Friday, 18 March 2011

Day two, The Dales Way to Staveley

I've just worked the mileage out on 9 miles for yesterday, 11.68 for today, 14.42 for day three, and 8.46 for day four, giving a total of 43.54 for the trip. Not bad, I would have thought about ten miles a day for this terrain isn't too bad. It would have been more if I hadn't had to travel so far, 300 miles total, which cut down the time available on day one and four.

Anyway, the weather didn't look too promising when I got up on Tuesday morning, very heavy mist with intermittent rain. Visibility on the peaks was not going to be very good so I decided to do a low level walk. I delayed my start a little bit thinking it might brighten up, but no luck, I set off from the hostel at 10am.

Windermere Youth Hostel is just off a steep minor road off the A591 at Troutbeck Bridge. I headed northbound towards Troutbeck village then took a path to the right onto Windermere Way next to a stone cottage. I came down the embankment and crossed Trout Beck over two foot bridges.

I love the contrasting colours here, the bright greens mixed with the grey rocks, and a little bit of autumn browns. The fast flowing water was crystal clear, a lovely spot to spend a few minutes.

One of the footbridges, the beck forks here and there was a second identical bridge to the right of this one.

Just a bit further on I came to The Common Farm. It was a narrow tarmac road, and opposite March House I found a collection of lost wheel trims, presumably from boy racers who had taken the bends too fast. They made me smile, thinking about my re arrangement of wheel trims I found in the woods a few weeks back.

I skirted around the edge of Windermere, not wanting to do the touristy bit near the lake. Just after I crossed the railway line the path came out behind Gill Droomer Stile, that's the name of this house. It seemed perfect in every way. Beck Mill running through the grounds. Perfectly tended gardens laid with lawns and flower beds, and full of bushes waiting to burst into colour. There was a greenhouse and vegetable patch, I wanted to move in, ha ha.

A bit further on I joined the Dales Way. For those who have read my previous walking reports, I have done parts of this path in Yorkshire. It's a very pleasant walk, rolling hills over grassy moorland, and lots of sheep. Also a few farms to pass through, and photo opportunities to snap some animals

I reached the village of Stavely and decided to explore the possibility of a bus ride back. The weather hadn't improved, I even had to resort to using the brolly a few times. I looked at the train time tables outside the station, there was a train, but I could get back for nothing with my pass if there was a bus. I asked a young couple who was walking their dog about a bus service, showing them my map with the route marked out where I had just walked. They were amazed that I had walked from Windermere.
After they had pointed me in the direction of the bus stop, they asked if I knew a route off road where they could take their dog for a walk. I pointed out the Dales Way on the map and suggested they go up the road and take the path to the left just before the main road which would take them over the railway line, then turn left alongside the river. I'm sure they thought I knew the area, I didn't tell them I had never been there before in my life. Made me chuckle, a local asking me the way.
Found the bus stop and only had to wait five minutes for the bus. I got out at the bus station, but it was a bit too early to go back to the hostel, so I had a look around the town. The weather hadn't improved, I wanted to find some shelter to sit down and eat, but there wasn't any. So I had to resort to sitting on a park bench next to the library huddled undernath my brolly. I don't think they would have appreciated me asking if I could eat my sandwiches inside the library, ha ha.
It was about 5 oclock so I started to make my way back. There is a viewpoint on the map called Orrest Head, and I came across this sign next to a hotel. Oh well, might as well take a look at it while I am here. Notice it says 'unrivalled views'.
A lot of huffing and puffing up a very steep climb along twisty paths through the woods, brings you to this iron kissing gate. Almost there, should be a good view this high up.

At last, I'm at the top. What did I see, bugger all, ha ha. Yes, the weather is still crap.

11.68 miles today. I'm ready for a good hot meal. Tonight it's baked beans, marrowfat peas, and tuna fish, all half tins left over from yesterday, ha ha.


  1. Love your travels and pics. Added a short blip, advertising your blog today. Thought you might like to know.
    Warm regards

  2. As usual Ilona, a great travelogue and good photos. I envy you your get up and go :O)

  3. On his first visit to the lakes, as a young man from Blackburn, Orrest Head was the view that changed the course of A Wainwrights life. He had just arrived in Windermere after a five hour bus journey. It was late in the day and like you he was tempted by the short walk. Unlike you it was on a clear day. Later he wrote, "It was a moment of magic, a revelation so unexpected that I stood transfixed, unable to believe my eyes". I hope you got to go again on a better day.

  4. Oh how we all devour your blog and those fab pics from your outings. Lucky you, to be retired and free to roam. I live in hope that I`m still reasonably fit to do some outings when I get to retire. Until then I shall follow yours and drewl over your blog, lol.

  5. Eileen, I was just going to more or less quote what you have done as I opened the comments box. Another Wainwright fan I see. I have most of his Videos/DVDs and a few books, not only the guide books.

    Ilona, lovely pictures, wonderful saturation. It looks very atmospheric the seat on the last photo.

    I like baked beans and marrowfat peas - but not together! I look forward to tomorrow's episode. I have been painting a Millennium milestone today on the transpennine trail.

  6. Fantastic pics. Have just discovered your blog and if this is anything to go by I am very much looking forward to reading what you get up to.

  7. The collection of wheel trims made me laugh!!

  8. Hi, Ilona, hace you read foster mummys blog? Frugal queen will no longer blog and I feel absolutely bereft!! I wonder what the problem is. Kind regards, a very worried mollymay!!!

  9. Hi mollymay. No I haven't read foster mummys blog, I don't know where to find it. It does seem strange that FQ has just gone, she might be busy with other things. Have a read of a few more blogs, or maybe start your own, and try not to worry.