Tag Archives: derwent water

Walk Derwent Water. 🥾⛵

A favourite walk of mine in the Lake District is the circuit around beautiful Derwent Water. Although 10 Mile long, this hike is mostly low level and if you keep the lake in sight, you can’t really get lost. 🙂 And there’s so much to see, it’s stunning in any weather. Here’s a Link to a map of the route.

I joined my sister, niece and nephew for this walk, we did the route anti clockwise, starting from the small free car parking area by Portinscale Suspension Bridge. We passed through the waterside village of Portinscale and found the path to the lake.

This Way Please. Portinscale Suspension Bridge.
The Marina.
We admired this rather nice house.
A bonnie bridge on the pathway to the Lingholm Kitchen & Walled Garden.

The Lingholm Estate on the shores of Derwent Water surrounds a grand Victorian House where the family of Beatrix Potter would spend their holidays. The garden where the Walled Garden is now inspired Beatrix’s ‘ The Tale Of Peter Rabbit ‘.

Alpaca at Lingholm.
Catbells in the distance.
Kayaks by the Lake.
Entrust Sculpture looking very weathered.

A Wooden Hand Sculpture ‘ Entrust ‘ can be found at Brandelhow Park. The Sculpture commemorate s the centenary of The National Trusts first land purchase in 2002. But recent storms seem to have moved the hands from their original position. I susoect they might be seen floating away in the future….

Lots of Gorse in bloom.
Teddy In The Window Shed.
Teddy. ❤️

Aw look it’s ‘ Teddy In The Window ‘ a popular landmark on the lakeside path. The unclaimed Teddy Bear gets sent postcards, letters and photos from all over the world. He raises money too for lots of good causes. We stopped to say Hi.

Cake by the Lake.
Chinese Bridge.
Looking back toward the bridge.

The Chinese Bridge that spans The River Derwent is a great spot for playing poohsticks. In fact there is even an extract from A A Milne’s Christopher Robin underfoot.

Lodore Falls Hotel ~ our pitstop for a dry off and Hot Chocolate.
A noisy flock of Barnacle Geese.
Wild Garlic, the only one in flower.
Centenary Stones at Calfclose Bay.
Millennium Seat.

The Centenary Stones are another National Trust Sculpture. These are found at Calfclose Bay. Nearby is a bench with a lovely view over the Lake, a bit too wet for us to sit on though.

Boardwalk through boggy woodland.
A tumbled tree.
Canada Geese.
Hollow tree base.
Keswick Launch.

At Keswick we made a detour into Hope Park to see the bronze statue of Max The Miracle Dog, who had sadly passed away the day before aged 14 and a half. Max was a very special Springer Spaniel therapy dog who raised alot of money for various charities and brought alot of happiness to alot of People. The orange coloured flowers are a tribute to the orange collar he always wore. 🧡🧡

A detour into Hope Park.
To see Max’s Statue. 🧡
Heading back to Portinscale Suspension Bridge.
Herdwick Sheep.

It had been a soggy but very enjoyable walk. Well worth doing. Thanks for joining me.🥾


Exploring Cumbria & The Lake District.

Hi there, I have been stopping at the caravan with friends and we were using it as a base to visit some places in Cumbria and the Lakes! I thought I would update this blog everyday diary style and post at the end of our stay. 🥰

Penrith Castle ~ photo credit Arwen Ball.

Day One. We arrived here last night , so today we nipped to nearby Penrith for supplies, had lunch, did some shopping, went for a few drinks and explored the red ruins of Penrith Castle. The girls had their nails done at a great little nail bar in town and we bought some pretty bits and bobs from a lovely clothes/gift shop called Adlib.

Day Two. An epic start to the day with an informative & interesting Whiskey/Vodka/Gin tasting tour, booked in at The Lakes Distillery near Keswick. Well Somebody had to take the morning slot. 😀

The Lakes Distillery.

