Oak Cottage - Loweswater

Retreat to the quiet of the Western Lakes

The Cottage, and  the view up the Buttermere Valley



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Time and place : Wednesday 15th Oct 2003 King's How / Bowder Stone, Borrowdale.

Occasion : An afternoon walk with Ann and the dogs.

Walk details : only 2.4 miles but 1250 ft of ascent, as can be seen below.

Weather : Sunny and warm. Visibility excellent.

We decided on an afternoon walk due to a forecasted cold morning wind and because we were late getting up !!

King's How, Borrowdale, was a walk we had been meaning to do for some time, and were encouraged by Andrew's recent photos. AW describes it as "exquisitely lovely, in Autumn a golden ladder to heaven, and simply must not be missed. Sacrifice any other walk but not this !" . . . . what encouraging words.

But travelling from Loweswater you must also pass the other gem of Buttermere Valley . . . .

The Buttermere Pines with Haystacks behind.

Our walk started at the Bowder Stone car park which is overlooked by King's How itself.

As we skirt round under the fell, a first view of Castle Crag.

Climbing rapidly up the "golden ladder", now a beautifully matured pitched path up through the woods,

we get a first view back to Derwent Water and Skiddaw.

As we climb so our view expands to include Catbells to the left, and the wooded slopes of Brown Dodd to the right.



Autumn is the time of changing colours of the trees and the bracken.

It is also the prime season for fungi.

To our left the summit of Ether Knott, the third of the Grange Fell group, can be seen through a gap in the trees.


Grange Fell is a collection of rocky summits surrounded by Birch woods and clothed in a heavy coat of bracken.

In mid October, after the first frost of the year, the changing colours are delightful.

Nearing the top the full vista of lower Borrowdale is set out below us.

Our view has expanded to include Maiden Moor above Catbells, and Bleaberry Fell on the opposite side.

As we turn for the last climb, the hazy outline of Great End can be seen through the gap of Low Moss.


Kings How was purchased and named as a memorial to King Edward VII in 1910

The plaque near it summit was erected by his sister Louise, Queen Victoria's daughter.



The final heather covered ridge.

The Derwent water Launch closes in on the Ladore jetty

and the traffic can be seen passing the Borrowdale Hotel far below.

Relaxation at the top, as Ann looks over to the Helvellyn ridge in the far distance.



Looking south, the high peaks are partially hidden by the afternoon sun, but a close up reveals Great End, Scafell Pike and the tip of Scafell itself.



The village of Rosthwaite, with Holly intently studying something in the heather next to her.


As we make our way down, this tree provides a foreground for distant views of Blencathra.

An equally steep descent took us back to the road and from there it was an easy path to the Bowder Stone.


The Stone is a glacial erratic, that is, a stone carried in by during the Ice Age and not native to the area.

Finely balanced, it has a ladder to climb to the top, but underneath there is the smallest of holes where two people on opposite sides can hold hands ... provided they don't mind getting a bit muddy.

Persuade your girlfriend to do it with you and she'll be your partner for life (apparently !!)


Not one for holding hands, Holly prefers to climb to the top.



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

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

This site best viewed . . . with late afternoon sunshine.

Map courtesy of Anquet Map Systems

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