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" The Snow covered Coffin Route "

Date & start time:      14th March 2023.   2 pm start.

Location of Start :     The Grange Hotel, Loweswater, Cumbria, Uk. ( NY 116 226 ).

Places visited :          Hudson Place, Iredale Place,The Chair, High Nook, Maggie's Bridge.

Walk details :              4.75 miles, 985 ft of ascent, 1050 ft of descent, 2 hours 20 mins.

Highest point :           Above Holme Wood, 1055 ft above sea level.

Walked with :              Myself and the dogs, Dylan and Dougal.

Weather :                     Overcast, threatening wintery showers. cool.

                                A linear walk, courtesy of Loes.


© Crown copyright. All rights reserved. Licence number PU 100034184.


The rain that arrived during the last walk turned to snow overnight, to point out to us that winter wasn't over yet.

Today Loes wanted to call over to the Grange Hotel to see Lorna and Keith, so I was able to cadge a lift across to enable this linear walk back to home.

She preferred a natter at the Grange to possibly getting cold or wet on the walk, so returned home post-conversation, in the car.

It had snowed overnight again but by lunchtime the valley snow was melting.  Higher up the fellside the snow would be holding for sure.

At the start of the walk the Grange Hotel was looking resplendent in the sunshine.

[ Parking for this walk can be found by the silver and glass phone box closer to the lake.]

Waterend Farm seen through the trees as I walked the lane up to "The Place" and "Hudson Place" Farm.

Behind the farm the ground rises to the summit of snow covered Darling Fell.

Crossing the valley, looking south east down Loweswater to Whiteless Pike on the left and Mellbreak on the right.

Up near the farm the oak stood out beautifully against the blue sky.

Almost an about turn as we took the gate next to house known as The Place, and headed north west up the slope.

Jenkinson Place farm as I cross the fields.

Looking back at Iredale Place, still with that bright sunlight.

Hopefully I should get a nice winter photo of the Chair up on the Coffin Road.

Looking across the valley at Graythwaite Farm and the trees of Graythwaite Woods.

The line of trees crossing below Fellbarrow and Smithy Fell is the rough fell track to Mosser.

Climbing above the valley I pass the service reservoir that provides the valley and myself with drinking water.

Now the West Cumbrian Pipeline is up and running, this is being filled with water from Thirlmere instead of Ennerdale.

Where the bridleway meets the track from Fangs Brow.

The track crosses some slightly undulating pasture and each of the dips is filled with melt water.

If you stand on one leg and close the opposite eye, it looks like Father Christmas has been run over . . . oh no !

The tractor tyre marks are where the farmer has brought up winter fodder for the Belted Galloway cows.

The cattle are traditionally black with a white stripe, the brown is a regressive gene in their DNA and therefore less common.

I was just about to let the dogs through the gate when noticed a big black cloud heading my way.

That sunny photo by the chair is looking less of a possibility.

Driven snow overnight has coated one side of the gate and stile, at the top of the slope above the lake but below Burnbank.

The (white) track continuing on is an old quarry track.  I follow the water down the track to the left after the gate.

Looking back at the walk so far as the visibility starts to deteriorate . . . that cloud is catching me up !

The Grange Hotel is about mid photo, about quarter of a mile beyond the end of Loweswater.

Well, there's the chair and the lake . . . but not a lot else.

Better have a photo with the dogs.

But what's that I see . . . the faintest of rainbows . . . the sun must be coming out once more.

I'll hang on for a few minutes . . . as professional photographers are supposed to do apparently.

I'm still in shade but the valley beyond has regained some colour.

Quizzical looks as to why they have to sit still while I run up the bank opposite.

Hope you like the photo . . . who knows it might make the calendar later this year ?

Onward and upward now as the patch of sunlight races across the valley leaving these larch trees in the shade.

The track climbs behind the wall that bounds the upper side of Holme Wood.

Round the corner and a fine view of Carling Knott as I approach the Holme Beck stream crossing.

At one time the beck used to supply drinking water to Mockerkin . . . perhaps that explains the reason for the substantial track.

Looking back at the Ash tree, down to the lake and across to Darling Fell.

The track looks unsafe with no edge, but was never a problem, the snow was soft and the grip okay.

Looking back again, this time from the gate that leads into Holme Wood.

You could shortcut the walk here by going down the diagonal path to Watergate, but be aware that it's been cut up a bit with the recent forestry work.

Presumably the larch up here have their days numbered, if the Trust follow through on the demand to clear fell this variety.

Another gate, this time at the high point behind the wood.

This area is always wet as a stream issues from the side of the track.

Today was no exception and the emerging ground water melts the snow around the gate.

Larch clearance is opening up the views through what remain of the trees.

The last section seems to have received more snow, as I turn the corner once more and get our first view of High Nook Tarn.

One of those weird panoramas . . . but it gives an idea of the expansive view across to Grasmoor and Whiteside from this part of the track.

High Nook Beck Bridge is just a footbridge . . . farm vehicles wanting access will need to ford the stream.

The snow cover is easing now as I drop down, through the fell gate, towards High Nook Farm.

An inquisitive Swaledale sheep watches our passing intently.    All the others had run away !

- - - o o o - - -


The snow cloud had moved on

and was now sitting on the top of  Whiteside.


Down here at High Nook Farm

the footpath crosses directly through the farmyard.


A little known fact is that a certain Alfred Wainwright

stayed at this farm when writing his famous Lakeland Guides.


The farmers, Jeanie and Billy Hope,

were the only people who were known to do "Bed and Breakfast"

in Loweswater at that time.


- - - o o o - - -

Another retrospective, as I look back at Carling Knott and the 'beak' of the pheasant.

I hope the National Trust have plans to re-plant the woodland and maintain its artistic heritage.

The old bird is looking a bit moth eaten . . .

but in fact Remora disease is an airborne fungus, not one spread by insects.

It's a short five or six minute walk back to the house now . . . but it's starting to get wet again

I pull my hood up against the rain.

- - - o o o - - -

Half an hour later and that rain had turned to snow . . . I got home just at the right time.

Add another twenty minutes and we're back into winter . . . but home and dry with a large cup of tea in hand.

What a great walk !


Although we are very familiar with snow here in Saskatchewan

(and are, quite frankly, getting a little weary with shovelling this year when spring is proving to be tardy)

your close-to-home photographs set the scene wonderfully.

The first Red Phone Box photograph is a small masterpiece, thank you, David Miller.

I replied "Wishing you some nice spring warmth. It sounds like you're looking forward to it." . . . to which he replied :

The forecast looks hopeful for the end of the week. However, as Dave Phillips, Senior Climatologist for Environment Canada, said yesterday, “What we have to remember is that 'the first day of spring’ and ’the first spring day’ are not necessarily the same thing.

This brief video nicely sums up life and weather forecasts here in the Canadian winter:

Thanks for the snowdrops,



- - - o o o - - -

Technical note: Pictures taken with my Panasonic Lumix Gx8 Camera.

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

This site best viewed with . . . A favourable seven day forecast to brush away any winter blues.

Go to Home Page . . . © RmH . . . Email me here

Previous walk - 12th March 2023 - River Derwent - by the Sea

A previous time up here - 17th July 2014 - Loweswater and High Nook

Next walk - 25th March 2023 - An Afternoon Buttermere