Anotherplace

Walking with Wainwright

For the last two years writer and artist Colin Hindle has been following the guides written by Alfred Wainwright, documenting the best views he finds in words and drawings.

In his own words: “My objective is simple: ‘to create the most beautiful book I possibly can’.”

Words and drawings: Colin Hindle

Hallin Fell 1271′

Hallin Fell is the jewel in the loveliest square mile in the Ullswater Valley, that of Martindale. Hallin Fell rewards the walker with the best views for the least effort. Its’ grassy slopes can be climbed barefoot if you choose from St. Peter’s church in 10 minutes. The best way to reach Hallin Fell is by Ullswater Steamers’ to Howtown from either end of the lake Pooley Bridge, or Glenridding.

Route: From Howtown Pier take the path along the lake shore turning left away from the Lake when the gate at the top of th esteps is reached. The spectacular Hause is on the left, 4 or 5 hairpin bends in rapid succession. The path up Hallin Fell is directly opposite St. Peter’s Church, steep initially and bearing right towards the summit cairn. The cairn when reached is one of the most impressive in Lakeland, a true landmark visible from miles distant, beautifully cut stone standing 14′ high and 4′ square.

The view north to Pooley Bridge is excellent with Arthur’s Pike, Bonscale Pike and Loadpot Hill to the East, Penrith and the Pennines distant. To the west is Blencathra (also known as Saddleback), and the rolling hills of Watermillock.

Hallin Fell should not simply be descended: two important detours are necessary; firstly the walker should visit the outcrop overlooking the middle reaches Ullswater which are obscured from the summit, there are magnificient views of Sleet and Place Fell in the foreground with the Hellevellyn range distant to the South West. Secondly before the steep descent to the church there is an outcrop to the right which gives a rare double valley view of Martindale and Boredale side by side.

Hellvellyn 3118′

Route: Glenridding to Greenside Mine, to Red Tarn, Swirral Edge, Summit, Striding Edge, Grisedale valley returning to Glenridding: a full day’s walk recommended on clear days.

Hellvellyn is both the most walked and most deadly of all Lakeland Fells, it is the third highest in England behind Scafell Pike and Scafell. Start walking up through Glenridding on Greenside road, crossing Greenside Beck after the mine, this brings the walker to Red Tarn. Take a moment to drink in the spectacular amphitheatre created by Striding Edge, the summit and Swirral Edge. Swirral Edge (and Striding Edge) is a good scramble but to be avoided in wet or icy weather as a slip can have life changing consequences! The walker is rewarded with a large flat summit commanding 360 degree views on a clear day of virtually the whole of Cumbria. The descent via Striding Edge and Grisedale valley drops between Patterdale and Glenridding completing a classic lakeland loop.

Gowbarrow Fell 1579′

Route: Aira Force, Gowbarrow Fell, Green Hill, Aira Force

Aira Force is the most stunning waterfall in the Ullswater valley and worth a trip on its’ own, however an even more rewarding day can be had for those with a little more adventure. Walk up through Aira Force taking in both bridges and High Force, continuing along Aira Beck with the stream on your left until a stone wall is reached. Follow the stone wall up to the plateau of Gowbarrow Fell, the summit cairn will be in sight. The summit however doesn’t give the best views. Green Hill is a ten minute walk toward Ullswater atop the plateau, and reveals Ullswater in all its’ glory beneath you. The walker will be mesmerised by its’ splendour. The descent back to Aira Force is enjoyed with the southern reaches of Ullswater being in constant view.

Copyright Colin Hindle Oct 2017

Many of the best views are not from the summits, but often from various points around the fells; in addition many world class views are to be had from ground level, these are documented also and identified with a wheelchair logo, so that those who can’t access the fell tops can still enjoy the breathtaking scenery.

Book One from Colin Hindle is to be published at the end of 2018.

To book your stay — and follow in Colin’s footsteps in the Ullswater Valley — visit the rooms page.