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Date & start time: Christmas Day, Thursday 25th December 2008. 1.15 pm start.

Location of Event : Honister Hause NT car park, Cumbria, Uk ( NY 225 135 )

Places visited : Honister, Dram Road, Black Star, Fleetwith Pike and back.

Walk details : 3 ml, 1100 ft of ascent, 2 hours 50 mins including Christmas (packed) Lunch.

Highest point : Fleetwith Pike 2,126ft ( 648m).

Walked with : Gareth, Ann and the dogs, Harry and Bethan.

Weather : Dry and good viability. Cloud over the central fells but several nice sunny breaks in it.

Merry Christmas to one and all.


A Christmas Day walk with our son Gareth as an alternative to that midday 'stuff-yourself-silly' feast.

We opted for a walk up Fleetwith Pike, starting at Honister, and ate later.

The area was not exactly crowded for a bank holiday !

It was a great day, clear visibility despite the cloud hanging over the Central Fells.

We drive up the valley and pause for this photo of our lunch spot . . . Fleetwith Pike.

Winter is a great season for looking at trees . . .
. . . be they Oak, Beech or Scots Pine.

I can never seem to pass the Pines at Buttermere without the urge to jump out for a photo.

For me this is one of my ' Favourite British Views'.

Mellbreak from the same spot, looking down the length of Buttermere.

Honister. We parked at the NT car park at the hause prior to the start of our walk.

Daily mine tours . . . but not today.

One very happy vegetarian Christmas Chicken.

Taking the mine track a short way till we branched off to the Dram Road footpath at the Mountain Rescue Collecting Box.

Thanks to everyone, sales from the Loweswatercam 2009 Calendar will have raised £50 or so for Cockermouth MRT.

[ Advert: . . . 25/12/08 . . . very few copies left . . . order while you can ]

At the turn in the path, a view across to the Yew Crag Quarries on the other side of the valley.

A wider shot emphasising the sunshine . . . and the various tracks that served the slate quarries on that side of the fell.

We join the original route of the Dram Road (mine railway) as it rises through a small cutting.

The peace and quiet was broken by the sound of a machine . . .
. . . A green flying machine with a big fan on it's roof.

That'll keep the girls happy ;o)

Looking up the old track at Ann and her big son.

Perhaps it would have been better to place Ann higher on the slope than Gareth rather than the other way round. He's not that big !

Reaching the top, Gareth tries for one more step than was actually necessary.

What do you mean . . . what's with the hat . . . it's Christmas !

From the head of the Dram Road we cut across to the mine road, passing three of the very few people we saw during the walk.

Helvellyn in the distance is just cloud covered. The fells look cold in that deep shadow.

Gareth and Ann walk up past the stone obelisks alongside the track to the top quarry.

That's my boy !

Moving across to the edge of the crags we look down on the top of the Via Ferrata route as it emerges from the tunnel.

The top workings and it's many old buildings.
The Bothy has seen better days and the wooden roof has collapsed.

Looking across to Robinson and Grasmoor, there's some nice sunshine on Robinson Crags.

There's a fine view down Buttermere Valley today.

Harry and Bethan on Black Star summit, the highest point of Honister Crags.

" What was that sound Harry ? "

Just Gareth taking a text message I think.

Despite the low cloud, Helvellyn seems to be getting brighter.

Harry finds a stone in the pool and receives a black snout for his efforts at retrieving it from the water.

Don't they ever feel the cold ?

The sun is out but that water must be near freezing.

Gareth entering into the Christmas Spirit as we pause at the summit of Fleetwith Pike.

( Thanks to the kind gentleman who took the photo today )

Sitting, we find Harry very attentive . . . .
. . . and are soon joined by Bethan.

No wonder . . . it's lunchtime.

Christmas sandwiches followed by mince pies, with a candle on mine.

No ... I couldn't light it either ... too breezy !

" Happy Birthday to you, Happy birthday to you . . . "

Try lighting the candle by moving your cursor over the picture !

Looking round before we left

the sunshine has moved rather than spread to Grasmoor and Eel Crag.

Shafts of sunlight over distant Yewbarrow, as seen over Black Sail Pass.

We made our way back to the quarries.
Sunlight catches the rock and an old boiler in Dubbs Quarry.

On our return, the sunshine has spread across the whole of the distant Helvellyn Ridge.

On the way down the mine road we cross to the slate plaque . . .
. . . dedicated to Celia Weir by her boys.

The plaque, not a memorial as Celia is still very much part of the Honister Story,

has been inscribed with the words of Rudyard Kipling's poem "IF"

We leave the crags behind and return to the car at the end of a delightful Christmas walk.

- - - o o o - - -


Technical note: Pictures taken with with my Cannon G7 or Ann's Ixus 75 Digital cameras.

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

This site best viewed with . . . A mince pie and a nice red hat.

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December 2008 We wish you a Merry Christmas

Previous walk - 14th Dec 2008 Misty Dodd and Derwent Water

A previous time up here - 27th March 2008 The Via Ferrata at Honister