A Rydal Ramble

Walk Date – 30th October 2016

Distance – about 6 miles

Weather – mild and dry, no wind, very overcast



02 Cottages along the lane

Its a mild but very overcast day and there was little point in taking a walk across the fells as you will see, so we drove over to Rydal to have a walk alongside Rydal Water, then on around Loughrigg Fell and back to the car park at Pelter Bridge.

03 Further along the lane

Further along the leaf carpeted lane and more leaves fluttering down gently as we walked along.

04 Rydal Water

Rounding the bend at the end of the lane there is a choice of paths, we opted for the lower lakeside one today hoping to see some good reflections in the still water.

05 Misty fells

Low cloud covering the distant fells and the reason we had a low level walk today. The reflections in the water were somewhat spoiled around this point and I felt sorry for all the photographers who had set up cameras and tripods to capture them. You can just about make out the source of the ripples over to the right, two people in a canoe, who just couldn’t get their paddling technique synchronised and were, despite the flailing paddles and lots of instructions to each other, were making no progress whatsoever.

06 Nab Scar across Rydal Water

Nab Scar across the water and some decent enough reflections despite the amateur canoeists. If you aren’t interested in looking at reflections you might want to skip the next few photos as I got a little carried away …..

07 Ditto

Another view of Nab Scar with traffic on the A591 rushing by below it.

08 Ditto

Nab Cottage, Heron Island and Little Isle below Nab Scar.

09 Reflections in Rydal Water

There isn’t a hint of any breeze and the water begins to settle after the canoeists depart. The two white blobs on the water are swans, both of them still fast asleep, perhaps they forgot to put their clocks back last night.

10 Ditto

A close up of Little Isle and the sleeping swans. A little more light and a better camera would have helped today because the autumn colours are just beautiful at the moment.

11 Looking back along the path

We spent ages along the shore line before eventually continuing along the path which is now rising away from the water’s edge and leading us on to the Loughrigg Terrace path. Unsurprisingly, there were lots of people around here today.

12 Looking across Rydal Water from the path

I had a look back over the water as we progressed along the path to check on the swans, yep, still fast asleep.

13 Helm Crag across the autumn leaves

A misty Helm Crag beyond the lovely colours of Penny Rock Woods.

14 Silver How across Grasmere

We’re now on the Loughrigg Terrace path with a lovely view down to Grasmere and the subtle tones of Silver How beyond it.

15 No rest here for the weary

“Yes I know, but you should have seen me thirty years ago.”

16 Grasmere

From the terrace path you get a lovely view along Grasmere.

19 Entering Deerbolts Woods

At the end of the terrace the path rounds a bend and leads to one of the entrances to Deerbolts Woods.

21 Onwards through the woods

There was no-one walking along here, everyone had turned off the terrace path, before it came to an end, to climb up Loughrigg Fell so we had a very peaceful walk through here.

24 Sign on the gate

We leave the woodland path by this gate …..

25 Looking back from the gate.

….. from where I took this shot looking back along the route. From this point there is a short section of road walking …..

26 An entrance to Hodge Close Arboretum

…. along which we passed one of the entrances to High Close Arboretum, originally planted in the mid 1800’s by a wealthy Yorkshireman, Edward Wheatley-Balme, and now owned by The National Trust.

27 Further along the road we cross this stile

Just a short walk further down the road we crossed this stile to take the path to Loughrigg Tarn. Just behind me was this …..

28 'I'm waiting for something which I don't think is going to happen'

“I wonder how much he wants for it?” one of us asked. “Don’t even go there” the other one of us replied.

29 A hidden arbour behind the path wall

Thoughts of spending a small fortune ‘doing up’ an old wreck had dissipated by the time we reached a break in the wall. We took a peek round the corner to find this hidden arbour declared to be – “A perfect spot for camping.” by one of us. Camping not being my favourite activity I carry on along the path.

30 Leaving the path to go down to Loughrigg Tarn

Here we leave the road and take the path across the fields which leads us to …..

31 Lovely Loughrigg Tarn

….. lovely Loughrigg Tarn and not a canoeist in sight.

33 All set up for a day's fishing

Dad and son had set up for their day’s fishing, apparently dace, eel, perch, pike, roach, tench, and trout are resident in the tarn but none of them seemed to be biting while we were there.

35 Searching for more tasty snacks

They weren’t the only ones fishing though and this Canada goose had obviously spotted something down there which took its fancy.

