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" Scale Hill and the Hows "
Date & start time: 29th March 2020. 3.20 pm start.
Location of Start : By the red phone box, Loweswater, Cumbria, Uk. ( NY 143 211 )
Places visited : Scale Hill , Brackenthwaite Hows back via the bridleway and road.
Walk details : 2 mls, 375 ft of ascent, 1 hour 20 mins.
Highest point : Brackenthwaite Hows, 675 ft - 208 m.
Walked with : Ann and our dogs, Dylan and Dougal.
Weather : High cloud on a sunny day. A cool breeze.
© Crown copyright. All rights reserved. Licence number PU 100034184.
Brackenthwaite Hows is always in view from the house, over the top of our greenhouse and rough hedge.
When the sun shines the yellow moorland grass on the top invites us to walk and enjoy the views from there, perfect for today.
After a quick walk down to the paddock to see the frogs spawn and flowers we head out along the road.
Dressed for a walk but taking a moment to walk down the garden.
The spring bulbs are out but not the wild flowers, however there are new season plants in bloom.
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Our walk takes us out of Loweswater and into the area knows as Brackenthwaite
. . . just a couple of hundreds of yards down the road we cross the boundary.
On the right of the road are the young flock that arrived a week ago into the field.
They are all lined up eating a row of supplementary feed left by the farmer.
The weather has been kind to the young lambs but the cool temperatures hasn't encouraged the much needed grass to grow.
" Young Swaledale "
Only about ten days old.
More bothered that mum provides welcome nourishment than the grass not growing well at present.
To the right hand side of the road, one of Godferhead's horses comes over to see who's walking past.
The owners have cleared the fallen oak and piled the cut timber in the corner of the field.
You can see by the hollow nature of some of the old timber as to why it fell.
Across the river and up the hill to Scale Hill Cottages
The famous old hotel was converted to self-catering many years ago and will be back open for business just as soon as things allow.
I was reading a local booklet by a Mr H.E.Winter recently, who wrote in his article (in 1994)
that the original name of the Coaching Inn that pre-dated the hotel, was "The Grapes".
We take the path from the old hotel that heads through the woods towards Lanthwaite Green.
A hundred yards along we branch off on a small path to the left that climbs up through the trees.
Recent tree clearance has left a rather jumbled forest floor
but that doesn't stop the dogs rushing around like mad things let out of human-imposed isolation.
Don't see a problem for them though as they get the same walks as they always do, even during these abnormal times !
As it levels out we experience larch woods on the far side of the wall . . .
. . and traditional mixed woodland on our side.
Sadly a branch of Scots Pine has cracked and fallen onto another smaller tree, demolishing it as it fell.
Signs of human life on the Hows.
We continue on our path towards the top.
The gorse is just starting to bloom, lots of colour, little of that familiar coconut smell as yet.
The wider view down Lorton Valley . . . the colours are predominantly winter browns, not yet the spring greens.
Grasmoor and Lanthwaite Green Farm from the top of Brackenthwaite Hows
A certain artist named Turner made this view famous, but he viewed the Buttermere Valley from a mile or so further up the valley.
This actual view from the top of Scale Hill was praised by Thomas West in his "Guide to the Lakes" 1778.
Your chance to take in the atmosphere from this Victorian Viewing Station.
Looking at the bigger detail.
Just the odd patches of snow remain on the summit of High Stile and Red Pike.
More on Great Gable and distant Broad Crag and on the Scafell Ridge
seen over the top of Rannerdale Knotts and Haystacks.
Closer to home, in fact very close to home . . . looking down on the hamlet of Loweswater.
Godferhead's wildlife pond.
Muncaster House in the sunshine and the bright light reflecting off the roof of a parked car.
Work still goes on as the farmer spreads fertiliser on the fields ready for the expected summer growth.
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Time to head down . . .
Some of the trees planted a few years back are out-growing their plastic tubes.
Back in the woods the mud caused by the timber extraction has dried in the sunshine and the path is walkable again.
Down to a small cave known locally as "Barty's Cave".
It was noted in the local 'Historic Landscape Report' as a trial excavation of the crag, by miners in search of lead.
Barty however was a local 'character', an itinerant farm worker, probably a poacher and bit of a del-boy too.
Apparently he used to rest here when working locally and hide here when on the run from the law.
All I can say is that the cave isn't deep and the 'Peelers' must have had blinkers on to have missed him if they walked passed !
Still, it's a good story
We've made our way down to the main forest trackway that features in the October page of the Loweswatercam Calendar 2020.
My apologies to everyone but there's no refund on March and April months due to all the events and appointments having to be cancelled !
On the final stretch now, the road section is repeated as we pass Grasmoor House on the way home.
Ann stops to either look at the view or to see if she can spot the sheep's lost lamb.
The lamb made its way across to its mum of its own accord . . . so here's a picture of the view instead.
With the clocks having gone forward, the evenings are much lighter.
Someone suggested when changing the clock we should have wound them forward by a year not an hour.
All this self-isolation would hopefully be a thing of the past by then !
Hope you're coping with life . . .
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Technical note: Pictures taken with either Ann's Panasonic Lumix TZ60, or my Panasonic Lumix Gx8 Camera.
Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.
This site best viewed with . . . chance to think back as well as forward.
Previous walk - 28th March 2020 - Foulsyke and the Quarry Field
A previous time up here - 28th June 2019 - Brackenthwaite with the N.Trust
Next walk - 31st March 2020 - Foulsyke and the Lonesome Pine