2nd November 2013

A half dry walk around Thirlmere


Walk Overview
Time 7:15 to 11:15am
Duration 4 hr
Distance 10.4 mile
Ascent 700 ft
Walking with On my own
A591 - Bridge End Farm - Thirlmere Dam - Armboth - Hause Point - Dob Gill - Steele End - Woods above A591 - Swirls - A591
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Roadside parking, Bridge End Farm junction with A591

With room for only about a dozen or so cars this spot tends to fill up rather quickly. If you do manage to get parked this is a really handy place to begin a walk onto the southern ridge of High Rigg or even Thirlmere which is only a shot walk down the road opposite the parking spaces.


Route Map

Last night I studied all the available weather forecasts to try and work out what would be possible today. BBC, ITV and internet all agreed that it would be dry first thing but would deteriorate into a day of strong winds and very heavy rain. They were all correct. Sadly for me, it deteriorated a little sooner than I'd hoped for. Never mind; last weekend was spent with a paint brush and a roller in my hand, so rain, hail or shine, I was ready for a walk today.

Passing by Bridge End Farm.

and from the other side of the farm.

Raven Crag above Thirlmere Dam and Thirlmere itself.


Just after taking this picture I noticed a blond haired damsel waving at me from the turret on the left. Obviously she was she was in some sort of distress and had assumed that I would rescue her, , , , yeah, right.
"Listen lady, you lot fought for equality and now that you got it you still expect to be rescued by us knights in shining armour. You got yourself into this mess so you can get yourself out of it"

A view back along the dam. The fell in the background is Great Dodd / Calfhow Pike.

The autumn colours were lovely today as I walked along the western side of Thirlmere. I enjoy a walk along here at any time of year, and although it sounds a bit strange, I have to admit the smell of damp earth and the constant sound of running water on days like this always seems to add an extra ingredient to the satisfaction.

A view down Thirlmere.

This one is talking about the road over the dam
and this one is talking about the road along the western side of the lake


Looking back.

A close up of Dalehead Hall. I had expected to be walking past it later in the walk but the weather had other ideas.




This is the Scottish sounding Wyth Burn. On the left hand side of the beck a path takes you up to The Bog; a well named place if ever there was one. After all the recent rain, I'm sure it's living up to its soggy reputation.

Talking about well named places, this is Steel End. Found at the end of Steel Fell.

I can't remember where I was when I took this picture. Here it is anyway.

I'm at the furthest point from the car now and looking across to Dunmail Raise. That's Helm Crag in the distance.

Birkside Gill lets you see just how much water is currently running off the fells.

Steel Fell (the fell) and Steel End (the farm), seen from the forest track.



I've spied this old building many times as I've walked through the woods above Thirlmere, but I've never managed to talk myself into walking up to take a closer look, , , until today.
Talk about spooky!!
When I had a closer look I half expected some old hermit or a tramp living rough to jump out and scare the life out of me.

I know it was still only mid morning but distance wise I'd just about earned something to eat and you can't get much better than the view from that seat down there. As soon as I'd taken a bite from my first sandwich the heavens opened with a vengeance. A little bit of advance warning would have been nice but I still managed to get the waterproofs on before getting too wet. That's more than I can say for the sandwich after placing it on the seat while I sorted myself out. Unfortunately it rained for the remainder of the walk; all the time getting heavier and heavier.

I'm almost at Swirls now and while I was there I thought I'd take shelter for a few minutes next to the toilets. I've no idea why because it was pretty obvious it wasn't going to stop raining but it seemed like a good idea at the time.

It was absolutely chucking it down so it seemed wise to head straight for the car instead of taking the slightly more time consuming walk next to the lake. I'm sure a few of the people driving past must have thought I was crazy. Perhaps I am. I couldn't understand why I never saw another soul the whole time I was out !

And that's it for today folks !!

David Hall -
Lake District Walks