Date - 7th October 2020 Distance - 4 miles
Ascent -
Map - OL4
Start point - Maggie's Bridge car park (NY 1345 2104)


Summits Achieved

No summits were reached on this walk



Dad had gone for breakfast, when there was a knock at the door.

"That will be room service with breakfast for us", said Fletcher. "I ordered earlier, to ensure you are ready to set off for your walk round Loweswater this morning."

"Thank you pal", replied Tetley. "Very thoughtful."

"We definitely do not want to delay, as we have to be back by lunchtime, as Dad is meeting Simon the General Manager for lunch in the Brasserie", went on Southey.

Very soon after Dad returned to the room, he said, "I'm ready lads."

"Ok", responded Allen, as we dashed out heading for the car, calling out "see you later pals."

"As we pulled out onto the road, Southey asked, "how do we get to the start?"

"It's the same route for when we walked round Crummock Water, but at the junction, instead of branching left we keep straight on", replied Shaun.

Tetley followed up, "this leads to Loweswater village. At the fork we go right past a road coming in on the left, then take the next left. This is a narrow single track lane leading to Maggie's Bridge, where there is rough parking just before the cattle grid."

Nearing our destination the mountains and fells came into view. "Ahh", breathed Grizzly. "So many old friends and reminders of days when we climbed to the summits."

The car park is not very large, but Dad was able to use one of the few remaining places.

He quickly got ready, while we settled in the rucksack.

Before we finally set off, Dad said, "this walk is new to you, Lads, but for me it is very nostalgic. Uncle Brian was not a keen walker like me, but he did do a few over the years. This was one of them, he and I doing the circuit in November 1995. I think we actually started from the car park further along the road that runs above the lake. I recall it was a happy day for us both, and I like to think that today, Uncle Brian will be very much with us."

Allen replied, "how wonderful of us to be following in his footsteps. I know how much you miss him Dad, as do we all. I am sure we will feel his presence all around us today."


The Walk

So as Dad shouldered the rucksack, Southey asked, "which way Shaun?"

"Across the cattle grid, and follow the access track towards Watergate Farm."

Immediately emerging from the trees, the fells surrounding the lake were revealed.

"That's Carling Knott", pointed Allen.

"We climbed that on 5th July 2009", said Tetley. "There are actually two summits. The one we can see here is Loweswater End at 1705 ft (519m). The highest point, reached by walking on in the direction we are looking, is at 1785 ft (544m)."

"However do you remember all this?", said Little Eric.

"Don't really know pal. Facts like this just seem to stick in my memory to be recalled at will."

Looking a bit left Grizzly said, "and that is Gavel Fell. Well in fact what we can actually see is High Nook on Gavel Fell. The actual summit of Gavel Fell is hidden behind."

Once again Tetley provided the statistics. This was climbed on 31st May 2009. High Nook stands at 1601 ft (488m) and Gavel Fell summit is 1726 ft (526m)."

To get this shot Dad had taken a left fork to a gate. As he lowered the camera, Shaun said, "this leads to High Nook Farm. Our route is the track going right."

Dad strode out, only to be stopped again, as Allen called out, "there's Burnbank Fell."

"Yes pal", agreed Tetley. The first time we climbed that was in July 2005, and we made the ascent from this side although our records were not so detailed then to indicate the exact route. The second time was on the same day we climbed Carling Knott. Then we approached from the far side starting in Lamplugh and ascending via Oswen Fell. Burnbanks summit is at 1558 ft (475m)."

Little Eric said, "that was when I climbed it, as I had not been born in 2005."

Immediately Dad swung the camera right to get this shot.

"Loweswater Fell", called out Tetley. "First climbed on 4th September 2005."

"Oh yes", replied Grizzly. "And that was a very important day, It was when we met Uncle Bob for the first time. We saw him with his grandson Jack at Fellbarrow. Fellbarrow is the highest point on this group of fells, of which Loweswater Fell is the southern most."

"That's right", said Allen, taking up the story. "Dad and he got talking and they did the rest of the walk together. And from that chance meeting followed all the wonderful walks with Uncle Bob in the Lakes and then our exploration of the Yorkshire Dales."

"Ahh", said Grizzly. "Happy days. It is just a shame that Uncle Bob's health no longer allows him to go walking. We all miss his company."

"I am loving hearing about your adventures climbing all these fells", said Southey. "This was long before I was adopted, so it is great to extend my knowledge." Then pointing he asked, "what is that huge fell there."

"You've seen that before pal, but from the side", said Allen. "It is Mellbreak that dominates the west side of Crummock Water. This is the northern end. If you look carefully you can see the path crossing the lower slopes then it continues via the narrow light stripe. This is very eroded, and we well remember descending this route, on the same day we climbed Burnbank Fell in July 2005."

"I will never really forget that day. It was so hot, over 80 degrees", said Dad. "We had done Burnbank Fell, Blake Fell, and Gavel Fell, and then crossed on to Hen Comb. From there we dropped down the steep side into Mosedale, crossing the valley and making the ascent of Mellbreak. In the hottest part of the day, I struggled on the ascent, having to make lots of stops."

"Nevertheless you made it Dad", said Grizzly. "You never let us down."

"Thanks lad. The route we came down is very steep, as can be seen, and the path is very eroded, so I had to take it very carefully. The pint of water then a pint of beer in the Kirkstile Inn, was a very welcome reward!"

Onwards the track soon brought us close to Loweswater, with a nice view along its length. Grizzly told us, "Loweswater is one of the smaller lakes, with a maximum length of 1.1 miles. The average depth is 28 ft, with a maximum depth of 52 ft. It is owned by the National Trust."

Just before reaching Watergate Farm, nestling amongst trees...

