24 Nov 2021

Hawkshead

21st to 23rd November 2021

Pre covid-19 it was something of a tradition for us to go to the villiage of Hawkshead mid November, so with things starting to get back to normal we thought we'd give it a go.  We used to go to The Croft but they don't take tourers these days and the site is full of fabulous looking lodges which are way out of our price range.  Fortunately we discovered Hawkshead Hall almost three years ago to the day!


Just a short walk into the village, great facilities and pretty quiet at this time of year.

Sunday

Even at this time of year a lot of sites are full at weekends, hence the Sunday start.  We're not keen on their earliest arrival time of 2pm but we stuck to it only to find most pitches occupied when we got there and people setting up!  The pitch we got wasn't one we would have chosen but there aren't really any bad pitches.


After setting everything up we managed to sit outside for a while, but with sunset around 4pm at the moment we thought we would head into the village before it got dark.

One of the pubs was closed for refurbishment and two of the others are not serving food at the moment  due to staff shortages, but the plan was to eat in the caravan anyway.  We bought loads of treats from a couple of the shops and then had a drink in the Kings Arms, which was our favourite pub on previous occasions.  Apparently it is between landlords, with a temporary manager keeping it ticking over.  No food and closed on Mondays!  A snip at £90,000!


Then we popped into the Red Lion, which has only recently re-opened with new owners.  Room and food reviews aren't great but it seemed ok to us and the barman was nice and friendly.

A 15th century window in the Red Lion, discovered during rennovation work.

A disappointing selection of beers in all of the pubs.  A couple of Cumbrian ones in the Kings Arms and one (that D didn't like) in the Red Lion.  Nothing anywhere else (apart from the Queens Head, which is a Robinsons pub, so doesn't count!).  We don't go to Cumbria to drink Hobgoblin!

After dinner we popped back into the village but it was a bit lacking in atmosphere!  A bit disappointing really.

Monday

Fabulous weather for this (or any) time of year!  We set off for a walk around Tarn Hows and up to Black Crag.  We've done this walk before but it's worth doing again.


Not many pics because we forgot the camera...not for the first time this year!  Just phone pics, so not very good quality, but a good reminder of conditions if we look back at this in the future (which is pretty much why we do this blog).





In the afternoon we popped back into the village but the Kings Arms was closed so we didn't hang around.  A pretty reasonable sunset from the church graveyard overlooking the village.



Then dinner in the caravan, a bottle of wine and a couple of themed spotify playlists (girl's names and flowers) Better than it sounds!

Tuesday

We got away early and were home well before midday.

Hawkshead has lost its appeal a bit after this trip but we might give it another go around the same time next year.

Coming soon...

That's probably it for this year.

The caravan is winterized with the water drained down and bowls of salt strategically placed, but who knows...we might squeeze another trip in if the weather is ok in December.







17 Oct 2021

Kendal

15th to 17th October 2021

Third visting of the year to the Kendal CAMC site.


Friday

A traditional Friday start, last day of a week's holiday for D.  Our main holiday this year...almost back to back caravan trips!

A good start when we found that one of our favourite pitches was available, and a not so good start when we found out the showers in the nearest facilities block were not working.

We had lunch sitting outside the caravan enjoying the autumn sushine and thought about having a barbecue later, but the temperature tends to plummet at this time of year and we decided against it.  Instead we walked a mile to the nearest bus stop and got a bus into Kendal, which is just a bit too far to walk comfortably.

We headed straight for the Barrel House which is the tap room of Bowness Bay brewery.  We spent far too long there and ended up ordering a pizza from a nearby cafe.  The Barrel House doesn't do food but they let you eat things bought from the cafe. 




Next stop was the Handsome brewery, which was new to us, then the Fell bar.  There are plenty of choices in Kendal at the moment!

We got a taxi back to the site around 8.30 and spent the rest of the night in the caravan.

Saturday

Yesterday's glorious weather was replaced by dark clouds and drizzly rain but we set out for a walk near Newby Bridge, to Simpson Ground reservoir and White Stone.


Waterproof coats all the way but we didn't get really soaked until we climbed to the summit of White Stone.  Bog End Moss should have been a clue!  Waist high grass and bracken soaked our trousers and D's boots filled up with water!  New boot shopping to look forward to soon!













It's good to go walking in adverse conditions sometimes!

In the afternoon we walked to the nearby farm shop to get some supplies and then spent the night inside the caravan with wine, cheese and crisps!

Sunday

We awoke to the sound of rain on the caravan roof and had to pack everything away in the rain.  Water drained, containers of salt in the sink, the caravan is ready for winter just in case, but we are hoping to get away again this year.

Coming soon...

Nothing booked, but if the weather is ok we hope to get another couple of trips in this year.

13 Oct 2021

Pooley Bridge

11th to 13th October 2021

Our second visit of the year to Pooley Bridge and to Hillcroft Park.

What a difference a few month's makes.  Last time we came the site was packed and very noisy, but not this time.  Hardly anybody in the glamping pods, one tent and not many caravans in the non serviced section, which is where we where.

Monday

A Monday start, thanks to a week off work for D.


We like this site because there are mature hedges between each pitch, so we don't have to see anyone!  We didn't have any neighbours anyway.


After the over the top covid-19 restrictions of our last trip it was a welcome relief to find that almost all restrictions have been lifted here.  Just a polite reminder that you might like to wear a mask in reception and the facilities.  Hardly anyone did!

Pooley Bridge is just a short walk from the site and that is where we headed after setting everything up.  

First tea and cake in Granny Dowbekins Cafe



Then a drink in the Crown Inn.  No freehouses here...just Thwaites, Jennings or Robinsons.  The Crown is a Thwaites pub.  We liked their ordering app once we got the hang of it!

A view of the new Pooley Bridge bridge from the cafe...not a patch on the old one!

We walked back down in the evening for dinner in the Crown Inn, stopping on the way to get a few pics of Ullswater.



Mediterranean fish stew for D, Indian spiced chicken for J...and a bottle of wine!

We were back in the caravan before 9pm and spent the rest of the night listening to the radio.

Tuesday

The first walk we ever did in Cumbria was along the shores of Haweswater reservoir, and that is where we drove to after a not very early start.  According to a waitress in the cafe yesterday, earlier in the year the water level was the lowest it has been since 1995, but apparently it has bounced back a bit now.  Still, traces of the deliberately flooded village of Mardale were clearly visible. 





Two Wainwrights today...Selside and Branstree.  On paper, the most strenuous walk we have done for quite a while. 134 done, 80 to go!


We set off up the Old Corpse road, so called because it was the route taken by Mardale residents to bury their dead.  Quite steep to start with, we were glad to get to the "resting place" which is just a couple of derelict buildings. Not sure we could have carried a coffin!




Nice views of the reservoir but it was a grey day and not very good for pics.

The summit shelter on Selside...we couldn't get in, it was occupied!






Only one geocache today, but it had a cute trackable in so will be moving that along next time




The summit of Branstree


It did rain a bit!

In the evening we wandered down into the village to get supplies and had a quick drink in the Crown Inn, then spent the rest of the night in the caravan, retiring to bed by 10pm exhausted!

Wednesday

We left early and were home before midday, with a very warm welcome from our cat!

Coming soon...

A day at home, then we are away again at the weekend.  Not sure where yet.