After the tour we headed to The Lake District Wildlife Park nearby. Lots of lovely animals & birdlife to learn about and admire, including Otter, Red Panda, Scottish Wildcat, Flamingo and Zebra. 🦓

Lake District Wildlife Park ~ photo credit ~ Arwen Ball.
Rowing Boat on Derwent Water ~ photo credit Tammy Cardoso.

An impromptu row on Derwent Water rounded up Sundays adventures. 🚣‍♀️ Look out for the rowing boats for hire next to the Keswick Launch & Jetty.

Day Three. A scorcher of a day! We are happily having untypically warm Bank Holiday sunshine. Our first destination was gorgeous Grasmere, the home of poet William Wordsworth and yummy traditional Gingerbread.

Inside Sarah Nelson’s Grasmere Gingerbread Shop.

Grasmere Gingerbread Shop is definitely a must when you visit the village. Although the store is tiny it brims with character and the scrumptious aroma of baking gingerbread is impossible to resist. Yet more sweet treats were purchased at the Grasmere Chocolate Cottage. A short walk was needed to burn off those soon to be consumed calories.

Colourful boats at Faeryland Tea Garden.

After walking to Grasmere lake we called in at Faeryland Tea Garden which has an enviable position overlooking the water, and pretty pastille coloured rowing boats are available for hire. 🧚‍♀️

Kittchen ‘ Pussy & Pints ‘.

Although I have been to a Cat Cafe before, none of us have ever visited a Cat Bar….until now. Kittchen in Hawkshead is home to seven adorable rescue cats and serves yummy food and alcoholic beverages. Because the weather was so hot most of the furry felines were asleep, but the sunshine did mean we had the cats all to ourselves. A purrfect end to the day. 🐱

Llama Trek to Brougham Castle. Photo Courtesy of Arwen Ball.

Day Four. Another hot day. Our anticipated llama trek was put back to late afternoon, so it wouldn’t be too hot for the above cute camelids, Warrior and Jester. We booked an hour mini trek with Lakeland Llama Treks based in Brougham and Melmerby. It was great fun to groom, learn about and walk with both boys to Brougham Castle ,with our lovely guide Caroline. 🦙

Visiting family.

Day Five. The girls went on a little roadtrip to find a beach, spending a couple of hours relaxing on the sands in Maryport. Meanwhile I met up with family at my Mum’s in Askham and we enjoyed a saunter up the fell.

Face Mask Thursday ~ photo credit Tammy Cardoso.

Day Six. Alot cooler today so we chilled at the caravan, watching films etc. It was Arwen and Tammy’s last full day with me at the van.

Day Seven. After a tasty lunch at The Old Village Bakery in Melmerby, the girls have made it home. I am presently waiting for my other half to arrive. It’s been great spending time here with friends, a treat and a bit of normality all at the same time. 😊

Thanks for dropping by.

Sunday Sevens 31st March.

It’s definitely time for a Sunday Sevens, a random collection of seven photos from the past seven days.

Last weekend Wil and I found ourselves in Manchester and of course immediately gravitated to our favourite Manchester bar The Gas Lamp near Spinning fields. This subterranean drinking den is not posh at all , its interior design can only be described as ’tiled toilet’ , but our friends who were in town shopping had the same idea as us, so we met them for a drink or two.

The real reason Wil and I were in Manchester, was to see the singer Amy McDonald at the Apollo. Here’s a short video! Soz my filming is pretty wonky.

Also last weekend my friend Fi talked another friend and I into going with her to a Rock gothic stage show called Circus of Horror’s which was playing in Oswaldtwistle. This near Victorian freak show combines knife throwing, contortionism, scary clowns, strong men, burlesque dancers and near naked dwarves ( don’t ask) with heavy metal music… and is set in a lunatic asylum!

Who isn’t a cast member here. Haha.

This past few days I’ve noticed quite a few wildflowers springing up in my neck of the woods. Below are a few taken with my phone camera. What is your favourite Spring wildflower? I have a soft spot for celandines of course, and I love violets.

Flower Power.

