Grizedale, Hawkhead, Ulverston.

Night No 36/2018 staying in my caravan. This is night 2 at the Coniston Coppice C&MC Site near Coniston in Cumbria.

Got up around 0600 and took the dogs down through the wooded part of the site. It was early, and with nobody around, I let them have a sneaky 5 mins off the lead! I'm discovering that Consiton is not the best area for dogs if your dogs are not used to all walking on leads. The town itself is fine, dogs are welcome in pubs and shops, but the sheep are all over the place here.

After breakfast, wanted to head to a forest to let the dogs run wild for a while. The nearby Grizedale Forest Park would fit the bill. It's only around 8 miles, but the twisting roads make it a 25min journey! Worth it though.

The little village of Hawkshead. Nice little place, but the road out towards Grizedale was extremely narrow and tight.

Once at Grizedale, walked a nice riverside route.

The bluebells were out in full bloom.

This pair absolutely loved it.

Lovely surroundings.

Returned to the carpark and paid the £2 (!) to get out. Number plate recognition here with the FC and can cost as mush as £8 a day!

Took a right 'Postman Pat' road south towards Ulverston.

Found a branch of 'Booths' and got some rare cheese. Well, rare up our way.

After some lunch, took the dogs out of the site to Coniston Water, following the path towards Torver, a nice wee settlement a few miles from here.

The weather, as ever, is glorious. Very warm even with the breeze. A rare opportunity in a fenced area to let the dogs run around (even though signs request dogs are kept on leads!). This is definitely not an area for you if you are a Libertarian! Perfect if you are a sign maker, the variety of 'Orders' and 'Private' are unreal. There was one here which read something like 'This land belongs to the University of Birmingham. Please keep to the path by the lakeside'. That is despite there being a road and a gravel track through 'their' land.

A lovely afternoon.

A wee steamship on the water.

I wanted to visit Ambleside, so I left it until after 4pm thinking it would be quieter, but no chance. Again, it was absolutely heaving when I got there, so just turned round and went back towards Coniston. I noticed a small woodland walk on the way back near Oxen Fell, but when I stopped, I noticed this National Trust parking patch was £5 for 'up to' 2 hours! It's the Scotsman in me, no way I would be paying that and I think they enforce these things down here!

On the upside, stopped in Coniston and in the nice little gift shop, 'Just for Ewe', I got a copy of Wainwrights Pictorial Guide to the Lakeland Fells, Book 4, The Southern Fells. A lovely wee book which will mind me of this area for sure.

It's been a bit hot to go shooting up the hills, but I'll see how the forecast is tomorrow.


  1. Good notes, Iain. Very descriptive and give a great feel for the area. If I remember correctly, one of the Ambleside "parking tricks" was to park at the University which is on the edge of the village (as well as where the Sky Lakes Ultra starts and ends) for half or less of the cost of the municipal car parks. Steve instead circled the higher streets (on the hillside of the main road) until he found a non-yellow lined space for free. That picture of the Cheshire cheese made my mouth water, so if you want to make an older brother happy with a simple gift ... Finally, a thought on which to ponder as you walk tomorrow; if what you are seeing is really a case of a mature National Park system compared to what we have more recently started in Scotland, do you want the Cairngorms, Trossachs, etc. to look and feel like the Lake District in 30-40years?

    1. The biggest difference is that this area was made a National Park when it hadn't been destroyed by bad town planning, council initiatives etc. Think, Balloch as being the HQ of Loch Lomond NP, or Aviemore being the equivalent in the Cairngorm NP. Unless they clear these absolute eyesores, then there's no way they'd mature into an area like this.


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