Tag Archives: haweswater

A Nights stay at the Haweswater Hotel.

An early birthday treat from my other half was a night away in the secluded Haweswater Hotel, located on the banks of one of The Lake Districts lesser known lakes. We had stayed here previously a couple of years earlier and since then a few more rooms have been refurbished in a 1930s art deco style, in keeping with the hotels history having being built by The Manchester Water Corporation in 1937. Back then the Haweswater Reservoir had been created by flooding the Mardale Valley, it’s villages and farms forever condemned to a watery grave. A picture of the former Dun Bull Inn has pride of place above the fire place in the reception/entrance hall.

It was about 3pm when we rocked up to our home for the night, enough time to take Hugo for a short walk along the lake side road. It felt bitterly cold, there was a smattering of snow on the fells. We couldn’t wait to get toasty inside.

Bad news greeted us. The heating wasn’t working! Thank goodness all the fires were lit downstairs and the hotel had raided the local B &Q in Penrith for plug in heaters for the bedrooms. We would have to make the best of it…

Fortunately our room ( Wainwright) seemed to warm up ok with the plug in heater provided. And there was still hot water. Phew! Our room was actually a lake view suite with a cosy sitting area. Quite bijou but totally fine for us and the dog. I certainly loved the decor. 🙂

The thought of a roaring fire enticed us back downstairs. The guest lounge with its huge sofas and twinkly lights was certainly very inviting.

Dogs are allowed to accompany guests into the lounge and bar but not the formal dining room, so we took our evening meal in the bar and enjoyed breakfast there the following morning. The food and service was excellent. My sticky toffee pudding was to die for. 🙂 Hugo was given some treats by the friendly staff.

The former Dun Bull Inn, the only Inn in the Mardale Valley before it was flooded.

My only disappointment was not catching a glimpse of the native red squirrels that visit the garden and bird feeders outside. Squirrel food can be obtained at the bar and on our previous visit we were lucky enough to see one of the little fellas.


Despite the heating problems we enjoyed a lovely stay at The Haweswater Hotel. The staff are so friendly and accommodating. I would definitely visit again in the future.

Badgers at RSPB Haweswater. 🦡

Have you ever seen a badger? I must admit these nocturnal mammals have always been something of a mystery to me. Stocky with stripey faces and claws made for digging, the badger is apparently as common as the fox, but much more elusive. Some people ( myself included) have only ever spied the bodies of those poor unfortunates, squashed at the side of the road. 😦 So when I heard about the new Badger Hide at Naddle Farm near Haweswater in Cumbria, I was eager to book myself a place. Of course it helped that my Mum lives only 15 minutes away from the new RSPB base and I could coincide the experience with a family visit.

The hide at Naddle Farm can be hired out for private viewings but I chose to book a Monday night place for myself and my brother. A Monday night slot lasts 1.5 hours and on our visit four other people joined us plus two RSPB guides. The price is £15 for adults ( £12 if your a RSPB member) and children are £10.

Badger viewing begins at dusk, so we arrived at the farm just before 9pm. We were then introduced to our guides and shown into the hide, which is at the back of a farm building looking onto a small fenced croft.

For the first 45 minutes no badgers appeared , so it was the brown rats that entertained us. Yikes! You can see one in the foreground of the above photo. They were quite cheeky and only made themselves scarce when the first badger showed up.

The RSPB staff had hidden food under rocks in the croft. But don’t worry, although the thought of some tasty morsels does entice wildlife, a badgers diet consists mostly of worms. A typical nights feed for one badger is a few hundred wiggly worms, which they dig from the ground and suck up like spaghetti. Yum!

Our first visitor was a badger that the guides had got to know from her previous visits. She had been named ‘ Porridge’ by some students. We had been told not to worry if Porridge showed up with bite marks on her rump. Biting each others bums is apparently quite normal in the badger world , as a way of establishing heirachy. Luckily Porridges bite wounds were almost healed and she looked in good health.

Porridge stayed around for a good 15 minutes, flipping rocks and digging in the grass. It was wonderful just to be able to sit in comfort, and watch badgers do what badgers do, in their own natural environment.

Another ten minutes after Porridge had left ( and the rats had reemerged, only to quickly hide again) another badger came a calling. This one was a new visitor. Neither of the guides had seen this particular mammal before, so they were quite excited. He/she emerged from the woodland on the hillside and spent a good while sniffling around. It is possible there are as many as 40 setts in the Haweswater area, so who knows how many badgers live here.