Yesterday Hugo had lots of fun with his new floating dog toy when we visited Derwentwater, on the way up to my Mums. We walked from Keswick as far as Ashness Bridge. Derwentwater is a great lake to wander along the shores of. There are a few sculptures and other landmarks to discover.

Derwent Water.

Centenary Stone, Calfclose Bay.

The little National Trust Bothy above Ashness Bridge was open, had a cosy fire lit and free tea, coffee and hot chocolate. A lovely surprise! The NT volunteer had a handsome Golden Doodle called Alfie, who was totally adorable.

We walked a good eight miles yesterday and I am on track to become a Proclaimer next week. I should soon reach 500 miles in the #walk1000miles challenge. 🙂

Hope you are all having a Happy Mother’s Day Weekend. I have especially enjoyed spending time with my fur babies and helping out today with my God daughters 9th Birthday Party. X

Thanks to Natalie at Threads & Bobbins for arranging Sunday Sevens.

A Pet-friendly Break in Keswick.

When planning a break with your four-legged friend , it is always handy to know that one particular Lake District resort has been voted ‘Uk’s Most Dog Friendly Town’ by the Kennel Club for four years on the trot. Lovely Keswick has it all. Stunning countryside with miles and miles of walks, a beautiful lake ( Derwentwater), cosy pubs and cafes, eclectic  shops , several dog-friendly parks and a  variety of accommodation  and visitor attractions that welcome waggy tails.  It seemed the ‘Pawfect’ place for a January Break with our labrador Hugo. 🙂 Here’s what we got up to….

Where we stopped.   We booked  Butterfly Cottage through Sally’s Cottages  who are based in Keswick. They have over 230 pet friendly holiday cottages in The Lake District and Cumbria. Our bijou retreat was so cosy with its Wood Burning Stove ( a must for a Winter Break), open plan downstairs space, fully equipped kitchen and beautiful bedroom with comfy King Size Bed. The location was really handy for everything in town and it was super useful to have an enclosed back yard with a muddy boots and paws wash.

Where we walked.  Every morning before breakfast we headed to Crow Park on the banks of Derwent Water. This is one of three Dog Friendly Parks in Keswick that we noticed. The others are Hope park and Fitz Park.  Each morning depending on the weather, the scenery changed. Sometimes the mountains were bathed in gold, sometimes they were an angry slate blue. It was peaceful there and Hugo had a great run around.

keswick-jan-158 keswick-jan-088




There is a ten mile circular walk around Derwent Water itself which we hope to try on our next visit. We did however revisit a Railway walk which we enjoyed  whilst camping in Keswick a couple of years ago.  The Keswick to Threlkeld Railway Path is now partially destroyed due to last Winter’s storms but what remains, still makes for a pleasant stroll or bike ride. The walk starts from the Swimming Baths near Fitz Park.





We also walked up to  Castlerigg Stone Circle situated just outside of Keswick off Castle lane. With the mountains of Helvellyn and High Street as a backdrop, the stone circle is among the earliest in Britain, dating back to 3000 BC.  On a clearer day the views are stunning.


Castlerigg Stone Circle.

Places to  Eat & Drink.   Keswick is great for dog friendly pubs and cafes.  In fact  all the pubs in Keswick welcome dogs except for the Wetherspoons.  Of course we made it our mission to try out as many as we could !  My favourites were The George Hotel with it’s cosy seating area by the fire, The Wainwright Pub, The Packhorse  Inn,  and of course The Dog and Gun famed for it’s ‘Homemade Goulash’ and doggy treat menu. 🙂

I don’t know about you but for breakfast on holidays I love pancakes. 🙂  Keswick has that sorted . We loved  Merienda  on the main street. It’s a fab Cafe Restaurant open for Breakfast, Brunch, Lunch and Dinner.  With an 8am opening time Mon-Sats and 9am on Sunday it is the perfect place to refuel before yomping up those hills. Another great venue for early starters is Cafe Bar 26 on Lake Road which does amazing Full Spanish Breakfasts. And both do make delicious  pancakes. 🙂


Bar 26.

