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  #1  
Old December 21st, 2011, 09:11 AM
Andrew Stannard Andrew Stannard is offline
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Default A Winter walk in the Lake District.

Hi,

I had an enjoyable, if rather chilly day up in the Lake Dsitrct yesterday, and though I would share some photos from the day.

Our route started at valley level, where there was no snow, before making it's way up on to the summits. Up high the snow was drifting up to 1m, and the icy conditions meant that crampons and ice-axe were something of a necessity. Good fun, but it did mean my pack was somewhat heavier than I would have liked!

The light was really flat all day, so I was looking from some compositions that helped had some depth to the images. A small patch of brightness in the clouds in the distance was also a useful ally.




This first image is from half way up looking down towards Blea Tarn. The snow underfoot was still relatively soft at this point, and somewhat patchy. Not very many people out on the hills, and a lovely sense of solitude.




A similar shot from higher up and shot from a much more precarious position. A slip here would have resulted in a somewhat rapid slide and fall all the way down to the tarn, so I was actually sat down with my ice axe firmly wedged into the ice between me and my rucsack belt to prevent any such incident!





By this time we had made our way to the summit of High Street, had a lunch sheltered from the icy wind, and were now making our way back down. The view slowly opened up to provide this image looking back down to Small Water and Haweswater below.



All in all a great day out, even if the legs are somewhat tired today!



Thanks for looking,

Andrew.
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  #2  
Old December 22nd, 2011, 02:30 AM
Andrew Stannard Andrew Stannard is offline
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And one more from the same trip....




This was taken at the end of the day as the weather was beginning to take a turn for the worst. This waterfall can often have much less water in, but the snow higher up on the fells was beginning to slowly thaw, adding to the volume of water flowing down the fells.


Andrew.
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Old December 22nd, 2011, 02:54 AM
Cem_Usakligil Cem_Usakligil is offline
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All great views Andrew, thanks for sharing them with us. I was quite scared when I read about the possible slip down to the tarn coupled to your second picture. Please be very careful! :)
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Old December 22nd, 2011, 06:29 AM
CD Holden CD Holden is offline
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Andrew,
Thanks for posting. That's quite a view. I find it odd that the closest tarn has snow all around it, but the second and third tarns further away are dry, with snow not far away.
Strange, but still a nice view. I always enjoy that feeling of solitude when I think I've got the whole place to myself.
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Old December 22nd, 2011, 06:57 AM
Andrew Stannard Andrew Stannard is offline
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Quote:
I was quite scared when I read about the possible slip down to the tarn coupled to your second picture.
Cem, I was somewhat cautious at the prospect myself :) In all seriousness though if you are out and about in icy conditions and terrain like this, then it really is important to make sure you have appropriate gear and clothing - and that you have some experience in using them. One slip could be all it takes.


Quote:
I find it odd that the closest tarn has snow all around it, but the second and third tarns further away are dry.
This is something of a trick of perspective. There is actually a fall off in the terrain of about 800ft between the closest tarn and the next one along - this being achieved rather rapidly by the river via series of pretty waterfalls.


Thanks for looking,
Andrew.
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  #6  
Old December 22nd, 2011, 08:44 AM
StuartRae StuartRae is offline
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Hi Andy,

Thanks for the photos.
It looks like a grand day out - I'm jealous. I've always known the tarn in #1 as Blea Water; you had me fooled for a while.
Did you make the ascent by Rough Crag or Nan Bield?

Regards,

Stuart
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Old December 22nd, 2011, 10:17 AM
Andrew Stannard Andrew Stannard is offline
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Hi Stuart,

A grand day out i t certainly was. Correction required on my part there - Blea Water indeed. Thought I'd make that mistake just to make sure you were paying attention ;)

We went up via Rough Crag and down via Nan Bield. I've always enjoyed ridge routes that end up straight at the summit, Hall's Fell on Blencathra being another great example.


Regards,
Andrew.
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Old December 22nd, 2011, 12:00 PM
StuartRae StuartRae is offline
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Hi Andy,

I've never done Rough Crag. Wanted to, but the opportunity never arose. I believe it was one of Wainwright's favourite ascents.