Our time watching Britain’s largest predatory mammal was all to soon over, but we all agreed it had been well worth it.

For information on how to book the hide look here. 🦡

Have you ever seen a badger?

Heather and Haweswater.

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Haweswater is a reservoir in the valley of Mardale in the North East of the Lake District. In the 1930’s this four mile stretch of water was created from the original smaller lake and the flooding of the picturesque Mardale Valley. Two villages, various farms and ‘ The Dun Bull Inn’ were destroyed, so that Manchester and other urban areas could benefit from a decent water supply. The reservoir still provides a good percentage of the North West’s water.

At the moment Haweswater’s water levels are much lower than usual, so it is possible to see the remains of the sunken village of Mardale Green, at the top end of the lake. However after parking at the Haweswater Hotel ( the only residence on the lakeside) and enjoying a spot of lunch, time restricted our planned walk to the ruins. Instead we ambled a couple of miles along the road to a heather strewn viewing point, the purple blooms are just coming into flower, and make for a beautiful backdrop. 😊

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Possibly a Silver Y Moth, but please let me know if I am wrong…

The Haweswater Hotel was built in 1937 by the Manchester Corporation, after the flooding of the valley. Inside it is decorated in an impressive Art Deco style, harking back to it’s 1930’s beginnings. We actually stopped there in 2016 for a couple of nights…and it was almost empty of guests. Happily this Summer’s beautiful weather and the ‘reappearance of the village in the reservoir’ have peeked tourists curiosity, concerning this lesser known (though still idyllic) area of The Lake District….

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Have you seen any heather blooming yet? Its still quite early, so it was lovely to see this pretty plant already flowering on the banks of the lake.

Have you ever been to Haweswater?

Haweswater and Small water Tarn.

As we were staying at the Haweswater Hotel recently, we decided to spend a day exploring the surrounding countryside. There are various walks and footpaths in the area including one round Haweswater Reservoir ( some sections are currently closed after the bad weather earlier in the year) and others that go up into the hills. After looking at a map we decided to head up to a small tarn called appropriately enough Small Water. 🙂 There is a little car park at the far end of Haweswater where we parked. First things first though, Hugo had to take a dip in the lake.

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Haweswater.

Haweswater is actually a reservoir and was built in the thirties. Controversially the valley, existing lake and the village of Mardale Green were flooded to create it. Haweswater supplies water to the city of Manchester, to this day. It is situated in the North East of the Lake District.

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We followed the Nan Bield Pass sign from the car park.
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The sheep here are like mountain goats. 🙂
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Cotton grass waving gently in the breeze.
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Meandering our way along the rocky path.
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I think this little fella is a Great grey shrike. 🙂
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Amazing views.

About an hours walk up the path and Small Water Tarn emerges from over a rocky crag. What a rewarding scene! We didn’t see a single person and had it all to ourselves. 🙂

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Small water Tarn.
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Hugo after a paddle. Think he’s eyeing up our sandwiches. 😉

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The path continues up onto ‘High Street’, yes that is the name of a mountain fell. 🙂 Another tarn called Blea Water is somewhere over those crags too. But we decided to head back toward Haweswater and follow some of the path round the lake.

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Heading back towards Haweswater.
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Meadow pippit.
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Any ideas what these flowers are. Purple violet like, the leaves resemble green stars.

From the car park we followed the signpost saying Eagle Viewing Point. Here’s a sad story actually. Until very recently ( only a few months ago in fact) Haweswater and Riggindale , was the home to England’s only Golden Eagle. Alone here since 2004, he had been displaying every Spring in order to attract a mate. Not this Spring though. Maybe he has passed away. Or maybe he has finally given up and flown North. What I can’t understand though, is why the RSPB never tried introducing another female eagle into the area. It’s a shame….

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A disused Bothy. It was locked up and looked like it wasn’t really usable though.
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We enjoyed some fresh clear water from this little brook.
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Pretty vivid blue wild flowers.
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The perfect place for a swim. 🙂
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Looking over the lake.
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Canada Geese family.

