Up The Pipeline
TW08 : Windermere to Ambleside

Thursday 7th April 2015

It's hard to believe that it is six months since we did our last section and fifteen months since we started.  But it is.  Weather and family commitments have conspired to keep us away from the Pipeline.  However today we, i.e. Cynthia & Ian, Margaret & I, were back in action.

Parking in Windermere can be tricky but Ian knew a secret place near to the railway station.  No further information will be given as we want to use it again!

First stop:  Orrest Head.  

Everyone made it to the summit within the time predicted on the signage board.  It was rather busy up there but that's not surprising seeing as it is a rather fine viewpoint from which to see over most of Windermere (the lake) and to the mountains beyond.

Descending to the north, we left all the crowds behind and headed to the Causeway Farm. We had one moment of indecision but followed the waymarker rather than my instinct. This led us to and along a farm track that, at its far end, was gated and locked with an official sign saying that route was closed.  So why hadn't they removed the signage that sent us that way?

In the Thirlmere Way book, Tim Cappelli praised Near Orrest farm for its appearance and, in contrast, berated Far Orrest Farm.  These days it seems the other way round.  There were a lot of rather filthy cows in a very small and rather mucky enclosure.

The first indication of the pipeline was as we dropped down to the A592 where there were gates and an inspection structure.  The pipes cross the Trout Beck out of sight from public access land to the south of the footbridge and there was no more indication of them for quite some time.

We had thought about using our National Trust cards to have a look round Town End but, Sod's Law, it was closed today.  Instead, we deviated from the Way in Troutbeck to have tea and cakes in the sunshine outside the old Post Office and very good they were.

The Way next goes along Robin Lane, passing what is shown on the map as "Pillar".

I have been there several times before but never realised its significance.  Mr Cappelli put that right.

He says that this is one of 21 viewing stations scattered around the Lake District that were essential visiting for any Victorian tourist.  

He refers to but does not mention the author of "a well known guide book of the time".  

This would seem to refer to the 1778 publication:

A Guide to the Lakes: Dedicated to the Lovers of Landscape Studies, and to All Who Have Visited, or Intend to Visit the Lakes in Cumberland, Westmorland, and Lancashire. by the Author of the Antiquities of Furness,  Thomas West.

This has given me an idea for our next great adventure.  However, in the meantime we press on with the Thirlmere Way.

We found one further set of Pipeline gates, guarding a field of anthills, as we headed along to Jenkin Crag but that was all.

Not that it mattered.  This was a really superb walk with glorious scenery down and across Windermere (Lake) to the Coniston fells, the Langdale fells and beyond.

The only negative was that my sat-nav Garmin GPSMAP 62S once again misbehaved.

Not to worry- that was soon forgotten when getting stuck into excellent Whitby scampi and chips, washed down with Kirkby Lonsdale ale at the Eagle and Child in Staveley.

It was good to be on the Way again.  

Don, Tuesday, 7th April 2015

Bonus picture for Margaret!

TW08 : Windermere to Ambleside







7.0 miles

50.1 miles

1,298 feet

6,411 feet




To see the index and other stages, click on:


The Thirlmere Way




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