: After The Floods
26th November 2009
we are not slaves to the diary, Thursday has tended
to be our preferred day for BOOTboys
outings this year. Thank goodness we moved it
last week. After a night of torrential rain, Cumbria
hit the news big time with extensive flooding. The fells
were an official No Go area. Kendal itself just
about held out though the river was only inches below
street level and flowing frighteningly fast.
from Victoria Bridge, Sandes Avenue
view upstream from Nether Bridge
Bridge, Sandes Avenue
weir at Stramongate Bridge
higher upstream, Burneside and Staveley were awash.
Windermere, the houses in the marina were
flooded out and the boathouse at Bowness
is still under water several days later.
the lake had rapidly risen by twelve feet
and had been three foot higher than ever
from a cursory tour round, it would seem
that the impact there is more
on businesses and therefore, in the first
instance at least, economic rather than
Pier still under water
We got off lightly compared with,
say, Ulverston or Cockermouth where there is serious disruption
to many families or Workington where the town has been
partitioned through the loss of all its road and foot
problem was caused by a deep depression, that normally would
have continued to move northwest, got blocked over the
lake district for the best part of 24 hours and just
carried on dumping water non stop, a foot of water in
total over a huge area. Someone described it as
rain of "biblical proportions"!
week, it has continued to be wet from time to time but
not in the same league. On the other hand, yesterday,
winds gusting up to 120 m.p.h were forecast and 93 m.p.h.
was recorded on the top of Cross Fell.
winds and heavy showers were again forecast today so
we decided to put the former to our advantage. The
plan was to catch the bus to Witherslack and be blown
back over the Scars to Kendal.
given the scarcity of daylight hours, we had to set
off before the Great Leader's bus passes come into effect!
After leaving the car at Stan's we walked down
to the bus station in Kendal. It was grey and
damp in the air but not raining and much brighter in
the south-west where we were headed.
Community Shop and Derby Arms
alighted the bus at Witherslack and, after a
lot of faffing about with putting on wet
weather gear, headed up through the village,
past the Community Shop and the Derby Arms,
up into the woods and over to Witherslack
path has been done several times on BB walks
but never in this direction. The trees
sheltered us from the wind and occasional
down to the Hall, we saw the first real
signs of seriously excess water.
became very excited at seeing the post box
in the wall. What could be so exciting
about an ER postbox? Well this ER
was not Elizabeth Regina but Edward Rex,
the Edward in question being the VII.
50 points in the I-Spy book of Post Boxes.
I became excited at the view of Witherslack
Hall (home for seriously naughty boys) which
I had never noticed before.
it dawned on me that the reason that I had never noticed
it was that we were on
the wrong path. We had wandered up the main drive
to the hall. We corrected our route and came across
a lot of parked cars plus old men in Barbours and flat
hats hanging around. Clearly the hunt was in action.
by the football field, I persuaded Stan and Tony to
pose for a Spot the Ball competition. Mark your
entry with a cross and make sure it reaches me by 9th
is quite a steep climb up onto Whitbarrow Scar which
was not helped by the rock being very greasy in places.
Near the top we met our first hound.
of the features of Whitbarrow Scar is the number of
trees that lean at 45 degrees or more, all in the same
direction as if bowing to some unseen god.
tried to take a team picture at the Lords Seat cairn
but all of a sudden the wind turned really strong and
a viscous shower erupted. Rather than risk the
wrath of the others in making them stand through these
conditions, after one failure I decided to wait till later.
there were many rainbows to admire as each wave of rain
shower heading our way
tree with rainbow
hunt handlers with terriers
headed down through the woods and heard then came across
more hounds and then the handlers. Why did they
have five terriers with them, we wondered, if they were
not flusing out foxes that have gone to earth?
think Tony was having an off day today. His body
clock was seven minutes slow. We still made him
wait for lunch- we had a bit of trouble finding the
right path out of the woods but once this was sorted
out we came across an excellent dining table, erected
for us in the Township Plantation in 1815.
Plantation Dining Table
and team picture completed we dropped down into the
hamlet of The Howe and out into the Lyth Valley where
there was serious excess water a-plenty.
Lyth Valley, Scout Scar behind
had wondered if the bridges would be ok but we had no
problem in crossing them, nor the waterlogged fields,
thanks to the elevated causeway.
causeway across the fields
did have a problem with the roads, however, in that
the tarmac was very hard on the heels.
degree parnorama of road surrounded by waterlogged fields
reaching Brigsteer we once more entered woodland. Tony
excelled himself and queried whether we ought not have
taken a footpath off to the right that Stan and I had
dismissed? I think this is a first- a navigational
triumph for him.
