Oh! No! Sow How!
16th January 2013
seem to be flying in to join us.
First we welcomed Air Commodore James,
with his Piper
Arrow. Next was Group Captain Glider Pilot
John and now we have welcomed a master balloonist to
our midst. What next- a rocket scientist?
new blast of hot air is Martin Cn., for long time the
proprietor and Air Marshall of High Adventure Balloons,
often to be seen flying over to the Kendal area from
the lower end of Windermere.
Here we can see
a 2008 picture of a relaxed Martin, centre
stage, flying "hands off". To his left,
me then my brother, Alan.
useful it was to have someone who didn't need a map.
He might not recognise things from the ground,
but his working life had been spent in looking at the
area, map-like, from 2,000 feet.
This local knowledge
was to prove most valuable.
met at Staveley-in-Cartmel, which ought not be confused
with Staveley near Kendal. The former is a hamlet east
of the south end of Windermere; one that none of us
had previously explored. I had heard that there
was a miniature railway that occasionally opens to the
public. Understandably, it that was not the case
today but the track is substantial and looks as if it
will be a good place to take the grandchildren.
of a surprise, on the other side of the tracks, was
a field full of Alpacas. We wondered what happened
to these creatures- Alpackered Lunches perhaps?
on photo for more Alpacas
intention was to head up through Chapel House Wood on
to the top of Swainson and we more or less achieved
that objective but not necessarily by the intended route!
From here on, Martin's aerial knowledge proved
tremendously helpful in finding a sensible way through
the quite dense woodland and out onto the Gummer's How
I am sure I have said in previous reports, Gummer's
How is a gem of a hill- a mountain in miniature and
a great place to take kids (or not very fit visitors)
to give them a taste of the fells without too much effort.
Swainson to Gummer's How
last 200 feet or so is an enjoyable scramble without
any danger. And the views from the top, even on
a cold grey day, provide a tremendous panorama of the
course, it now being gone noon, we had to find a place
out of the biting wind so that Tony could refuel, following
which we dropped down by the reservoir and tried to
find a way into Heights Tarn.
However, the track
was gated, barbed above and carried a stern keep out notice.
We were not wanted.
Martin knew from balloon landing experience that
this was not a farmer likely to take kindly to unwanted
visitors straying on his land so we had to retrace our
steps to Sow How Lane.
Again, we had to avoid
Sow How itself for similar reasons.
we deprived him of the pleasure of our company.
No! Sow How!
We took the paths
and trails back towards Swainson. This time we
dropped down to Chapel House Plantation and then on
to Chapel House where didn't see a chapel. We
did however visit St Mary's Church; strangely the only
Windermere local deanery church not to be featured in
the otherwise excellent Visit
The graveyard was looking quite gothic in the
snow. See After
the Conflict for
an interesting account of its inhabitants. Sadly, but understandably
given its isolated location, the church was not
open so we were unable to explore further.
and gothic graveyard
cars were parked at the School House, next door so,
after removing very damp boots, we set off for the Mason's
Arms at Strawberry Bank.
recent visits have been to the restaurant upstairs and
I thought the place had lost its character. Far
from it, downstairs. Today the only significant
changes from forty years ago were the absence of a
grandfather clock and the presence of a couple from Liverpool
who were enjoying a couple of days away from Merseyside.
reminded me of the visit made after our conquest of Coniston Old Man referred
to in BB1302 (with personnel amendment below- see Old
Man Corrected). I recall it being like stepping
in time into someone's front parlour. The fire
was blazing, the seats comfortable, the ale agreeable
and the grandfather clock ticking away soon rendered
and the scousers
we finished at the Brown Horse at Winster, then, bearing
in mind the news on the radio that horse meat was being
used for beefburgers, I could have tortuously concluded
with How Now, Brown Cow?
we were not. But the Masons is a real ale pub
so what do you think to:
Do, True Brew?
16th January 2013
Sitting in a hospital waiting room, unsure when you
are going to be called in for a foot operation is a
great time to take the BOOTboys scribe to task for certain
inaccuracies in his reporting. Ian, accordingly,
phoned to correct my assumption that his Coniston
Old Man visit was the 40th
anniversary of a similar climb. In
fact his initial outing was a rather lesser adventure,
as befits an expdediton after a hard night on the booze,
in brand new heavy leather boots that hadn't yet bedded
in and are giving you mega gyp.
So, my original assumption that the mystery photographer
of the 1973 ascent was Dave G seems to have been correct.
Ian was not on that trip.
Thinking about it, Coniston Old Man as a first ever
fell walk in such circumstances would have been a mega
achievement, even for the Big O.
Ian, hope the operation went well
and you can rejoin
Did Those Feet
did those feet in recent time
upon Kendal's dirty streets?
was this hairy man, un-shod,
Kendal's Wezzy Gezzy seen?
chanced upon him as he stood
cleanse his soles in Cunswick's pool
on his life sublime,
yes, but not a fool.
barefoot man whom we met on Cunswick Scar last week
was featured, puzzling people of Kendal, in Thursday's
find out more, click on The
16th January 2013
climbed in feet:
(OS / Memory Map)
Don, John Hn, Martin Cn, Tony, Stan,
routes are put online in gpx format which
should work with most mapping software. You can follow
our route in detail by downloading bb1303
discover which Wainwright top was visited on which BB outing
For the latest totals of the mileages and heights see: BB Log.
have been gleaned from many sources
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