and my betrothed, the first of which is a shared love of English Romantic poets. Wordsworth himself lived in Grasmere for more than ten years, after becoming homesick for England while in Germany. He described the village as "the loveliest place that man hath ever found." You can visit Dove Cottage, which is the lovely cottate he lived in. There's lots of info on www.wordsworth.org.uk including ... read more

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Cumbria » Lake District August 29th 2012

I was in two minds whether to venture into the mountains this morning. The mountain forecast indicated low cloud, persistent rain, chance of thunder, cold and free cream cakes on the summits. Over breakfast, I was pleased to see that the rains had come overnight and the morning was warm. I was also pleased to see the mountain tops from my table. I was disappointed to realise that there would be no free cream cakes on the summits as I'd made it up. Even so, I was still dubious about embarking on a walking trip with such a forecast and so, I drove to Martindale and opted to climb Hallin Fell first - only an ascent of 525' and almost a mile. From the summit I'd be able to check the proposed route for the day ... read more
The route up Beda Fell with Hallin Fell in the background
2.31: Beda Fell (Steel Knotts in the background)
View over Patterdale

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Cumbria » Lake District August 28th 2012

Yesterday wasn't good. The forecast turned out to be very accurate and the rains just continued. The day was literally a washout and spent on Keswick high street - ironically taking in the outdoor clothing shops in an effort to buy further wet weather gear! Having bought all that was necessary, it was off to the little coffee shop in Grange for a well-deserved strawberry cream tea! Today was a little better ... and a day spent on the High Street, i.e., the highest Roman Road in England. It was also where six Wainwright's would be climbed. Parking in Martindale, the first little issue was not getting lost on the climb up towards Steel Knotts. The little wooden Footpath sign clearly pointed along the stone wall and many others had clearly passed ahead, but sadly, the ... read more
The Old Church nestling below Steel Knotts
2.31: Beda Fell from Martindale
The RAF practicing over Beda Fell

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Cumbria » Lake District August 26th 2012

Today was supposed to be the best weather of the holiday weekend. Looking back, I guess the forecast wasn't wrong as the only thing we didn't have was snow. A breakfast grapefruit, oranges, yoghurt, muesli, bacon, beans and toast was taken in beautiful sunlight. Shortly after getting in the car and driving to Loweswater, the clouds rolled in and the sun moved elsewhere. On parking, the rain was like stair rods and, with no wind, was there to stay. The thirty minute wait in the car whilst the rain abated was made more pleasurable by the Cuban music coming from the CD. Finally, with a break in the weather, I rushed out to the boot and put on full waterproofs and my walking boots. In the driving rain, I left Fangs Brow Farm and set off ... read more
7.30: Burnbank Fell - towards Blake Fell
Not the official summit cairn!
Oh good, can't see a thing!

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Europe » United Kingdom » England » Cumbria » Lake District August 25th 2012

The weatherman said today, there’s a slight chance of rain, I had to laugh to myself ... It was raining when I got up, it was raining when I wandered into town for breakfast, it was raining when I was buying my lunch, it was raining all day! The day dawned ... ... rain fell ... ... waterproofs were donned and two more Wainwrights were earmarked for climbing. Due to the inclement weather, two of the lowest were to be attempted - not difficult but, with the cloud base being so low, two offering the best opportunity. And so, in the driving rain, I drove to Thackthwaite and parked up by the side of the road and made my way past a notice imploring the red squirrels to drive carefully, through a farm yard and onto ... read more
Low Fell beckons
7.33: Low Fell (with Crummock below)
7.32: Fellbarrow

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Cumbria » Lake District August 11th 2012

I left Dorset on Saturday, August 4th, taking the train from Wareham up to Waterloo Station in London. From Waterloo I transferred to Euston Station by tube and then took a Virgin train up to Penrith in Cumbria. I'd found the Virgin train online. It was actually cheaper going 1st class on Virgin than 2ndclass on National Rail, AND I had free WIFI and snacks! From Penrith I took a bus to Keswick and then a taxi on to Hassness House on Lake Buttermere. It was a long day. I'd heard of the British group "Ramblers", which I thought was the equivalent of the American Sierra Club group. Although founded about 60 years ago, Ramblers has since split in two, and I discovered (after the fact) that I'd actually booked, not with a Ramblers walking group ... read more
2-Hassness House
3-view Lake Buttermere
4-below House

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Cumbria » Lake District August 10th 2012

The penultimate day of this particular trip dawned clear. The penultimate breakfast of this particular trip was enough to ensure enough energy to get me up the initial climb - 1300'! I can't believe that the time has gone so quickly. The weather must be joining in celebration as it dawned clear and hot. I set off from the Honister car park, climbing in the already hot sun towards the summit of Dale Head. This was my fifth attempt this week to have a clear summit of Dale Head and the windless morning was looking promising. Various stops for a sip of water en route were met with hot, humid, lifeless air. Before long (well, roughly 40 minutes), the summit came into view. Shortly after, the view came into view. In the mist, I'd not realised ... read more
Dale Head Tarn
Water getting ready to plummet into the Newlands Valley
6.13: High Spy (with Dale Head)

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Cumbria » Lake District August 9th 2012

I cannot believe that I only have one more walking day left. The weather turned out to be incredible and is forecast to be clear of rain until the Monday, at least. When like this, I know that the views are going to be amazing - and I wasn't disappointed. No wind, blue sky, green grass, fresh air - what more could I want! Over the past few days, I'd noticed that the heather was beginning to flower, so therefore decided to wander up to Hay Stacks in the hope of a great view over Innominate Tarn. So, headed straight up Scarth Gap after breakfast, stopping at the top for a water break, due to the already hot sun. Then it was time to scramble to the summit of Hay Stacks. Sure enough, I wasn't disappointed ... read more
High Stile, Red Pike and Dodd
Robinson
7.21: Haystacks

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Cumbria » Lake District August 8th 2012

Dawn was wonderful. After the last few days, the early morning light was amazing. A little mist but no more thick black cloud over the mountains. Today was also the day on which I was moving accommodation and so it was not going to be possible to walk great distances. So, after breakfast, I packed and transferred my bags to the car and set off to the new digs. Once my chores were done, it would be 12h30 before I was able to head off into the mountains. Parking at Newlands Hause, I decided to head up to Knott Rigg, a simple ascent of 700'. The warm sun was a delight as I climbed to the summit with its minuscule cairn made that tiny bit taller by my own addition. Once at the summit, it made ... read more
Fleetwith Pike
Red Pike and Dodd from Newlands Hause
Newlands Valley




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