Rydal Water and Grasmere.

Start. Rydal (St Mary's Church).

Route. Rydal - Steps End Wood - Rydal Water - Grasmere - Red Bank Road - Grasmere village - Dove Cottage - Rydal/Grasmere Coffin Route - White Moss Common - Rydal/Grasmere Coffin Route - Rydal Mount - Rydal (St Mary's Church).

Notes. With strong winds and freezing conditions battering the high fells I opted for a valley walk today. The round of Rydal Water is possibly one of the most popular low level walks in the Lake District, but few people extend the round to include Grasmere, why not? it makes for an excellent half day jaunt, and if you set out early as I did you can always have breakfast in one of the the many eateries in Grasmere. Come along there's not as much snow as I would have liked and strangely little ice under foot on this winter leg stretcher through exquisite Lakeland scenery.

I parked at St Mary's Church, slipped two nuggets into the honesty box then headed round the corner to the Badger Bar, opposite the bar a path descended into Steps End Wood, I descended with it crossing the River Rothay to join a well trod lake shore path, this was my guide north along the edge of Rydal Water, passed Jobson Close and the woodland of White Moss to access the shores of Grasmere. I wandered over an icy pebble beach to gain entrance to Deer Bolts Wood. On I strolled drinking in quite special views over the lake. On leaving the wood the path continued unhindered before swinging sharp left then ascending to join the Red Bank Road, this narrow ribbon of tarmac guided me into Grasmere, where I'd promised myself a full English.

Energised for the return leg I made my way to Dove Cottage once home to William Wordsworth. The lane climbed passed a coffin rest, finger-posts reliably informed me I'd joined the Old Coffin Route to Rydal, but I wasn't heading back just yet. On reaching a patch of boggy ground and some Lakeland cottages a snow covered path ascended a rocky hillock to my right, the narrow trod disappeared round the corner. The path little used guided me into staggering views from White Moss Common, maybe I should keep it a secret but there I've said it now, go take a look. After soaking them up I re-traced my steps then continued following the Old Coffin Route back to Rydal.

view route map.


Winter conditions in Steps End Wood, viewing Silver How over Rydal Water.

Rising above Rydal Water, Nab Scar.

Near Jobson Close looking to Silver How.

Silver How again this time from the approach to Grasmere.

Dark against the brightness of the snow, Penny Rock Wood.

Wonderful wintry views over Grasmere, Helm Crag and Seat Sandal taking centre stage.

An icy wonderland on the shores of Grasmere, looking to the snow painted slopes of Red Screes reaching across the horizon.

My route through Deer Bolts Wood.

Who needs summer when winter brings views like this on of Heron Pike and Nab Scar across Grasmere.

Let the snow dressed shore line carry the eye to the slopes of Loughrigg Fell.

Heading along the shore of Grasmere with this stunning scene for company, Seat Sandal and Stone Arthur dressed in their winters best.

The rugged heights of Stone Arthur softened by a blanket of the white stuff.

On a blistering cold day, Seat Sandal above Grasmere village.

Dressed to impress, it has to be white, Heron Pike and Nab Scar as seen across Grasmere.

Magical views to the south from near The Lea, reaching across the skyline the Low Pike/High Pike Ridge leading to Dove Crag just out of shot.

Loughrigg Fell as seen from the Red Bank Road on the approach to Grasmere.

Dove Cottage home to the poet William Wordsworth from 1799 to 1808.

Coffin Rest above Dove Cottage, one of two passed today.

A few shots from the summit of White Moss Common, Rydal Water....

....Grasmere backed by Silver How and....

....Loughrigg Fell.

Coffin Rest above Nab Cottage.

From the Coffin Rest views over Rydal Water.

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