The view of Ashness Bridge with Derwent Water and Skiddaw Fell beyond has been seen on a gazillion postcards. Standing white, on the fellside behind you, is Ashness Farm. Between school runs the farmer, Anne Cornthwaite, runs hardy Belted Galloway cattle, local Herdwick sheep and rare-breed pigs, while welcoming guests to this friendliest of farm B&Bs. The location is a walker’s paradise. Anne makes mouth-watering Cumberland rum butter to a family recipe. Layer lavishly on fresh bread for a slice of heaven in heaven.
Walks (approximate times, one way):
Surprise View 30 minutes
Watendlath Tarn one hour
Lodore Falls and Bowder Stone (2000 tons!) 1.5 hours
High Seat (608m) and Thirlmere (its water reaches Manchester via a 96 mile aqueduct a day after leaving the lake/reservoir) three hours
Watendlath Tarn, Dock Tarn, Greenup Gill, Langstrathdale, Borrowdale (Royal Oak pub), Bowder Stone, Lodore Falls (six hours, circular)
A great family walk, with stunning colours at the moment, is up by Brockle Beck to Castlerigg and across to the Stone circle. From there head down the former railway line along the banks of the river Greta and back to Keswick. Currently there is also a good exhibition on the history of the Greta at The Theatre by the Lake.
A breathtaking autumn walk to the summit of Helvellyn, the third highest mountain in England at 3117 feet, 950m. On a crisp, clear autumn day the walk to the summit is truly exhilarating and awe-inspiring.
A moment to escape from the busy world, lose oneself in your own thoughts and marvel at the incredible views and landscape: the 360 degrees panorama of the Lakeland fells; the mist gently hovering over the tranquil lakes and lower fells and crags below.
The ascent to the summit, starting from Wythburn car park, one of the shortest routes, is steep yet extremely rewarding and this return walk, suitable for families, can be accomplished in less than four hours. On reaching the summit, the lofty heights above the clouds truly take your breath away, along with the cold, crisp air. If you’re lucky you might experience snow underfoot, allowing for a quick snowball fight and a well deserved cup of coffee (from your flask – no tea shops up here!) before beginning your descent.
For the keen walkers, ready for a bit of a challenge, the walk can be extended with a return via Nethermost Pike and Dollywagon Pike followed by a descent to Grisedale Tarn and a return to Thirlmere.
Helvellyn, starting at Wythburn car park, Thirlmere. Wythburn Car Park
Google map: bit.ly/UfXu2u
Three lakes and two passes all by local bus.
Starting and finishing at Keswick bus station, a local bus gives magnificent views of Derwentwater from above, and lakeside views of Buttermere and Crummock together with the dramatic scenery of Honister Pass and the more friendly Whinlatter Pass. By breaking your journey at the numerous beauty spots en route you can have nearly a full day out or if time is short just sit in and get a snaphshot of real Lakeland in an hour and a half! Buses about two hourly in each direction. ( And no parking problems!)
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