Oak Cottage - Loweswater

Retreat to the quiet of the Western Lakes

The Cottage, and  the view up the Buttermere Valley
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Date : Sunday 15th August 2004

Location : Fleetwith Pike and Haystacks in the western Lake District Fells.

Occasion : A linear walk with Hilton, Hannah, Lou, Ann and the dogs, starting at Honister car park, then up along Fleetwith, back to Dubbs, over to Haystacks, and ending at Gatesgarth Farm car park.

Walk details : 4.95 miles, 1575 ft of ascent and 2386 ft of descent. 11 am start.

Weather : Grey with occasional rain but clearing as the afternoon progressed, light breezes giving a cooler edge to the day.

Group Photo at Honister

The three dogs seem keen and ready for the off.

Hoods up against the rain as we join the quarry road en route to the top of Fleetwith Pike.

The ancient stones are not in fact that ancient, and are probably a product of someone's less busy lunchtime.

Boys Toys big time . . . a splash of colour on the fell side.

The digger(yellow), crusher(blue) and sorter (grey) turn the old quarry waste into more profitable stone chippings.

Surprisingly hidden away on the top of the ridge are several unnamed pools which add character to what is often thought of as a bare ridge of quarried rock.

The heather is starting to flower which give the fells, and this gully, a delightful purple colour. Far below is the Honister road.

View from the top . . .

A misty view of the approaching rain shower as it travels up the Buttermere Valley towards us.

As the cloud rolls away, the sun makes an appearance further down the valley.

 

Dubbs Quarry Hut, now a bothy suitable for a rather basic overnight stay.

Inside it is dry and clean - a refuge from the weather if needed.

Round the back of Green Crag and over towards Black Beck.

Kirk Fell on the left has its top in the cloud. The perched boulder immediately to its right is on the furthest most part of the Haystacks Ridge before it goes over into Ennerdale and down to Black Sail Hut.

Slightly clearer weather now

with sunshine on Melbreak and Rannerdale further down the valley.

Late lunch spot at Black Beck Tarn.

Not exactly crowded.

All the rain recently has ensured that the water levels are back to normal.

Here Ann is working her way around the edge of Innominate Tarn.

Holly and Harry, so as not to spoil the habit of a lifetime, enjoy yet another swim in the tarn.

At least this time they came out clean !

Climbing up towards the top of Haystacks.

Below is now the water of Innominate Tarn, the heather dark under a passing cloud, but Brandreth enjoying a patch of sunlight. Green Gable and Great Gable in the distance are still shrouded in mist.

The top of Lou's fourth Wainwright summit and her second of today.

Time for a small snack - but she won't get very good reception holding that apple to her ear!

Down hill all the way now, leaving the crags of Haystacks and Seat behind us.

 

Below us the farm at Gatesgarth and the end of the walk.

The Rowan here is bursting with late summer colour.

" Did you see those three sheep just pass ?

Two yellow ones and a spotted one - they'll not be from these parts."

Crossing Peggy's Bridge, looking back along Warnscale Bottom to Green Crag at the head of the valley.

Journey's end at Trish's refreshment trailer at Gatesgarth. Hot tea and home made cakes make a nice change from beer and crisps and were very welcome after this slightly cooler day on the fells.

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