I was wondering how many Blea (ON blá - dark, deep blue) Tarns there are in the Lakes. Eskdale, Langdale and between Watendlath and Wythburn. I've an inkling that there may be one more. Any ideas?

Regards,

Stuart
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  #9  
Old December 22nd, 2011, 01:37 PM
Ben Rubinstein Ben Rubinstein is offline
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Love the first one, the Lake District has always had a special place in my heart, only a 2 hour drive from my home in Manchester to get right into the centre and it one of those places which albeit relatively tiny compared to the vast spaces of the American West for example or even the Highlands of Scotland, would still take more than a lifetime to fully explore and picture adequately.
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  #10  
Old December 23rd, 2011, 12:07 AM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is offline
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Andrew,

Your third picture gives such an extended view and is my favorite. This would make a remarkable print. I'd even consider making a giant photographic mural with ceramic tiles from it!




What an awe-inspiring experience it must have been to view this with the cold clean air in your face! I've never been to the Lake District and wonder if it's approachable to see these magnificent views any way other than climbing as you have.

Thanks for bringing us these magnificent views of , (apart from the great waterfall waterfalls which we have similar in the USA), some of the most unusual landscape I've ever seen.

Asher
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  #11  
Old December 23rd, 2011, 02:57 AM
Andrew Stannard Andrew Stannard is offline
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Hi,

Thanks for the comments.

Stuart - I've got a mapping program on my PC, and it doesn't pick up any more Blea Tarns other than those you have mentioned. There's a Blea Tarn Resevoir just outside Lancaster, but that seem to be about it. There's also Bleaberry Tarn at the top of Sour Milk Gill in Buttermere. Of course the mapping program may not have some of the smaller tarns listed, so perhaps I will scour the map for a while!


Ben - Indeed the Lake District is a little gem. I'm just between Blackpool and Preston, so not too far for me either. I've been more times than I can count, but each time you always find a new view and a new track to explore.


Asher - Hoping to make a print of this image shortly, although a bit more optimisation to carry out first. I've recently switched to printing my images onto Hahnemuhle Photo Rag. You certainly lose a bit of 'pop' and DR compared to gloss and lustre paper, but I've fallen in love with the almost painterly effect that it imparts onto the print and its gentle texture.

There are a number of fairly high road passes in the Lake District that provide fabulous views with very little effort. See this link for some more info, and note the links to the other passes at the bottom:

http://www.rural-roads.co.uk/lakes/wrynose.shtml

Well worth a visit to the area, perhaps we should arrange an OPF meet-up one day!


Haweswater reservoir, which is the 2nd and 3rd area of water in the image you prefer, was actually originally a small natural lake, but was turned into a reservoir in the 1920s to supply water by gravity feed down to Manchester, about 80 miles away. The village was flooded as part of this process, and when the reservoir is dry you can still see some of the remains poking through the water. Some further info below:

http://lancashire.greatbritishlife.c...mardale-23938/
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Old December 23rd, 2011, 11:40 AM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Stannard View Post


Asher - Hoping to make a print of this image shortly, although a bit more optimisation to carry out first. I've recently switched to printing my images onto Hahnemuhle Photo Rag. You certainly lose a bit of 'pop' and DR compared to gloss and lustre paper, but I've fallen in love with the almost painterly effect that it imparts onto the print and its gentle texture.

There are a number of fairly high road passes in the Lake District that provide fabulous views with very little effort. See this link for some more info, and note the links to the other passes at the bottom:

http://www.rural-roads.co.uk/lakes/wrynose.shtml

Well worth a visit to the area, perhaps we should arrange an OPF meet-up one day!

Andrew,

That's a suggestion well worth considering!! I wonder how much time it would take, starting from London, to get up to there and take some pics, no ice axes needed and connect back to the Chunnel to Paris? I only intended to spend about a day in London. Now I'm wondering!!

Asher
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  #13  
Old December 23rd, 2011, 12:14 PM
Andrew Stannard Andrew Stannard is offline
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Hi Asher,

I'll have a look at driving times, not sure off the top of my head, but by train you can get from London Euston to Windermere in the Lake District in about 3 1/2hrs with one change of train. Driving would be longer at a guess, perhaps 4-5hrs.