37 The humps and bumps of Loughrigg FEll

A close up view of Loughrigg Fell from our lunch spot.

38 Loughrigg Tarn again

Even on such a dull day as this I think it would be hard to find a nicer picnic spot than Loughrigg Tarn.

41 Leaving Loughrigg Tarn

A quick look back at the tarn as we climb back across the field to cross the stile at the top, a few steps across the road to another stile, and once across that we’ll be making our way up to and around Ivy Crag.

42 Unusual gate sneck

Along the way we pass through a gate which opens by releasing this unusual sneck, skilfully demonstrated by our qualified snecklifter. I don’t know if its still being used, but the word snecklifter used to apply to something else entirely, in connection with a visit to a pub. I know some of you will know exactly what I’m talking about.

43 Cloudy fells in the distance

As you can see the path is very well used and you’d have to try really hard to lose your way along here. The cloud over the fell tops is still hanging around and with no wind to shift it along it the chances of a sunny afternoon are looking remote.

44 Another look over the wall

I managed to get a foothold on the wall to bring you a closer look at the countryside beyond and you should be able to see the Langdale Pikes from here. Alas they are lost in the cloud, but at least the lovely autumn shades of the trees provide a pleasant enough scene.

45 The lower slopes of Loughrigg Fell

Now we’ve arrived at a place where it is very easy to lose your way. We’ve reached the lower lumps and bumps on Loughrgg Fell, there are paths going in every direction and one lump looks very much like all the others. The two walkers over on the left seem to be heading for the summit so, no matter which path they choose, all they have to do is keep going uphill. There’s no difficulty for us either today, we’re just going to continue on the current path as it snakes over to the right.

46 Following the path across to Brow Head

A look back at Ivy Crag from the beck crossing.

47 A look back over Loughrigg Fell

Looking back across Loughrigg Fell. The path running diagonally across is the one being used by the two walkers I mentioned earlier.

48 Cloud covered Red Screes in the centre with Low Pike in front of it

We’re heading over towards Brow Head now and in the centre of the shot is a cloud covered Red Screes, with the top of Low Pike just visible in front and to the left of it.

49 From the same spot a look over to Wansfell Pike

From the same spot over to the right of the tree is Wansfell Pike, I wonder if that is as popular a walk today as this one. There were crowds of people coming up here today.

50 Making our way back to the road

We make our way down Brow Head, past the farm and on to the road leading back to Pelter Bridge.

51 Walking alongside the River Brathay with Wansfell Pike on the skyline

A close up of Wansfell Pike as we stroll back alongside the River Rothay.

52 The entrance to Fox How

Passing the gates of Fox How, I tried to get a shot of the front of the house but it was impossible, because there were so many trees in the garden all I could see were their thick trunks and very little of the house.

54 A Storm Desmond casualty

One of Storm Desmond’s casualties further down the lane …..

55 The view from the other side

….. which must have made an almighty noise and mess when it fell, notice the new section of wall opposite the remaining section of the trunk. The railings here and for a good way further down were twisted and mangled so more trees than this one must have fallen during the storm.

56 The stepping stones have lost a few steps

Another Storm Desmond victim, some of the stepping stones, which are indicated on the map, have been swept away and have still to be replaced. Some could be seen lying on the bottom of the river.

57 Low Pike across the busy A591

We’re almost back at Pelter Bridge, the traffic is roaring along the busy A591 and there’s nothing much to be seen beyond Low Pike behind it.

58 Nab Scar again

Turning the camera to the left and we’re back below Nab Scar, and the lane leading to the car park is now packed with cars.

59 Pelter Bridge

Pelter Bridge, which we’ll soon be driving across to take a left turn onto the A591 to begin the drive home. This was the best view I could manage as the place was thronged with people and cars.

60 Back to the busy car park

There were just a few cars here when we arrived this morning, now look at it. The lane behind me is packed with cars with some parking skills leaving a lot to be desired. There was a bit of a wait to get out of the lane as three cars at the bottom of it were giving the rest of us a display of the cha-cha-cha. They eventually sorted themselves out and we were able to go on about our business. In keeping us down at ground level today the low cloud proved to be a blessing in disguise, we had a thoroughly enjoyable and gentle ramble through some lovely autumnal scenery which gave us just as much satisfaction as any walk over the high fells.