Date & Time: Wednesday 14th June 2006. 1.15 pm start. ( Map ref: NY 398 206 )

Location of Start : Off road parking on Park Brow hill, beyond Dockray Village, Cumbria, Uk.

Places visited : Aira Force and Gowbarrow.

Walk details : 3.86mls, 1,250 ft of ascent , 2 hrs 55 mins.

Walked with : Ann and the two dogs.

Weather : Warm and sunny with virtually no breeze.

Parking courtesy of the National Trust half way down the Park Brow hill.

 

We combined this morning's walk with a second half day walk to Gowbarrow and Aira Force.

We decided to park at the small roadside car park half way down the hill which gave surprisingly easy access almost directly to the main falls. This shorter route missed out the main car park and tearooms, but as we had lunch with us that was not a problem.

Aira Force is a fine waterfall set deep into the cleft of rock and has a viewing bridge above and below, from where you can get fine views of Aira Beck as it plunged down towards Ullswater.

   
The Main falls from the viewing area.
The bottom bridge through the trees.

 

   
The top bridge, clear of people for a while.
Top to bottom, and the deep plunge pool.

 

After viewing the falls and dodging the people we continued up stream,

past delightful sections of shaded woodland and clear pools. There's a good path all the way up on both sides of the river.

   
Is it an otter ? No it's Harry getting cooler !
The top falls and its reflection in the pool.

After the morning walk on Great Mell Fell where we saw nobody, the first part of this walk was a real culture shock.

It was a world of crimpelene skirts and white trousers, of garish shirts and fashion clothing, of sunbathing and disposable barbecues.

A world where dog mess is left in plastic bags half hidden behind trees or in a shallow rock cavity - Why do people do that ?

The town mentality of tidying up after your dog is excellent if you dispose of the bag in a bin or take it home, but to bag it and leave it as people have done here makes it a moronic function totally devoid of thought and appreciation for its consequences out in the countryside - end of rant !

However, "civilisation" was soon left behind as we continued on up the valley and started our climb towards Gowbarrow summit.

Here's the view of the lake as we climbed above the tree line for the first time.

The bracken is growing fast on the path above the wall.

Give it a couple of weeks and the path will be a lot more enclosed.

The path up was effectively the one from Dockray Village,

following the fell wall which led almost directly to the top.

 

Blue skies, good visibility and lunch

were our rewards as we made the top.

 

Behind Ann is Great Mell Fell

where we had been earlier this morning.

Lunch with a view.

Arthur's Pike, Bonscale Pike and Ullswater from Gowbarrow.

Clough Head, Skiddaw and Blencathra

looking north west from the trig point.

Hungry dogs

looking south east from the sandwich box.

Our return route would be around the traverse on the southern, Ullswater side of the fell - first we made our way down to the old Shooting Lodge.

Sadly this has fallen into total ruin in the fifty years since AW wrote his guide books and drew his sketches showing it with it's walls and slate roof.

   
A mountain boardwalk over a short ravine.
The Lake Steamer making passage for Patterdale.

Yew Crag and its excellent cairned viewpoint down the lake.

Low Birk Fell and Place Fell opposite, with St Sunday Crag, Nethermost and Dollywaggon in the distance.

The full panorama from the cairn itself. - Ann's red rucksack by the memorial seat adds the dash of colour on the right.

The seat has the rather brief carved inscription - A Thank Memorial 1905 -

   
Back along the high level traverse
The view over Ullswater

In the picture above, and also here, is the distinctive house known as Lyulph's Tower.

It has a standard back to the building, but the front facing the lake has castellated stonework giving the appearance of a castle.

   
Rounding off the circular walk , back to the main falls . . . .
and all that remains is to climb the steps to the car at the end of the day.

 

- - - o o o - - -

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 . . . room to get away from the crowds.

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Previous walk - 14th June 2006 Great Mell Fell and the Cotton Tails (this morning)

The previous time up here - 3rd Sept 2004 - Gowbarrow with Andrew Leaney ( a link to his great site )