Many of the pubs serve great food ( try the Royal Oak for their amazing Cheese Boards & Platters) and there are plenty of cafes and restaurants in Keswick that welcome dogs. As well as Bar 26 and Merienda look out for The Square Orange Bar/Cafe, Java Chocolate & Coffee Shop, Lakes Bistro & Bar, The Filling Station, Little Chamonix, Laura in The lakes, Kat’s Kitchen ( Veggie ) and Mrs F’s Fine Food emporium, to name but a few.

Shopping.  Plenty of shops in the town don’t mind you being accompanied by your four legged friend. I find the best thing to do is always ask first. Lots of the Outdoorsy shops are dog friendly and so are many others. Hugo visited lovely gift emporiums Cherrydidi  and Love The lakes  on St John’s Street, for holiday souvenirs. He also bobbed into Keswick’s well loved Pet Store Podgy Paws which is a great place to visit for advice on local walks and dog friendly places, activities and attractions.

My picture of Cherrydidi Shop Dog Zak, taken last Summer. He has his own range of Zak merchandise and is a complete babe. 🙂

Visitor Attractions.  Here is a quick list of pet friendly things to do and places to visit in Keswick and the surrounding area. 🙂

Cumberland Pencil Museum. Carding Mill Lane. Journey through the history of pencils and pencil making. Home to the biggest colouring pencil in the world! pencilmuseum.co.uk

Keswick Launch Company. Derwentwater. See the gorgeous scenery of Derwentwater on a lake cruise. keswicklaunch.co.uk

A Puzzling Place. 9 Museum Square. An exhibition of optical illusions and trickery. puzzlingplace.co.uk

Keswick Climbing Wall. Goosewell Farm. Indoor and Outdoor Adventure Centre. keswickclimbingwall.co.uk

Castlerigg Stone Circle. Near Goosewell Farm.

Whinlatter Forest Park. England’s only true Mountain Forest with walks, trails and adventure play. forestry.gov.uk

Mirehouse & Gardens. Stately Home and gardens on the shores of Bassenthwaite Lake. Dogs welcome in the gardens and grounds. mirehouse.co.uk

The Lingholm Kitchen and Walled Garden. Portinscale.  Beatrix Potter often holidayed here and the garden was the inspiration for Mr McGregor’s garden in The Tale Of Peter Rabbit. Reachable via a lake jetty or car. thelingholmestate.co.uk


Hugo by Derwentwater.

I shall certainly take a look at the list on our next visit to Keswick. Hugo cannot wait to go again…and nor can we. 🙂

Can you recommend any dog friendly destinations?




Sunday Sevens ~ May 15th.

My Sunday Sevens for last week are a little bit of a cheat because the photo’s are all actually from the weekend. Hey Ho!  The weekend was a lot more fun than the week. 🙂

Saturday saw us heading to Keswick in the Lake District for a bit of outdoorsy shopping ,lunch and of course some splashing about in the lake.

derwent water 002
Derwent Water.

1) Here’s Hugo playing in the Lake with a couple of other Labradors. According to Wikipedia Star Wars Episode V11: The Force Awakens  filmed on location here for the scene ” Approach to Maz Kantana’s Castle, Takodana. One for Star Wars Fans!

derwent water 006

2)  It was quite chilly in the morning, despite the bright sunshine. Keswick and the Lake were really busy though!  Another fact for you, Derwent Water is home to an endangered freshwater whitefish called the Vendace. I don’t think Hugo ate any !

derwent water 007
Veggie Chilli Burrito 🙂

3)  Speaking of lunch :),  we had ours at a cute little cafe in Keswick called Little Chamonix.  If you ever visit the town , I highly recommend this charming and bright eatery on Lake Road. My Burrito was sooo good!

