Date & Time: 4th May 2006. We take our visitor on a tour of the Lake District, by car and on foot.

Places visited : Buttermere, Honister, Derwent Water, Grasmere, Elterwater, Three Shires Stone, GreyFriars, Brim Fell, Coniston Old Man, Swirl How, Great Carrs, Hardknott Fort, Boot, Wasdale and home.

Walk details : 1.15 pm start 7.7 mls, 2,850 ft of ascent , 5 hrs.

Walked with : Helmut Hudler, Ann and the dogs.

Weather : Great weather with blue skies and fluffy white clouds.

Helmut arrives at Blackpool Airport ~ photo courtesy of John Paterson.


Helmut normally lives in Austria , but he is over in the UK for a holiday. He has been a regular contributor to the Online Fellwalking Club and we are delighted to offer him accommodation during his stay, and to give him the chance to experience the English Lake District more fully. He has been here before, but all his recent visits have been through the medium of our own and other members photo web sites.

Now we have the opportunity to show him the place for real !

First morning, Helmut was still working on European Central Time so it was an early start.

Early enough to see our occasional garden visitor.

It was a great day so we decided on a drive around the Lakes,

starting with Buttermere and the famous Pines at the head of the Lake.

At the head of the valley - Honister Slate Mines.

We stopped and looked across to the disused Yew Crag Quarry on the opposite hillside.

Derwent Water and the Barrow Bay landing stage

looking towards Skiddaw at the other side of the lake.

The landing stage with Car Bells in a passing shadow behind.


Thirlmere and Grasmere came and went, and we drove over Red Bank and into Langdale.

Ahead was Lingmoor fell, with its wooded slopes hiding another slate quarry, and Wetherlam the high fells in the distance.

The Britannia Inn and Elterwater, a favourite hostelry of locals and tourists alike.

It was a hot day, and it just happened to be about eleven o'clock

so "elevenses" would be a suitable thing to introduce Helmut to.


We stopped for a cool drink and a coffee.


It was like being on holiday ourselves too !


On now into Little Langdale.

The countryside shows no sign of the snow which was covered the valley less than eight weeks ago.

A glimpse of the Langdale Pikes through the Blea Tarn valley,

but we were heading left, up towards Wrynose Pass, on our continuing tour of Cumbria.

Helmut at Three Shires Stone.


A brief explanation of its origins was made easier by Helmut's excellent command of our language.


He has had a medical background and his ability to read and speak English has been helped by having to study for his profession.


It certainly puts our ability to speak a second language in perspective.

Time now to get out of the car and to enjoy the fells.

Staring from Three Shires road side.
Climbing towards Wet Side Edge.

Helmut had asked to walk as many of the high fells as possible, so we have decided to make a start with the southern fells of the Coniston area.

Harter Fell ahead as we climb
Wrynose Bottom and Cockley Beck.

A delightfully muddy tarn is found to cool the dogs as we reach the ridge.

Ahead are the summits of Great Carrs and Swirl How.

As we climbed the view improved. Behind us now was Pike o' Blisco and Red Tarn, and all the way back to the northern fells.

Visibility today was slightly hazy but otherwise excellent.

A diversion over to Grey Friars was made to catch the view over to the Scafells.

Grey Friar has a very rock summit, quite different to the moorland ascent so far.

The summit of Grey Friars, with the Scafell Range behind - what a view !

Click here or on the photo for a larger and detailed panorama.

This was therefore Helmut's first Lake District Wainwright summit climbed.

Being the gentleman that he was he insisted on taking our photo.

His first summit photo must be on his camera I think.

Gray Friars was also a good place to stop for lunch.

Bethan and Harry suddenly became very attentive.

The "Matterhorn Rock" on Grey Friars, a striking five foot pinnacle of rock sticking up out of the summit plateau.

Skiddaw was visible in the distance, as was High Raise and the Helvellyn fells.

One lunch was complete it was time to make tracks to the second summit of the day.

here we contour under Great Carrs on a reasonable footpath.

Brim Fell under a fast moving patch of cloud was our next target.



On the way we passed Seathwaite Tarn

and a kind Herdwick sheep stayed still long enough

to contribute a more interesting foreground for the photo.

Coniston Old Man, a formidable mountain

overlooking the town and the lake, both of which share the name.

Levers Water

A natural lake but one which has been enhanced by a small dam, providing water and power for the old Copper and Slate mines of old.

Low Water, nestling beneath the summit of the Old Man itself.

The popular path down can be seen, as can the present day slate quarry.

Summit number three for Helmut, Coniston Old Man

with its Trig point and cairn.

The spectacular Summit cairn and platform

with that now familiar Scafell backdrop behind.

Low Water, Levers Water, Wetherlam and Coledale Moor

line up in the afternoon sun.



Time to retrace our steps northward

back across Brim Fell summit towards Swirl How.

The cairn off Brim Fell on the path back.


Swirl How, with a delightful yet complex cairn built around the jagged summit rocks

Looking east towards Wetherlam.

Time for tea

or rather the last of the sandwiches we didn't have for lunch . . .

before walking the short distance round to Great Carrs summit.


The memorial to the Halifax Bomber Crew

has been recently enhanced by a slate plaque naming the crew members who died all those years ago.

Back down towards Three Shires

and chance for the dogs to get dirty again before reaching the car. Not the best plan !

It had been nearly five hours since we last looked down

on this view of Cockley Beck soon after the start of our walk.

(see photo above)


In that time the sun had now moved round sufficiently

to reflect directly off the water.


Once back to the car

we would be driving down the valley road below.


Cockley Beck Bridge

at the point where the River Duddon turns more southerly on its way to the sea.

Up over Hardknott Pass and down to Mediobogdvm (Hardknott),

the old Roman Fort at the head of Eskdale.

Retrospective - Hardknott Pass and our road down from the fort.

Helmut often commented on the size of our roads compared to his. He had been driven over one of our more spectacular ones today.


Slightside and Scafell, Scafell Pike and Ill Crag in the late afternoon sun

taken from the Roman fort northern gateway.

Wasdale, and a brief glimpse of the classic Lakes view

but due to our stop in the Boot Inn, the sun had set and evening was closing in.

Refreshment after a warm day.
Tomorrow another full day in prospect.

Hopefully we introduced Helmut to the Lakes in a rather special way.

We managed to drive all the way round, returning by the west coast road.

Tomorrow John would take him on a bike ride. He was eager for more fells. We had obviously not tired him out yet.


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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 . . . all four of the O.S. Maps of the Lakes.

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