...we struck right across the grass to a gate and onto the track through to Holme Wood.

Studying the map Shaun said, "the path left climbs to the bridleway above the wood. From that, ascending by Holme Beck the summit of Burnbank Fell can be reached."

A few minutes later we passed a seat. "Let's have our picture taken here?", suggested Little Eric. Then seeing it was wet, he asked, "please can we sit on the map case, Dad?"

"What beautiful trees", said Southey, as we walked along. "So many different shades of green, and just a hint of the autumn colours to come."

A bridge was crossed, and then soon a second one that allowed us to avoid the ford on Holme Beck.

Grizzly said, "the beck starts high on the slopes of Carling Knott on its journey into Loweswater."

Holme Wood ended at a gate and tall stone step stile.

"Taking the easy option?", queried Grizzly, as we approached.

"No lad", replied Dad. "Over the stile. Some extra exercise for my leg muscles."

The stony track continued but in more open terrain, and climbed steadily.

Looking right, Tetley pointed, "that's Darling Fell whose summit stands at 1283 ft (391m), and is another of the summits in the Fellbarrow group. We have only climbed it once, on 10th July 2011, being a Birkett summit we needed to bag."

"So that I could tick them off, we went on to repeat all the other summits", Little Eric stated. "Thank you Dad and pals for that."

After a way the track became walled and these two horses were standing quietly in the adjacent field.

Much of Loweswater is lined with trees making it difficult to get a picture. Now though we were high above it, and this is the view we had. Allen remarks, "it will be better in the winter once the leaves are off the tree."

"Grasmoor with its summit lost in cloud and Whiteless Pike form the backdrop above the tree", observed Little Eric.

Soon now we reached the lovely house, Hudson Place...

...the coat of arms above the door indicating when it was built.

"I wonder what the initials mean and what animal is represented?", mused Southey.

We all waited in anticipation for Grizzly to enlighten us, but all he said was, "I have searched for information, but came up blank. All I can say is the the house carries Grade II listed status."

"Oh well just one of lifes' mysteries then", sighed Allen.

We met a lady with her dog, and Dad chatted about walking and the local area. Loweswater must be a special place as she told us that her husband's ashes are scattered on Burnbank Fell.

Now we walked downhill along the access road. Southey said, "at the bottom just before a bend we go right through a gate."

The track led towards a bridge. "Wow", called out Little Eric. "What a super view. The fell on the left is Whiteless Pike and distantly behind Robinson with below in the centre Rannerdale Knotts. Through the gap between that and Mellbreak the pointed summit is Black Star on Honister Crag."

So far Allen's luck of not having any sheep pictures in the story was looking good. However as we crossed the bridge, he called out, "darn", seeing that the field was full of sheep. "I'm not going to get away with it", he cried seeing Dad hauling the camera out.

"Never mind pal", said Tetley, placing a consoling paw on Allen's shoulder.

At the end of the field a gate led onto the road by a layby that was full of cars. "This is probably where we parked when I did the walk with Uncle Brian", remarked Dad.

Turning right he strode out along the road.

Here, for about half a mile there is no option other than to walk along the road, as the fields by the lake are private land. At the next car parking area, a path led through the trees, but soon brought us on to the road again.

Coming to a wall corner, Allen said, "there looks to be a path descending to the lake."

A short steep descent indeed brought us by the shore, and going left we followed the narrow path through the woods.

A brief a view opened across Loweswater. Shaun called out, "that's Little Dodd and Hen Comb."

"1188 ft and 1670 ft respectively", said Tetley. "We last climbed them on 21st August 2011. It was on a Birkett mopping up walk, as whilst we had climbed Hen Comb, we had not bagged Little Dodd."

"I left my cap at Hen Comb", commented Dad. "Another senior moment."

"Initially we walked up Mosedale", said Grizzly, "crossing the Mosedale Beck to gain Little Dodd and on up to Hen Comb. To complete the circle, we had to cross Whiteoak Beck to gain the path via High Nook Farm to Maggie's Bridge, where we parked that day too."

Allen took up the story. "Whiteoak Beck was in spate and Dad had to edge across sitting on a pole from which was suspended a frame to catch debris. It was a bit scary with us hanging over the beck above the rushing water."

Shortly the path ended and we rejoined the road.

What's that?", called out Southey looking across the road.

"A pinfold", replied Tetley, seeing the notice board that told us all about it.

Soon now we passed this lovely house called Crabtree Beck. On the wall is carved the initials FB AB and the date 1660.

Grizzly said, "the building was probably once two properties both dating from the 17th century. I found an article from the Times and Star newspaper, which gave and interesting insight of the house. It was the birthplace of John Burnyeat sometimes called 'The St Paul of Quakerism' who was born there in 1631, the son of a Quaker farmer and a friend of George Fox the founding father of the Society of Friends. George Fox spent many days here and the seat on the porch, which he often used, is still called George Fox's seat."

"Thank you pal", replied Little Eric. "I wonder if the 'B' in the initials refers to 'Burnyeat' They could refer to perhaps John's son and wife."

Continuing we soon reached the narrow road right that led to Maggie's Bridge. Along here we again met the lady with her dog, who Dad had talked to at Hudson Place. She was going for lunch at the Kirkstile Inn.

"What a lovely walk, Dad", said Southey.

"Yes", agreed Allen. "It has been nice to see the fells surrounding the lake, and think about the happy days climbing them."

"And to walk in Uncle Brian's footsteps. I really did feel he was with us today", went on Tetley.

"Thank you as always Dad. We truly are a very fortunate group to go on all the walks and see such wonderful places", added Shaun."

"Aye", said Tetley. "Another grand day out."


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