: Ambleside to Grasmere
The strange feature of todayís Pipeline stage was that
there was no sign of the Thirlmere pipeline.
The author had opted to take us up the Coffin Route from Ambleside to
Grasmere. I think had I been planning
the route I would have chosen the other side of Rydal Water, visited the
Cave and enjoyed the iconic view over Grasmere but itís a close call and the Coffin Route is the nearer to the deeply
The first stretch, along the road from the outskirts of
Ambleside to the entrance to Rydal Park, is a little dull but once this is over
things start to pick up. Or used to do
but at the moment there is considerable activity with earth moving equipment
which has scarred the landscape whilst, wait for it, a PIPELINE is being
This one seems to be either
an overflow pipe from a small hydro electricity turbine up the Scandale Beck or,
perhaps more likely,
the source of running water taken from the beck for a turbine located in a new building
being constructed in the park. Letís
hope that once the work is finished, the landscape reverts quickly to its
From then on, things were as they should be, including
the weather- dry with light cloud so as to be not too hot for walking.
The delights of the exterior of Rydal Hall were enjoyed;
in particular the Grot, an ancient small building from which to watch the
waterfall, and the formal gardens.
eschewed the café, good though we knew it to be. Similarly we eschewed the café at Rydal Mount
(and resisted the temptation to drop down to the Badger Bar) .....
..... but continued
along the coffin route, stopping like the funeral parties of yore for a drink from our
flasks at the coffin resting stone.
This undulating path has fine views over Rydal Water,
which somehow I failed to photograph,
though only glimpses of Grasmere were to be seen yet its picture was taken.
As also was the pond that used to
be full of irises and now seems to have been invaded.
The pipeline here is several hundred feet
below the ground so glimpses of that were not expected.
The Wordsworth Museum at Dove Cottage (Ian tells me it
was designed by the same person that designed the striking Edinburgh Museum) is
a distinctive building but somewhat out of character for the area. It
was a magnet for Japanese taking selfies. We resisted the café here, too. Similarly we resisted all the many temptations
of Grasmere village, pressing on instead up the Easedale Road to Goody Bridge
then north until reaching Low Mill Bridge where we crossed the stepping stones that lead
towards the Travellers Rest.
Here we had a dilemma.
Checking the timetable at the bus stop, it seemed that we had arrived
just two minutes after the bus had been due.
But we hadnít seen it. Should we
wait in the anticipation that it was a few minutes late or repair to the pub
for reward? After ten minutes waiting,
just in case, we did something different- we walked down the hill to The Famous
Swan and had lunch there. It had to be
swift as now we only had forty minutes before the next bus. The staff complied with fast and tasty
butties. Beer pulling not such a
We reached the bus stop in time but
then disaster struck. Margaret has lost her bus pass so had to pay
£4.20 to travel the four miles to Ambleside where the ladies were unable to
resist the temptations of a coffee shop.
This was a gentle stage. The next, the steep ascent to Grisedale Tarn
and the even steeper descent to Dunmail Raise, will be more of a
Will the ladies join us or
will they bide their time in a Grasmere coffee or, worse, clothes shop whilst
we men act as their proxies? Watch this space!
Wednesday 24th June 2015
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