Boat How with Fr. John

Name of walk Boat How with Fr. John
Date of walk 2018-08-07
Distance walked (miles) 5
Duration of walk 5 hours 15 minutes
Weather Rain, low cloud, then sunshine
Peaks on walk Boat How
Walked with Fr. John Inglis
Parking Ravenglass and Eskdale Steam Railway Station

On Tuesday I did a walk with Father John, who is up for his annual lakes holiday, and holding the fort for Fr. Tom in the Keswick and Cockermouth parishes. As I am still not up to the big fells yet, I thought we could do Boat How, another Wainwright Outlying Fell with great views. We could meet up at Ravenglass and catch the Steam Train into Eskdale (Ravenglass to Eskdale Railway, aka La’al Ratty). The walk was just over five miles. The forecast was for rain and low cloud which should be clearing after midday. So ever the optimist this is what we did!

01

Our steam train to take us to Dalegarth. The 'Whillan Beck' is also known as the 'Train from Spain'

02

An old dog walking the tracks.

03

I got chatting to a couple of the Steam Railway volunteers, Albie (left) and Martin. It turned out that Albie comes from Wivenhoe, Essex, where my family are from. He also lives in the same road as my grandparents used to live and my uncle and aunt still do, and used to work for my uncle Ken! Small world! Martin, a former vicar, who had three dogs with him, is from Whitechapel. His grandfather was killed during the war, a week after starting work at the Whitechapel Bell Foundry. They were both being dropped off en route to do some grass strimming by the line. Albie got to ride on the footplate with Anna our driver.

04

Despite Martin joking that she'd probably get lost, Anna got us to Dalegarth Station in forty minutes.

05

There were not many on our train!

06

John and the train which has just been turned on the turntable. We are in no rush, so stop for a coffee in the station cafe, before walking to Boot.

07

Heading into the hamlet of Boot.

08

The water mill has just begun a major restoration project. We go past the mill and head up the track turning to the right. After about 100m we take the gate on the right. This path goes all the way to Burnmoor Tarn.

09

An easy path with a gentle incline. It is raining now, so waterproofs go on.

10

The mist is right down on the hills.

11

We continue on in the rain.

12

None of the beautiful vistas that I promised John.

13

View back in the direction of Boot.

14

Even the animals are hunkered down!

15

16

We were on the look out for a ruined peat hut. This was where we would come off path and head up to Boat How. We stopped and had lunch here. John had made smoked salmon sandwiches and coffee for lunch....he knows how to spoil me! We sat outside, as the wall provided shelter from the rain. The peat hut was roofless.

17

Me inside.

18

From the back of the peat hut we headed upwards over very tussocky grass that sometimes came to mid thigh. Not great terrain for a knee replacement!

19

Peat hut view.

20

Looking over to Eel Tarn.

21

At the top of the rise Boat How comes into view, and this has a grassy track to it.

22

The summit glorious vista!

23

Looking down into Miterdale

24

The clouds are being very slow to lift.

25

Burnmoor Tarn. Behind that, in the mist, is Scafell. To my left is Illgill Head.

26

We head thataway.

27

View back to Boat How.

28

John heading down a craggy bit.

29

Top of the mound is an ancient stone circle, but to go see it would mean leaving the track and negotiating more tussocky grass, so we just give it a wave! It will still be there next time!

30

A rock with a view.

31

The mist is rising. It is just hanging on to the top of Whin Rigg.

32

Eel Tarn is now much more clear to see.

33

Mist gone! Illgill Head left and Boat How right.

34

We stop at a big rock to remove our waterproofs.

35

There is even a glimpse of sunshine as we make for the old peat huts.

36

John with the peat huts in the distance. I brought my sister here last year.

37

Close up of Stanley Gill Waterfall. I walked down beside it from the Birker Fell road last year.

38

Mist still on the higher fells.

39

40

We approach the peat huts. Some are in better condition than others.

41

42

The mist is starting to clear off Scafell. John looking through the top door.

43

There is a sheep taking shelter.

44

We tell her that the rain has stopped, but she seems happy where she is.

45

T-shirt and shorts weather now!

46

47

Taking the path back down to Boot.

48

Boot.

49

We pass the gate we went through this morning that goes to Burnmoor Tarn.

50

Naturally, we stop at the pub.

51

We walk back to Dalegarth Station. The view to the hills.

52

Our steam train back.

53

A bit busier than this morning!

54

The hills are looking good in the sunshine.

55

Our train chasing a sheep along the track.

Including the stops at the cafe, lunch at the peat hut and the pub, the walk took us five and a quarter hours. We needed to take our time, in order to wait for the mist to clear……that’s my excuse anyway! John had never been on the steam railway, so I think he enjoyed the different mode of walk transport. Tomorrow we plan to do a walk from Keswick….an easy one! Maybe Walla Crag!

Jo.

 

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