4)  In the afternoon we drove round the lake to the village of Portinscale.  After reading  Christine’s fab post  about a lakeside,woodland walk she did to find this interesting Sculpture, I was inspired to search it out too. The giant pair of hands carved in wood can be found on the West Shore of Derwent Water. The sculpture is entitled Entrust and was commissioned by the National Trust. A handy find ;).

Cinnamon and Hugo.

5)  On Sunday we met up with a friend and her Labrador for a walk. How cute do these two look together. 🙂


6 & 7)  And we visited other friends who have the cutest Summer House in their garden. It made me wish that our shed could be converted. I don’t think Wil would be too impressed though!

Thanks for dropping by. Sunday Sevens was devised by Natalie at Threads and Bobbins.





Camping Trip ~ Keswick.

One of my fave places to go camping has got to be Keswick in the Lake District. This popular lakeside market town brimming with outdoorsy shops, dog friendly pubs and heavenly tea rooms is an excellent base for exploring our most iconic National Park.

Lakes2 003

Last week we stayed at Keswick Camping & Caravanning Club Campsite. . Its more expensive than the campsites we normally choose but the closeness to town ( a few minutes stroll) and the stunning location on the banks of Derwent Water made up for that. Its an eight mile walk around the lake and there are also cruises from Keswick Launch. From the campsite we had gorgeous views of the lake and the mountains beyond.

Greylag geese on the lake.
Greylag geese on the lake.

We were really lucky to have pretty good weather when we camped….though a few thunderstorms during the night made it interesting! Happily our labrador Hugo didn’t seem to be fazed by the crashes and bangs. 🙂 Here are a few things we got up to in our time in the Lake District.

lakes1 022

We walked to  the village of Threlkeld and back along an old railway line. If you’re anything like me and hyperventilate at the mere thought of climbing a mountain, then this walk/cycle route maybe perfect for you . My seven year old nephew can pedal this three mile there and three mile back part of the coast to coast with ease. And instead of Derwent Water it was nice to discover the River Greta and its surrounding countryside instead. Check out Miles without stiles for more info.

lakes1 042
Surprise Yarn bombing in Threlkeld.

We took Hugo to a Pencil Museum!  Ok dogs would probably prefer to be splashing in a lake but it’s nice that this attraction lets you bring along a four legged friend on a drizzly Saturday morning. The Cumberland Pencil Museum archives and celebrates how the Borrowdale Valleys natural graphite supplies were turned into pencil lead. The museum is home to the world’s first pencil and the world’s longest colour pencil.  Derwent pencils were used in the original ‘The Snowman’ animation and did you know the museum featured in the dark Brit comedy film ‘Sightseers’. Its a great place to take the kids and big kids to indulge in a bit of colouring. 🙂

Lakes2 050

Lakes2 054

We ate delicious local food. 🙂 There are plenty of places to eat in Keswick and most use produce sourced locally. We were spoilt for choice….

lakes1 053

Tasty goulash is the signature dish in the cozy  Dog and Gun on Lake Road.

lakes1 050

Yummy carrot cake ( on such an adorable plate! ) sat outside the charming Little Chamonix Cafe.

Lakes2 045


Man vs Food style pancake stack at the The Filling Station Cafe diner on Crossthwaite Rd. Yummy indeed!

Lakes2 024

We bought a Dog Friendly Pub Walks book from a great pet shop in Keswick called Podgy Paws and decided to try a walk from the ‘Beehive Pub’ at Eamont , on the way to visiting my Mums near Penrith. There are 15 no stile walks in the book and lots of amusing and cute piccies of happy hounds. 🙂

Splashing around in Ullswater.
Splashing around in Ullswater.

We also went to Pooley Bridge near Ullswater and had lots of fun paddling and watching the doog jump off the pier. 🙂

Lakes2 061

And back to ‘Derwent Water’ which you can, as I mentioned before, walk all the way round. We only made it as far as Friars Crag which has beautiful views of the islands in the lake.