Although the eagle is no longer in residence here there are chances to see plenty of wildlife including Peregrines, Ring Ouzels, Red Deer, Goosander, Flycatchers and Dippers.And the countryside, I’m sure you will agree is just stunning. 🙂

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Hugo enjoying the views.
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Red Squirrel enjoying lunch at the Haweswater Hotel.

Have you ever walked to a secluded tarn? Have you ever been to Haweswater?

Sunday Sevens ~ 29th May.

Having a week off always makes joining in with Sunday Sevens a bit more interesting, don’t you think. So whilst the Other Half has gone car shopping ( our peugeot is now on its last legs/wheels) I’ll recap my week in photos.

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  1. Last weekend we headed to the Yorkshire Dales for a few days camping. Howgill Lodge Campsite near Bolton Abbey is a site we have returned to a few times. You can see why. Look at our view over the Wharfedale Valley!  I like Howgill a lot as the pitches are all very spacious, each with it’s own picnic bench. The showers are powerful and hot and the site shop is small but provides all camping essentials. Chickens and ducks and wild rabbits roam around freely . Don’t be alarmed if they visit your tent! Owls hoot all night, the Dawn Chorus starts at 4am and includes Cuckoos and Curlews. Very vocal but wonderful too. 🙂

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2.A walk along the river to the village of Burnsall , and we spied this Tuk Tuk. Not a sight that you would usually see in the Yorkshire Dales! It was actually transporting a Bride and her Groom to the old bridge for a Photo Opportunity. Apparently lovetuktuks.co.uk are a Wharfedale based company that hire out this lovely little Italian Calessino for Weddings, Proms and other Excursions. 🙂

3. Fountain Abbey is about half an hours drive away from Howgill, so we decided to make the most of our National Trust Membership and spent most of Monday exploring the grounds, which included a Deer Park. The Water Gardens are full of sculptures, Lakes and Follies , so it’s well worth a trip out.

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4. We spent a couple of days at home recharging our batteries  before heading away again, this time to the Lakes for a  couple of nights . The recharging had to include trying out this delicious picnic lunch at the The Atrium at Clitheroe Castle, which tasted as scrumptious as it looks. There’s a new chef at the Atrium and an exciting fresh menu, so go take a look.

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5. Our little mini break in the Lakes was spent at the peaceful and secluded Haweswater Hotel that overlooks the Haweswater Reservoir. This art deco style hotel was built in the thirties by the Manchester Corporation who were responsible for flooding the valley to create the reservoir. We really enjoyed our stay,although the building is a work in progress.Some of the rooms have been recently refurbished, others need a little tlc. But we were made very welcome, especially Hugo. 🙂

6. Residing in such beautiful countryside had to mean a spot of hiking. The hotel provides packed lunches so we made the most of this and took ours up into the hills, where we discovered a hidden tarn. The tarn is called Small water and is actually bigger than we expected. I was mighty glad to find it! Hiking is not my forte. But the countryside is so ruggedly beautiful , it’s well worth doing!

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7. One last picture. This was taken at another National Trust property called Allan Bank at Grasmere, which I enjoyed so much, I will blog about it separately  soon. The colourful sheep is part of the Go Herdwick Art Trail and is one of over 50 hand painted ewes , that can be spotted all over the Lake District until september.

Sunday Sevens was devised by Natalie at Threads and Bobbins.

Hope you are enjoying your Bank Holiday!!

Haweswater Gems.

Have you ever happened upon a hidden gem? At the weekend we stumbled across one. The remote and romantic looking  Haweswater Hotel  commands views over one of the lesser known lakes in The Lake District. It’s a beautiful country house hotel that looks down on Haweswater Reservoir. Haweswater began it’s life as a natural lake until in the 1930’s the surrounding valley (  and villages of Measand and Mardale Green) were flooded to create the larger reservoir it is today. Manchester Corporation built the lakeside road and the hotel replaced the flooded ‘Dun Bull Inn’. Haweswater supplies much of the North West’s H20. Of course it was raining buckets as we arrived! haweswater and 217haweswater and 222haweswater and 223haweswater and 221

Easter Sunday happened to be a cold, rainy and blustery day so it was with relief that we headed indoors into the bar/restaurant area , which has a huge double slate fireplace and is decorated in a fabulous art deco style. I loved all the retro prints adorning the walls and the little decorative touches such as the vintage luggage and fresh flowers. 🙂 The hotel apparently has many original art deco features from when it was built in the Thirties and the bar has recently been sympathetically refurbished to embrace its history. I am wondering whether it may have opened in 1937 perhaps?!