Plenty to do and see without needing to resort to climbing high. The image in my link below was taken on the roadside about 2 miles away from Windermere as an example.

Langdale Pikes from the shore of Windermere


Regards,
Andrew.
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Old December 23rd, 2011, 12:46 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Stannard View Post
Hi Asher,

I'll have a look at driving times, not sure off the top of my head, but by train you can get from London Euston to Windermere in the Lake District in about 3 1/2hrs with one change of train. Driving would be longer at a guess, perhaps 4-5hrs.

Plenty to do and see without needing to resort to climbing high. The image in my link below was taken on the roadside about 2 miles away from Windermere as an example.

Langdale Pikes from the shore of Windermere

Andrew,

Your pictures are exceptional! How much snow is there right now? It seems like 3 hours by train, but I wonder how much time realistically one needs for transfers between trains? Some of them are just 5-6 minutes. In that respect, 8 mins seems a long time, LOL!

In practice, does the second train wait a minute or two if the first one is late?

Asher
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Old December 23rd, 2011, 12:47 PM
StuartRae StuartRae is offline
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Hi Asher,

Quote:
Driving would be longer at a guess, perhaps 4-5hrs.
From here in Wiltshire to Keswick I allow 5 hours, maybe do it in 41/2.

You need to stay at least overnight; it's not doable in one day. Another good round would be Keswick, Borrowdale, Honister Pass, Buttermere, Newlands Hause, the Newlands Valley and back to Keswick.

Andy
Quote:
I've got a mapping program on my PC, and it doesn't pick up any more Blea Tarns other than those you have mentioned.
Neither does the map in my brain :) I fancy it was Bleaberry Tarn that was leading me astray. Thanks for looking.

Regards,

Stuart
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  #16  
Old December 23rd, 2011, 03:30 PM
Don Ferguson Jr. Don Ferguson Jr. is offline
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Andrew, very nice series of the Lake District and I enjoyed your telling of the trip.
Don
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  #17  
Old December 24th, 2011, 04:38 AM
Andrew Stannard Andrew Stannard is offline
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Asher:

There is a thaw at the moment, so most of the snow is now gone, with just the higher summits and sheltered areas keeping their covering.

I think most would agree with me if I said the trains in the UK aren't fantastically reliable. I'm not sure there's any particular policy of waiting for connecting trains unfortunately. If the first train is late then in practice the best you can hope for is that the connecting train is also running behind! We need the efficiency of the Japanese trains!

I'd agree with Stuart, in that to do the area justice an overnight stay would always be preferred.



Don - Thanks for looking and glad you liked the images.


Regards,
Andrew.
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  #18  
Old December 24th, 2011, 11:31 AM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is offline
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Andrew and Stuart,

Thanks for all the information and advice! Given the unreliability of the trains, ultrashort change times and the pressure that would take, I think we'd better make that for a spring or summer tour rather than a rush. We'd like to be visiting the slate works and various villages too and getting to understand Cambria. So it will be just London this time! Still, I have no an idea of the locations and the places to read up on.

Hopefully then, sometime in 2012 then.

Asher
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Old December 24th, 2011, 12:16 PM
Andrew Stannard Andrew Stannard is offline
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Hi Asher,

I think that sounds like a sensible plan. It would be great to have a mini OPF meet-up, Id certainly be happy to do so, and I'm sure there are others on the forum who are not too far away.

Merry Christmas to all,
Andrew.
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Old December 24th, 2011, 04:17 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Stannard View Post
Hi Asher,

I think that sounds like a sensible plan. It would be great to have a mini OPF meet-up, Id certainly be happy to do so, and I'm sure there are others on the forum who are not too far away.

Merry Christmas to all,
Andrew.
Sounds great, Andrew!

Let's have more of these chilly but beautiful images in the meanwhile. This is great countryside to explore. I imagine there might be even some Roman fort ruins, or at least excavations going on. I wonder how it looks in spring with wild plants flowering. Is the place then overrun with tourists?

Asher
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