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Date & start time: Wednesday 15th July 2009. start.
Location of Start : Giant's Grave, Blawith Fells, South Lakes, Cumbria, Uk. ( SD 257 879 )
Places visited : Blawith Knots near Broughton in Furness, Lang Tarn, Angus Tarn, Tottlebank Height and back by the Tottlebank Farm bridle way to the car.
Walk details : 2 mls, 510 ft, 2 hrs including a few canine photo calls.
Highest point : Blawith Knotts 806 ft ( 248 m )
Walked with : Sean, Connie, Ann and the dogs, Casper, Harry and Bethan.
Weather : Showery to start but clearing to a beautiful day.
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A day out in the south western fells as a result of an invite from Sean and Connie.
It just happened to coincide with the arrival of their new puppy Dougal !
We parked on the minor road from Grizebeck that winds it's way over the outlying fells behind Broughton in Furness.
I tried to set the scene here but just ended up with a stone in lots of bracken.
From the other side it made a little more sense.
The stone is the largest of an ancient stone circle known as Giant's Grave.
In the background we look basically west towards the lower Duddon Valley, Black Combe, Stainton Pike and Yoadcastle.
To the right is the sunny peak of Stickle Pike, one of the Duddon Fells.
After the hour or so journey down from Loweswater , our two dogs were pleased to be out
and spent the first few minutes going berserk !
Our companions today are Sean and his daughter Connie and the famous Casper (somewhere out of photo).
Connie's recently broken up from school and this is the first day out and walk of her long summer holidays !
It's a warm day but our shorts are already soaking from the water that was hanging on the bracken as we pushed our way up the fell side.
The weather is basically fine but with the odd sharp shower blowing past on the breeze.
Visibility is good and here we can look across the Millom Estuary to Lowscales Hill and Black Combe with it's cloud.
Further round and across the Duddon Valley
is shapely Stickle Pike and Caw (the taller one with a shadow on it's summit)
The second cairn on the ascent has the Coniston Fells of Dow Crag, The Old Man and Wetherlam as a backdrop.
Team Photo . . . Casper, Sean, Connie and Ann.
Blawith Knotts has many rocky outcrops, each with it's own cairn.
This is the summit one, the top cairn of all, and the highest point we will climb today.
A full complement of dogs for this photo call as Harry and Bethan join us on the summit.
They are going to have difficulty competing with the size of Casper's tongue, especially if it gets any warmer.
Today is not just about summits though.
Sean mentions that Lang Tarn (along with Foxes Tarn on Scafell) is one of the smallest named tarns on the Ordnance Survey maps.
It is just below us here so we head down, picking a path between the bracken, in order to find it.
Almost overgrown, it is still big enough for a little combined canine bathing.
Contentment . . .
The heather blossom is starting to show . . . I'm sure it is at least a month earlier than usual.
Working our way along the high ground, we head for a large but dry tarn known to Sean's family as Angus Tarn.
Due to the general lack of rain, there's no water in the tarn today.
However our weather today did include a little rain
enough to find us reaching for a coat . . . but it didn't last.
The delightfully named Tottlebank Height
and our first brief view of Coniston Water behind Beacon Fell.
Casper stops for another breather at the top.
Bethan likewise, but she takes to the high ground.
The previous shower was the last and the forecasted fine weather has definitely arrived.
The rich blue skies make the clouds really stand out.
Our route now takes us down to the track below . . .
the bridle way from Tottlebank Farm, leading back (eventually) to the car.
Connie helps her Dad down a short rocky section.
Back at the road at the end of a fine circular walk, we look back at our first fell, Blawith Knotts.
- - - o o o - - -
Another reason for the slightly shorter walk was to enable us to visit Sean's new puppy.
At ten weeks old, Dougal was too young to join us on the walk, so we drove down to Sean's house to meet him in person.
Dougal is a young Bearded Collie, and a robust bundle of fluff !
He is from the same blood line as Sean's dog Casper,
in fact Casper is Dougal's uncle.
Already a large puppy, those feet lead us to think he's going to be a big dog too.
"Really . . . I'm going to be a great big Lion !"
Toys to distract Dougal from chewing my hand with his sharp puppy teeth.
Dougal has wonderful deep blue eyes.
Connie joins in with another of his favourite toys.
Still too young to meet other dogs, it won't be long till Sean is able to introduce him to the fells.
We wish him a happy future, joining Casper on Sean's Striding Edge site.
- - - o o o - - -
In the afternoon Ann and I make our way slowly home, taking a route back through the southern Lakes in order to visit Ulverston.
They now have a statue to their famous son and his working partner who did so much for early film comedy.
Ulverston is also proud of another of it's attractions . . . the Sir John Barrow Monument on the Hoad.
- - - o o o - - -
Whilst in Ulverston we added to what was an already busy day by visiting the Crystal Glass factory.
The visitor area at the factory allows you to take a closer look, as the staff create their works of art in glass.
The glass blower collects a ball of molten glass from the furnace behind . . .
. . . and places it in a mould at his feet, before blowing down the tube and expanding the glass,
forcing it to take on the shape of a basic wine glass or in this case a whiskey tumbler.
His colleague then works the shaped glass as it cools cutting it free of the tube and sending it on it's way for further processing.
In another part of the factory a young lady polishes and finishes the glass ready for sale.
- - - o o o - - -
Having purchased several replacement glasses which match ones we have used (and broken) over many years,
we turned for home . . .
Our route took us back up the length of Windermere and through the busy town of Bowness.
There are a lot of people about, on this the first week of school holidays.
By the end of the day we would have driven right round the Lakes, from the west coast to Blawith Knott, from Barrow to Ulverston,
from Windermere to Loweswater . . . now I think it's time for tea !
- - - o o o - - -
Technical note: Pictures taken with with Ann's Cannon 75 or my Cannon G7 Digital camera.
Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.
This site best viewed with . . . a new puppy and a fine day.
Previous walk - Sat 11th July 2009 Cold Fell and Matty Benn's Bridge
A previous time up here - 28th September 2008 Black Combe with Jo Hall
Next walk - Sunday 19th July 2009 Black Crag, Holme Fell