A long Weekend in the Lake District, Part One
For those of you that don’t read the comments, or the articles, I live in the northern part of The Lake District. It goes without saying that it is a beautiful part of Britain. Some would say the most beautiful but I wouldn’t be so presumptuous. I thought it might be nice to pretend I was a visitor and construct a long weekend, specifically a late October one, which others might enjoy indulging in.
If you arrive on a Friday morning and get settled in your “digs” then what is left of the daytime is for walking. There are countless walks, much depends on how fit you are and how much time you have. A nice start and only a couple of miles would possibly be a trip to Grasmere for a short walk through Penny Rock Wood and down to the mere side. Then back along the riverside walk to White Moss Car Park (where you have conveniently left your vehicle).
If you haven’t brought provisions, the assumption being that you will be self catering within a 7-10 mile radius of Penrith, then a short drive along the A591 will bring you first to Ambleside and then Windermere. Booths supermarket and the largest of the Lakeland stores are behind the Windermere Railway station, with ample parking available. Lakeland holds a myriad of delights for those that like that sort of thing. If it isn’t for you, leave the wife (or partner if you are more “enlightened”) and wander down to the side of Windermere (very touristy) or into one of the many pubs selling a good range of local ales, you are on holiday after all.
To return to the Penrith area you can either follow the A591 back towards Keswick or, if you are feeling adventurous, take the A592 from Ambleside over Kirkstone, the highest driveable pass in the Lake District. There are wonderful views to be had on a clear day and a very hairy drive in store if the cloud is low. The top is 1,500 feet above sea level, if you are very lucky you will be able to look back the way you have come and see the Irish Sea in the far distance. There is also an inn which has been there since 1496 that is refreshingly un-touristy, even if it is full of tourists. The food is wholesome and very reasonably priced and there is always a decent brew or two to be enjoyed, perfect for a late lunch.
The drive down the pass from the inn is a real pleasure, it does take a bit of concentration though and you have to watch out, as always around here, for The Herdwick sheep. The rewards are more than ample as you drive through Patterdale and Glenridding then along the side of Ullswater and on to Aira Force (worth stopping for an hour or so for a walk up to the falls, which can be spectacular) then onto Penrith or whichever village or lodge/caravan park you’re staying in.
Friday night is yours to choose to do as you wish, if you’ve bought some Cumberland sausage get them cooked and eaten then head to the nearest local, they all need a bit of support, but save a bit of energy for the days ahead.
- Postcard 2 Festival Penrith and the Droving
- Postcard 3 The Lakes Distillery by bus
- Postcard 4 The Ullswater way
© Coloniescross 2017