9th November 2014

Two walks rolled into one from Newby Bridge


Walk Overview
Time 9:25am to 3:30pm
Duration 6 hr 5 min
Distance 9.5 mile
Ascent 1900 ft
Walking with Jennifer and Rod Hepplewhite
Newby Bridge - Summer House Knott - Finsthwaite - Low Dam - High Dam - Low Dam - Finsthwaite - Wintering Park - Newby Bridge - Great Wood - Canny Hill Tarn - Bigland Barrow - Hazelrigg - Hazelrigg Lane - Canny Hill - Newby Bridge
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Roadside Parking, Newby Bridge

This is a starting point chosen for because there are few other choices in the immediate area. It really is nothing more than a slightly wider section in the road which is very muddy after rain.
There are only enough spaces for about 6 cars and despite the negatives, it does exactly what it says on the tin and offers somewhere to leave the car while you walk in the area.

Route Map

We were asked if we'd like to join Rod for two separate, short walks from Newby Bridge today. Two walks yes, but linked together into one longer walk. The walk began just down the road from the bridge where you have a close up view of the River Leven and this long curved weir. While we were standing here we couldn't help but notice just how close that house is to the level of the water. It seems complete recklessness that anyone would even contemplate buying a house in that location.

Looking more to the left we see the bridge itself.

Up the steps we go to the viewpoint.

And here's the view.

From the viewpoint we head back to the main path and before too long we reach the tower on Summer House Knott.

to Honour the
Officers, Seamen and Marrines
of the
whose matchless Conduct and
irresistible Valour, decisively defeated
the Fleets of France, Spain and Holland,
and preserved and protected

Looking back to the tower as we walk through the woodland on route to Finsthwaite.

We leave the woods and cross the fields to reach the lovely little village of Finsthwaite.

Finsthwaite Church.

If you happen to book a caravan holiday near Finsthwaite for next summer I'd suggest you ask to see a picture of it first. Just in case. . . .


I know when I'm beat and it was here that I gave in and put the waterproof jacket on.

Low Dam is reached first.

Before heading up to High Dam Jennifer and Rod wait patiently for me to catch up. They could have carried on because the higher tarn is just up there.

High Dam reflections.

Even without any sunshine the reflections were lovely around here today. Well worth the full circuit of the tarn we did.

We're back at the dam now and we from here retrace our route back to Finsthwaite.

After walking through Finsthwaite and across the fields, we head back into woodland.


Now we're back where we started, , , no, we're not accidentally walking around in circles, the walk just happens to go past the cars. We could have gone home from this point and continued the route as a separate walk on another day but we'd planned to combine everything together to make a good long walk. An advantage to doing things this way was that there was no need to carry any food around with us. It made more sense to leave it in the car and make this our lunch spot.

Windermere exits into the River Leven and to say the least, a heck of a lot of water flows through here. Just take a look at the 1:50,000 scale map and see the size of the water catchment area.


After a short walk along a minor road and a nice country lane, we emerge onto the open fellside. It's a pity about the greyness of the day because this really is a nice place.

Ah, you'll notice all that mud on the ground there. By the time we got back to the cars, we had lots of this stuff on us.

We pass by Canny Hill Tarn.


Looking back towards Windermere from the higher ground just north of Bigland Barrow.


Not the clearest conditions by any stretch of the imagination.
Bigland Barrow is home to this lookout platform left over from WW2. It's a bit rickety but we managed to get to the top without anyone needing first aid. Given that today is Remembrance Sunday it seemed appropriate that we had a discussion about the people that must have stood up here for real.

Well, the route from Bigland Barrow down to here was certainly a bit of an adventure. It rained most of the way, someone had 'removed' the bridge across a stream, the tree roots made it quite slippery and several unavoidable areas were above ankle deep in stinking mud. I suppose you can't expect all fell walking to be easy, straightforward or clean.

Anyone fancy a game of chicken?

Don't panic, I haven't joined the Bus Stop appreciation society (yet).
However, this one really does need to be appreciated.

The more we looked the more we saw.

I'm sure there are many places up and down the country where this wouldn't last more than half an hour before some idiot decided it would look better covered in spray paint or broken into smaller pieces.

David Hall -
Lake District Walks