Barrowfield Farm it is a short but steep climb onto
back across the Lyth Valley from Scout Scar to Whitbarrow
the big pile of stones that marks the diverging paths,
we debated whether to take the scenic route along the
Scar or the direct route across Helsington Barrows.
Stan seemed very anxious to complete the tour
of the Scars but what clinched it for Tony and me was
not only would it be longer, we would be exposed to
what was again a very strong and cold wind. The
direct route won the day and we crossed the Barrows
and the old Kendal Racecourse.
comes into sight
still had a trick up his sleeve however to add extra
distance. After more road (and heel) bashing we
had nearly reached his house when he suggested that
we really ought to see the old but newly restored Greenside
Kiln. As Lime Kilns go, this one is quite a monster
with double fireplaces.
Lime Kiln Entrance
of the fireplaces
he took us onto the golf course to see the
Battleships. I can't understand how
I had never seen them before. Two
large structures in limestone that had been
left from the days when the land had been
a quarry. Just why that had been the
case no one knew but generations of Kendal
children, Stan and Tony included, had enjoyed
playing on them.
this time, Stan had run out of ideas for
keeping us moving and all that remained
was the brief climb back to his house and
shower, another rainbow
we had been in a lot of short showers (and
seen more rainbows in one day than I can
remember) it had not been that wet that
we were soaked- unlike several recent outings.
although the ground was damp throughout,
the aftermath of the floods had not impeded
us at any stage.
the wind had only seldom troubled us.
fact, it had been a surprisingly pleasant
26th November 2009
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26th November 2009
Scar, Scout Scar
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using the freeware utility GPS Babel."
For the latest totals of the mileages, heights and Lakeland Fells
Books Wainwrights see: Wainwrights.
If anyone wants to claim other peaks, please let
me know and I will submit them to the adjudication committee!
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This page describes an adventure of BOOTboys, a loose group of friends of mature
years who enjoy defying the aging process by getting out into the hills as
often as possible!
As most live in South Lakeland, it is no surprise that
our focus is on the Lakeland fells and the Yorkshire Dales.
As for the name, BOOTboys, it does not primarily derive from an
item of footwear, and certainly not from any skin head associations or other
type of social group,
but is in memory of
the erstwhile landlady
the erstwhile Burnmoor Inn at Boot in Eskdale,
who enlivened Saint Patrick's Day
and other odd evenings many years ago!
If you want to contact us, click on
If you want to join
let us know and
of new BOOTboys reports.
: A Gordon Day Out
: Thank You,
Wednesday 14th January
: A Wicked Hike???
: Take a Mug With You
: Down in the Forest
: Not How But Where?
: Binsey Can Wait
(but Uncle Monty Can Not)
Thursday 12th February
: Badgers on the Line
: It's not a W!
: Up on the Roof
: Not the Blisco Dashers
Thursday 2nd April
: John's Comeback
Monday 6th April
: Two Churches, a Pulpit and a Cherry Picker
: Companions of the BOOT
: The Gale Force Choice
: The Comeback Continues
28th May - 2nd June
: Has Anyone Seen Lily?
Feet on the Greenburn Horseshoe
- BB0921 :
The Tebay Fell Race Walk
: For England and St George
: The Coniston Outliers
Friday 31st July
: Little To Be Said In Favour?
: The Third Night of the Rescue
: Long Wet Windy Monty Bothy Fun?
: Dear Mrs Scroggins
Friday 11th September
: An Ard Day's Hike
Thursday 17th September
A Canter of Convalescents?
International Autumnal Expedition
Sunday 27th September
- BB0931 : A Bit of an Adventure
Thursday 1st October
- BB0932 : Paths of Glory?
Thursday 8th October
: When Yorkshire Was Welsh
- BB0934 : Unlocking the Whinlatters
Thursday 22nd October
: A Tale of Crinkley Bottoms
: Aye Up What?
: Where Eagles Wade
: After the Floods
: The Mystery of the Missing Glove
: A Too Short Walk
: One Hundred and Onesfell
: Back to the Beginning
: BOOTskiboys in Saalbach
- 21st March
: Los Chicos
y las Chicas de la Bota
11th - 14th May
: Peaked Too Soon
Click on the photos for an enlargement or related large
download a log of which Wainwrights have
been done by which BOOTboy
in the "modern" era, i.e. since the advent
click on Wainwrights.
anyone wants to claim other peaks, please let me know
and I will submit them to the adjudication committee!