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Even though we hadn’t made a booking and just arrived hoping to warm up and shelter from the weather, we couldn’t have been made more welcome by the lovely bar staff.’ The Haweswater’ advertises itself as a haven for walkers  which is perfect as the area is a hiker’s and nature lover’s paradise. It’s also pet friendly and you can even holiday here with your dog. 🙂 I’m very tempted!

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We enjoyed some hearty pub grub for our lunch. Wil had the Venison stew and I settled for the haddock and chips which were both very good. And I definitely recommend the Courgette and lime cake that we shared for dessert. Very zesty and sublime. 🙂

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I must admit I was easily distracted whilst eating mine as we had a wonderful view of the lake. And on the sun terrace outside there was many a charming visitor. I spied Great Tits, Bluetits,Chaffinches,Nuthatches and to my delight a couple of the area’s native red squirrels. It looks as though the terrace and gardens attract plentiful wildlife.

 

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Just a couple more miles down the remote country road past the hotel is the southern tip of the lake. There is a little car park there and signage for various walking routes. With Hugo being on light exercise only at present we couldn’t really take him very far though.The Eagle Viewpoint sign certainly looks very intriguing! In fact the Haweswater area is home to England’s only Golden Eagle. The male eagle chose this scenic valley as his home many years ago and the RSPB man the viewing area. We will return!

 

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After taking a couple of photo’s of the lake we decided to head back along the country roads and  past our elegant yet friendly lunch host toward the village of Shap. On the way I made Wil stop off at Shap Abbey as it is somewhere we have seen signs for, but never visited. My pictures look deceptively calm as the ancient ruins were actually engulfed in blowy winds ,rain and sleet. Another gem we will have to revisit in nicer weather. 🙂

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What hidden gems have you discovered on your travels?

 

Photo an Hour ~ March 2016.

Janey’s  and  Louisa’s  #photoanhour challenge on Instagram is a photo challenge I do  enjoy getting involved in every now and again. It really is quite difficult snapping something you’re doing or seeing on the hour, every hour, for a whole day. The good thing about participating along with others on Instagram though, is you can see what everyone else is getting up to as well. And for someone nosy like me, that is great fun.:) It was Janey’s turn to choose the day and she picked Easter Sunday. Be prepared for the random and the mundane…….

8am. A black coffee to start the day.

9am. Car journey to visit family in the Lakes. I routed out a couple of cds for the trip.

10am. It’s a bit of a grey day travelling up the M6. But we do keep seeing old Vintage Buses for some reason.Aaaah Bisto Bus ,where are you heading?

11am. Landed at Mums and admired her potted geraniums in the window.

Noon. Headed out to find somewhere for lunch. We found a lovely ( and pet friendly) lakeside hotel looking over Haweswater.Built in the 1930s The Haweswater Hotel has a real art deco feel about it.Enjoyed a brew first to warm up then some grub.

1pm. Sharing some cake, but my picture is of Hugo watching us share some cake.We are meanies I know!

2pm. We have driven down to the end of the lake You can just make out snow on the fells there. As Hugo is still on light exercise we couldn’t take him on much of a walk,poor pup. 😦

3pm. Not far from Haweswater are the remains of Shap Abbey which we had a quick look round. It actually started hailing and the temperature was a pretty bracing 2 degrees. So didn’t linger long! I am going to write a more detailed post about the area soon.

4pm. On the way home now and we pass an Iconic M6 landmark.It’s the Forton Services near Lancaster! I must stop someday.

5pm.And home sweet home! And another brew! I think I had quite a few today.

6pm. We put Hugo’s cone back on. He has been wearing it for a week but being Easter Sunday, I thought it would be good for him to have a couple of hours off. Poor guy was neutered and after his stitches were taken out, the wound opened up again. More stitches are in there now. 😦 We have been trying to keep him calm but he is too bouncy for his own good. I know it’s probably the right thing to do, but I am quite regretting getting him done.

7pm. Cake! Sorry no Easter egg piccies. This is yummy Yorkshire Parkin given to me by this month’s Foodie Pen pal. 🙂

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8pm. And we will end with a piccie of ‘The Big Bang Theory’ which is always on in the background. 🙂

Thanks for dropping by. X