Day 4: Grasmere to Patterdale

We had a pleasant walk today (probably our easiest so far) from Grasmere (Wordsworth territory) to Patterdale. Tonight we are staying at Old Water View, an excellent guesthouse where AW Wainwright, who is credited with making the Coast to Coast walk a well loved adventure trail for hardy folk willing to tolerate blisters and stiff muscles (at best) lodged on many occasions.

On the road from Grasmere to Patterdale

On the road from Grasmere to Patterdale

William Wordsworth, in Extract from Poems on the Naming of Places: IV, wrote:

A narrow girdle of rough stones and crags,
A rude and natural causeway, interposed
Between the water and a winding slope
Of copse and thicket, leaves the eastern short
Of Grasmere safe in its own privacy:
And there my self and two beloved Friends
One calm September morning, ere the mist
Had altogether yielded to the sun,
Sauntered on this retired and difficult way.

The opening stanza of Sir Walter Scott’s poem ‘Helvellyn' is reproduced below. The tarn on one side of Hervellyn is portrayed in the photo.

At the base of Hervellyn

At the base of Hervellyn

I climbed the dark brow of the mighty Helvellyn,
Lakes and mountains beneath me gleamed misty and wide;
All was still, save by fits, when the eagle was yelling,
And starting around me the echoes replied.
On the right, Striden-edge round the Red-tarn was bending,
And Catchedicam its left verge was defending,
One huge, nameless rock in the front was ascending,
When I marked the sad spot where the wanderer had died.

Thankfully, the dead wanderer was not one of our party!

And penultimately, a photo taken on our arrival at Patterdale. Tomorrow we embark on one of our most challenging walks, Patterdale to Shap.


Two of our party, The Lactic Acid Drop and Coconut Milk, are leaving at first light to travel upstream on a steamer, and then walking the next 16km to Shap. The rest of our party (Butterscotch Stayer, Lemon Sherbet, The Water Tank, and Tea Bag), are taking an alternative 23km route up a mountain (or two). 

Soon I will be letting you know about our accommodation (sheets, eggs, and advice on (non) realistic timeframes for walks) and people we have met along the way (Heathcliff, Mountain Man with mountain bike, The Canadians, the Viking, the Duke of Eds, and the Octogenarians).