Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Day 4 - a walk around Grasmere and a side trip to Windermere

When you are an old codger you need to take it a little easier than when you were a whippersnapper. A day away from the trail every few days is a very good idea. My rest days are at Grasmere and Kirkby Stephen. Each place is big enough to allow for a bit of an exploration.

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The B&B was on the northern outskirts of Grasmere. This old graveyard was on the way into town.

Virtually every house is made or covered with this stone.

I suspect this tree would be magnificent in Autumn.

The pharmacy where I got some extra supplies for my feet.

I remembered that Jon, the bloke I met at Stonethwaite had recommended that I do a side trip to Windermere on the bus.

The village green.

Spring had arrived.

Although Grasmere is a popular tourist village, there were parts that were not all that crowded.

Entrance to the graveyard behind the local church.

The last daffodil in the garden.

His grave stone is on the left.

St. Oswald's Church in the background. It now is used by the Church of England and the Methodists with services at different times. The Methos find out how bad Hell will be for them. The C of E's find out how to make the best of Hell. 

The interior of the church is quite unusual. On the right is the main worshiping area. The left hand side appears to be the overflow area.

The ropes leading to the bell tower.

The organ, quite large for a small church.

Restaurant by the stream beside the church.

The nearby lake. To my surprise, the village seems to ignore the lake instead of using it as a feature.I would have expected this area to be a park. 

An unusually modern building on the way to Dove Cottage where Wordsworth lived for eight years.

I need to remember this on my walk.

When Wordsworth lived at Dove Cottage, he could lie in bed and look at this view.

I had been advised to try the Sarah Nelson's Gingerbread.

Inside the shop.

The ginger bread. To be honest I was not overly impressed. There was not a strong enough flavour of ginger.

After a bit more walking about the few streets I had seen enough so I got on a double-decker bus that went down to Windamere. This is the southern end of Grasmere Lake.

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The lake is the largest natural lake in Britain. 

There is a path that goes beside the road as it winds along beside the lake. Unfortunately there is so much traffic, it would not be particularly pleasant.

I am not sure if this house is Rydal Mount where Wordsworth moved to towards the end of his life.

Coming into Ambleside.

It's a larger place than Grasmere but not as large as Windermere.

A marina. I expect the lake is a zoo in summer.

The bus arrived at Windermere Station and I started to walk down to the nearby Bowness. I realized that is was over a mile away so I got on another bus down to the water. The whole town is full of hotels, B&B and Guest Houses. To be honest, I wouldn't want to go here, particularly in summer when the place is crowded.

Marianne will remember these rowing boats from 1974 when we went for a row on the lake.

A swan came up to greet me.

This is where the various steamers go off to tour the lake.

Because of something funny, I started to talk to the couple on the right.

This was what was funny. The girls could not get their boat to move out into the lake.

Eventually some bloke from the rental company hopped into another boat and dragged them out into the lake. Note that you have to wear a red life jacket these days.

Finally the girls were rowing. Hooray for them. It was not exactly the kind of weather that would have made rowing very pleasant and I doubt I could have got Marianne into a boat this day.

If I visited the area in summer, I would not bother to bring a car expecting to drive around. Even in May it was very busy. I would just use the bus.


  1. Oh, I think I could have been persuaded. But, really, Grasmere looks a lot nicer.

  2. Hope you didn't feed the swan Dad, it'll be following you along the trail!

  3. I laughed first at the swan...he's what we call a Beach Bum:) Then chuckled at the girls. Hope you got a nice rest and your feet are happier for Day 5.

  4. You are doing such a great job conveying the feel and the age of the area. I hope you are feeling well and that those beers keep showing up when you most need them!