Ullswater from Gowbarrow Fell

Gowbarrow Fell

Eastern Lake District

Route: Gowbarrow Fell and Aira Force

Area: Eastern Lake District

Date of walk: 28th May 2015

Walkers: Andrew

Distance: 5.2 miles

Weather: Mostly cloudy with patches of sun, improving

I was inspired by yesterday’s walk up Place Fell to revisit Ullswater, and Gowbarrow Fell seemed like a good choice – it had been raining overnight and I could include Aira Force in the round as the waterfalls should be on good form

I parked in the higher of the National Trust car parks on the Dockray road. I’d made an early start and was the first one there, as I was hoping to avoid the crowds that are attracted by the waterfalls

I made my way down to Aira Beck at the top of the falls, then headed along the beck before turning up the rather dull and featureless slopes of Gowbarrow Fell. It was easy going and I was soon at the top. The views are mediocre thanks to intervening high ground but I knew that better was to come

The recently improved path (thanks, Fix the Fells) took me down the flanks of the fell towards Ullswater. I’d deliberately planned to walk clockwise so that the superlative views to the head of Ullswater were in front of me – the next mile or so was a walk in heaven. The weather had cleared and it was a wonder I didn’t trip over a passing rock as I gazed in awe at the scenery ahead

All too soon the path descended and turned away from the lake, but the fun wasn’t over – Aira Force was still to come. I could hear it before I could see it, a thunderous roar followed by the sight of tons of cascading water, it was spectacular. I followed a path which took me up Aira Beck to the top by way of the various upper falls, and I then retraced my steps back to the start. What a fantastic walk

Previous time here

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