Lake District Oct. 2017

Another October, another boys week in the Lake District with the “Navigator”, Andy and me.

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The Navigator and Andy

The “Navigator” and I set off from West Wales to meet up with Andy in Chester and then on to Cumbria. We left the M6 at Shap taking minor roads to the east of Bampton Grange and parked up by spot height 257 and started to walk up a farm track at Scarside.


From there we walked below the woodlands and then on to the limestone pavement. Fungi was in abundance especially of the waxcap group. More of those were seen throughout the week.

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Limestone pavement

This was a short walk to stretch the legs after a long car ride and we weren’t far from our cottage at Helton. This apparently is the oldest building in the village.

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Sunday 15/10/17

This could be described as a two centre walk or a figure of eight walk with lunch in between.

 Route 1

Route 2

Our morning walk was along  Swindale soon leaving the metalled road and onto rough ground first between stone walls and then on to open ground. The beck was straightened in the past to gain more land but the bends have now been reinstated.

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We crossed to the beck and gradually climbed to view a number of waterfalls which were in  a good flow. At the top we returned to the car via the bridle path shown on the OS map.

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Om our way back we passed a group with five  border collies which is frankly greedy especially as I just want one!

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Three of the five collies

Back at the car we had lunch and decided to continue walking over to view  the Naddle Valley where we walked through Naddle farm now a base for the RSPB. It was hoped we could make a circuit by crossing the Haweswater Dam but there is no path to cross this feature. Instead we walked back to Naddle bridge and returned to the car along the water board road and the then the public road along Swindale.

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Haweswater dam

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The old and not so old Naddle Bridge

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Monday 16/10/17

This was the week including the storms of Ophelia and Brian and the winds today indicated care should be taken if any height gained. We parked in Pooley Bridge in a side street as the official parking was far too expensive and walked down through the village and onto the lake side of Ullswater.

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A misty morning

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A ferry under repair


With all the rain of recent and current days it was very wet underfoot especially across fields. The route zig zagged up to Arthurs Pike which gave good views of Ullswater and down to Glenridding.

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Lunch on the way to Arthur’s Pike

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Looking down on to Ullswater

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The cairn at Arthur’s Pike


The wind was strong and we had to hold on to the cairn for safety and the return back to Pooley Bridge was away from any edges.

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That night a tree came down in the garden and a partial collapse of a stone wall!

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Storm damage.

Tuesday 17/10/17

The forecast was not looking good and so a low level walk was decided on. The route was from Pooley Bridge to Aira Force with a bus trip back to the car.


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Crossing a muddy field near Bennethead

It was very wet and muddy throughout and there was evidence of the strong winds as we walked through a wooded area.

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It would be useful if a similar sign was at the other end as well!

Our route took us around Gobarrow Fell which on a better day would have given fine views of Ullswater and the surrounding hills.

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The waterfalls at Aira Force were magnificent with lots of visitors taking in the views.

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Looking down onto Aira Force

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Aira Force

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A big tree!


Since I last visited here the National Trust have a new visitor centre and a welcome cafe where we stopped for some refreshment whilst waiting for the bus. Unfortunately our Welsh bus passes are not valid here and we had to buy the very expensive tickets.

Wednesday 18/10/17

The forecast was looking much better with clear sky and little wind and so we were heading a little higher, with Andy going higher again.

We drove to the south end of Haweswater to walk up the ridge overlooking Riggingdale. It was in this area that England had its only golden eagles but the last one was seen in 2015.

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The first part of the walk is alongside the lake to The Rigg and then its up, up and away with hands on rock in some places.

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The way around to The Rigg

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Blea Water with High Street above

The weather had brought out more walkers than we had met since Saturday including a couple from Belgium with a husky or malamute attached to the man with a harness and a long lead. This did look somewhat dangerous when they reached a steep section of the climb but they made it. There was one hilarious interval when they reached the flat boggy area of Caspel Gate when Olaf the dog tried to jump across a gap but belly flopped into the sticky mud. It would have been funnier if the owner had been pulled in!

We had lunch here and the “Navigator” and myself decided not to continue up to High Street but young Andy still full of puff continued on up and we would meet up again at the car. Our way down was via Blea Water and Blea Water Beck where again the waterfalls were in full flow. Underfoot the paths were sodden.

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Blea Water

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Blea Water Beck

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Waterfall on the Blea Water Beck

We had thought that Andy would come down the Nan Bield Pass but he  retraced his steps down the way we went up.

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Ye olde sat. nav.

Thursday 19/10/17

Our destination today was Howtown and Martindale and the surrounding hills.

Route (there is a small part missing towards the end)

We walked  anti clockwise around Hallin Fell and then alongside the lakeside path to the foot of Scalehow Beck.

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The Coombs

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The way down to Howtown

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Looks like fun


From here we headed uphill  and eventually onto Birk Fell. Martindale is known for its deer herds and we could hear the bellowing of the stags and in the distance we could see the hinds and a couple of stags.

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Climbing up near the beck

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Looking down towards Glenridding

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Our way back was between the gap between The Knight and High Dodd. The former, when viewed from one side is similar to our Welsh Cnicht.

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The Knight

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Discarded antlers

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A signpost by Royal Appointment?

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A bridge too far.

Friday 20/10/17

The week has flown and today is our last walking day and not too far from base.


We parked in the hamlet of Burnbanks which was built for those involved with the Haweswater reservoir.

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We walked on the north shore away from the dam until we reached Measand beck and its waterfalls.

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These signs are much better than the modern wooden type.

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Looking down Haweswater

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Coffee break

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More waterfalls

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Even more

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Crop circles?

From here we struck uphill and onto Bampton Common. We lunch near Ulgill Gutter  and then towards Broom Bank crossing Howes beck near the dam. We had a coffee break in the Howes and then on into Bampton and followed the lane back to the car.

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Juust so Andy’s wife can see he can handle a vacumn cleaner!





Both the “Navigator” and myself  are now back from our respective holidays and it was time to venture forth again. We still had bad memories of our last walk which was a mud and bramble fest, not to mention the incident with my camera! Hopefully this walk would be less horrendous.

We parked up at Patch which is on the north side of the Teifi estuary and headed north across fields (just a little muddy) and quiet lanes to Mwnt.


Estuary mouth of Afon Teifi


Looking upriver towards St Dogmaels


Old advert on long closed garage


Ye olde sat nav.


Mwnt beach


Another view of Mwnt

This can be a good spot to see dolphins but they stayed hidden today nor did the the rough sea help.

We joined the coast path here and headed back to the car.



When the Welsh coast path was opened there was unfortunately a dispute with one landowner and the area immediately overlooking Cardigan Island is off limits. You can of course pay a fee to visit the Farm Park.