Over the top

This post was originally published over on the By Duddon’s Side project blog: http://byduddonsside.wordpress.com

Having chickened out of it on my quick recce to the Duddon Valley a fortnight ago, the time had come to bite the bullet and see if my car was up to the challenge of driving over Wrynose Pass. Success here would influence logistical decisions later on in the project, so I had to find out if it was an option or not.

morning walk into town

The view from Dove Cottage in the morning was of snow-dusted peaks and lingering cloud, so I wasn’t sure what I would be met with once I started to climb the pass.

Wrynose Pass

Well, a closer view of the snow, for a start!


Wrynose Pass

Wrynose Pass

Also some glorious views and dramatically-lit landscapes.



Wrynose Pass

I justified several photo stops in terms of giving the car a chance to cool down a bit!

I reached the top with no automobile-related dramas and crested the top of the pass to be greeted with…

Wrynose Pass

Ugh! A valley full of raincloud! Typical!


Wrynose Pass

It brightened up for a few more photographs and an opportunity to pause and reflect on how rapidly the Duddon had grown from the tiny little becks I’d seen earlier, to something that could now reasonably be called a river.


Cockley Beck bridge


I found myself wondering how one would have traveled between Grasmere and the Duddon Valley at the end of the 17th Century. Would it have been something you could have done as a day trip, or would it have been an undertaking of a few days?


First encounter with the Duddon

This post was originally published over on the By Duddon’s Side project blog: http://byduddonsside.wordpress.com

I travelled up to the Lake District for a preliminary meeting at the Wordsworth Museum. Having a bit of time to spare I thought I’d take a detour to check out the valley that will be the main focus of this project.

Visibility was somewhat reduced and it was quite squelchy underfoot, but after 10 minutes strolling around on the banks of the Duddon near Ulpha I could understand that this place is a little bit special – I’m very much looking forward to having a proper explore.





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