Oak Cottage - Loweswater

Retreat to the quiet of the Western Lakes

The Cottage, and  the view up the Buttermere Valley

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Date : Saturday 14th June. Afternoon.

Place : Wasdale Screes, West Cumbria, UK.

Event : An excellent walk, one not done for many years.

and two more tops (209/210) towards Holly's final total of 214 Wainwrights.


Distance and time : 7.25 mile return trip with approx 2400ft of ascent.

Weather : Hazy to start, but a mid afternoon breeze cleared the air beautifully.

The famous view of Wasdale

with Yewbarrow, Gable, and Lingmell, at the head of Wast Water

Starting at Wood How, we crossed Lund Bridge, and the River Irt,

just a few hundred yards after it emerged from the bottom of Wast Water.

To start, the weather was quite hazy, disappointing as the fine weather had not been with us very long.

Our route took us across the valley, and apart from this slight diagonal path, was basically straight up the hillside opposite.

A steep ascent found us on the ridge, where the bracken gave way to moorland grass.

Behind is the village of Nether Wasdale.

Whin Rigg summit cairn on the left, with the summit shelter beyond.

To the right, the ridge that forms the backbone of the Screes extends to Ill Gill Head.

Beyond are the hazy outlines of the central fells.

What a peak !! So big it hid the binoculars . . . Not a bad lunch-spot either.

The first of the big ravines, with the Wasdale Hall Youth Hostel far below.


Broken Rib and Adam Crags, with one of the wider scree gullies below.

Fine overhanging rocks gave excellent views down to the lake.

Ann on an alternative outcrop, with Yewbarrow beyond.


The head of Wasdale from the last of the big crags, High Iron Crag I think.

Gable in the distance.

From Ill Gill Head summit (or just beyond) you can get a view down to Upper Wasdale, and the Central Fells.

Kirk Fell, (presumably with our friend Andy on it ) is the rounded peak in the centre.

Burnmoor Tarn, isolated and high on the fells between Wasdale and Eskdale. The peak is Harter Fell.

To the right hand (southern ) edge you can see Burnmoor Lodge, seemingly in good repair.



Our return trip was a reverse of our outward journey, though we didn't actually follow the cliff edge this time.

The mountain has two distinctly different aspects,to the left smooth, to the right rugged. The top is level enough to allow a group of small tarns, which were a great relief to our two retrievers on this hot day.

Far in the distance, through the clearing hazy, the Isle of Man was becoming more visible.

The afternoon breeze had worked wonders, and by the time we returned to the lake the view was a million times better.

The haze had gone, and the colours burst out like the best of any summer day.

Wasdale, though not artificially raised, still provides water for the people and industries of West Cumbria through this pumping station on the shores of the lake. Wainwright quotes that the hot air from the ventilation grills would make a great place to dry out on a wet day.

No need of that today, except that the lake swim proved rather colder than expected . . . the warm sun doing the job instead.

Parting shots . . . the Central Fells from the lakeside . . .

and here a panorama including Middle Fell and Red Pike behind.

Peace and tranquillity . . . 6pm


Technical note: Pictures taken with a Cannon IXUS 400 Digital camera.

Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.

This site best viewed . . . with the eyes.

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