ilanarama: my footies in my finnies (snorkeling)
[personal profile] ilanarama
On our "Connoisseur's Coast-to-Coast" walk, in addition to skipping the less interesting bits of the standard C2C route, we would also have the opportunity to walk in additional places that are not on the standard route. Our itinerary included two extra days in Glenridding for optional things; naturally, Britt and I chose to Walk More!

On the morning of the first layover day, the group boarded the Ullswater 'Steamer' (the quote mark is part of the name, I guess because the boats are not, technically, steamers, but are powered by diesel engines) for a lovely ride across the long and skinny (9 miles by 0.75 mile) lake. Most of the group disembarked at Howtown, for a ~7-mile walk back along a lake track; Britt, Kris, Aleta and I opted to ride all the way to the far end of the lake, which would give us a total hike of 12.3 miles (by my GPS). (You can see a schematic map here; we followed the rightmost purple line to Howtown, then followed the trails which run close to the lakeshore back to Patterdale, and then along the road to Glenridding.)

The Ullswater 'Steamer'

We walked through the small town of Pooley Bridge, following the somewhat confusing signs until we found the 'bridle path'. This designation (as opposed to 'footpath') means that mountain bikes are allowed, and we certainly saw quite a few along our way back to Glenridding. Of course the original meaning of the term is also valid, and we saw a couple of people on horseback as well, along with a small herd of Fell ponies, the Lake District's local horse breed. They were quite friendly, so we assume they were not wild but simply turned out to graze on the commons.

Britt gets friendly with the fell ponies

The pathway we walked on was broad and solid; it was originally a Roman road known as the High Street. At the Cockpit, a circle of fairly small stones - not particularly impressive other than by its mere existence as something put in place by people a long time ago - we turned off the Roman road and onto a more quotidian path which slowly brought us back toward the lake. We ate our lunches amidst grazing sheep, looking out over the blue water.

Hiking above Ullswater Lunchtime!

Gradually the broad fields on both sides gave way to forest and old stone buildings. At Howtown we crossed the road which had run along the first part of the lake; now we were directly along the lake shore on an often-rocky path which wound up and down the hillside which forms the bowl of the glacier-carved lake.

stone building green roof

green forest Ullswater view

By the time we reached Patterdale we had hiked nearly 12 miles and were ready for refreshment! A man on the boat had recommended the White Lion Inn as a good 'free house' (that is, not tied to a particular brewery, and more likely to have local real ale). Their 'White Lion Ale', brewed by Tirril Brewery, really hit the spot - light and yeasty and fruity and yummy. (I found it very cool that most pubs served their various cask ales in branded glasses for the appropriate brewery. I've never seen that in the US!)

Approaching Patterdale A local brew in the White Lion

Then it was time to head back to the hotel for a shower and dinner. It was still light when we'd finished eating, so Britt and I took a stroll around Glenridding, which we hadn't yet really had the chance to see. It's a cute town, though there's a distinct separation between the stone B&Bs and vacation rentals of the highly touristy town center and the simpler, more modern rowhouses where the actual residents live. Unsurprisingly it is a huge local tourism destination, and as we were there during a sunny summer weekend, there were lots and lots of tourists. But who can blame them?

Alpenglow over Ullswater

14 photos, no nattering

(no subject)

Date: 2013-07-03 05:38 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Your photos make me wish I was back there!

I'm very glad you suggested the trip. I had a good time in London, but enjoyed seeing the area we walked through considerably more!

(no subject)

Date: 2013-07-28 10:26 pm (UTC)
idlerat: A black and white hooded rat, head and front paws, black background, as if looking out window. Says "idler@." (Default)
From: [personal profile] idlerat
Ponies! Ponies cute! *pat pat*

Have you ever been to Belgium? Urban and not so much for the hiking, but you should go to Brugge, maybe in winter, just to eat and drink (and look at art and stuff). The beer is so much more tremendous than export can ever showcase, and in such a profusion of varieties - I thought of it because of your comment on the glasses. Bars there will have 15 or 20 types of different glasses for different beers, and you'll hear about ones brewed around the corner, or on the other side of town, as well as ones from different parts of Belgium. Brugge is just very lovely and a manageable size, though I haven't been there in 20 years. But I bet you could find similar drinking accommodations in other parts of Belgium also.

(no subject)

Date: 2013-09-02 09:19 pm (UTC)
oxoniensis: birds flying (world: learn from one bird how to fly)
From: [personal profile] oxoniensis
I must take a 'steamer' on Ullswater some time - I've swum there, and canoed (badly - I'm rubbish in a canoe), but never taken the steamer.

Did you get to Keswick at any stage? That's my favourite area in the Lakes, and Blencathra just to the north is my favourite peak. It's a little bit less touristy than it is further south.


ilanarama: me, The Other Half, Moab UT 2009 (Default)

August 2017

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20212223 242526

My running PRs:

5K: 21:03 (downhill) 21:43 (loop)
10K: 43:06 (downhill)
10M: 1:12:59
13.1M: 1:35:55
26.2M: 3:23:31

You can reach me by email at heyheyilana @


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