Lakes2 072

And I had to do a bit of shopping of course. The Orchid House on Lake rd in Keswick is one of those shops that is brimming full of lovely stuff. I wanted to buy everything…but I will show you what I did buy in a future post. 🙂

More from the Lakes again soon as I shall be swapping Camping for Glamping near Coniston at the end of the month. Excited!!

Jake Loves the Lakes.

‘The Lake District’ is a National Park in Cumbria on the western side of North England. It is made up of over 80 mountain lakes, glacial tarns and man made reservoirs. The Lake District is home to England’s highest mountain ‘Scafell Pike’ and England’s deepest lake, ‘Wast Water’ and is classed as an AONB ,( Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty). Over the years we have visited several times with our dog Jake. Jake has become a bit of a ‘Wainwright Bagger’ of lakes and tarns, insisting on paddling/swimming in as many as he can. So who better to show you the beauty of ‘The Lake District’ than him. 🙂

There are lots of dog friendly camp sites in the Lakes. :)
There are lots of dog friendly camp sites in the Lakes. 🙂

Ullswater lies in the North East of the Lake District and is nine miles long. It is sometimes compared to the lakes of Switzerland.
Ullswater lies in the North East of the Lake District and is nine miles long. It is sometimes compared to the lakes of Switzerland.

Thirlmere is a reservoir serving the city of Manchester. Helvellyn peak looks over the west side of the lake.
Thirlmere is a reservoir serving the city of Manchester. Helvellyn peak looks overthe west side of the lake.

Windermere is the largest lake at 11 miles long.There are several islands in the lake. Jake got chased by some grumpy swans!
Windermere is the largest lake at 11 miles long.There are several islands in the lake. Jake got chased by some grumpy swans!

Wast Water is beautiful and remote.Here is Jake on the banks with his finds, a stick and an oxygen mask!
Wast Water is beautiful and remote.Here is Jake on the bank with his finds, a stick and an oxygen mask!

Ennerdale Water shimmering in the early morning sunshine.
Ennerdale Water shimmering in the early morning sunshine.

Beacon Tarn near Coniston is not accessable by road. We loved this little tarn tucked away in the fells.
Beacon Tarn near Coniston is not accessable by road. We loved this little tarn tucked away in the fells.
Coniston Water is the straightest  of the lakes, which is what attracted Donald Campbell to attempt the world water speed record in his boat, the bluebird. Coniston was also the inspiration for "Swallows and Amazons".
Coniston Water is the straightest of the lakes, which is what attracted Donald Campbell to attempt the world water speed record in his boat, the bluebird. Coniston was also the inspiration for Arthur Ransoms, “Swallows and Amazons”.

Tarn Hows is actually a man made lake once owned by Beatrix Potter. There is a pretty  path all the way round which is perfect for prams and pushchairs.:)
Tarn Hows is actually a man made lake once owned by Beatrix Potter. There is a pretty path all the way round which is perfect for prams and pushchairs.:)

Brothers Water is a small lake in the eastern region of the Lakes. It is home to a rare species of fish called , the schelly. I hope Jake didn't swallow any!
Brothers Water is a small lake in the eastern region of the Lakes. It is home to a rare species of fish called , the schelly. I hope Jake didn’t swallow any!

Jake surveys his kingdom  from 'Barrow' where you can see two lakes, Bassenthwaite and Derwent Water.
Jake surveys his kingdom from ‘Barrow’ where you can see two lakes, Bassenthwaite and Derwent Water.

Derwent Water is one of the most scenic of the Lakes ( Gorgeous !).
Derwent Water is one of the most scenic of the Lakes ( Gorgeous !).

Of course there are still several lakes and tarns Jake hasn’t crossed off his list yet. Hopefully he may get the chance to do a few more this year. 🙂

Here are a few dog friendly camp sites we have stopped at in the Lakes.

Lanefoot Farm Camp site, Thornthwaite.
Coniston Old Hall camp site, Coniston
Thirlspot Farm, ThirlmereThirlspot Farm
Sykeside camp site, Brotherswaterhttp://www.sykeside.co.uk