That was the plan anyway. I think my travels with Mum have spoiled me somewhat – all the staying in nice hotels, plus until this week we’ve been pretty lucky with the weather. During the drive from Yorkshire across to Cumbria I started feeling like I was suffering from more than just hay fever, with a hot face and sore eyes so we booked into the Britannia Hotel, just down the road from the campsite I’d planned to stay at.
We ate dinner there – the most delicious steak and mushroom pie I think I’ve ever had – and slept in beds that were as soft as clouds… although a great deal more squeaky. The Britannia is a charming pub. 500 years old and obviously extremely popular with walkers.
It’s been interesting to contemplate what it must be like for locals and businesses in an area like Windermere. The place is heaving with tourists. From busloads of kids and the elderly to groups of extremely serious walkers, carrying everything on their backs like snails with their shells. Almost every car space costs money unless it comes with your accommodation. Many cafes charge money to power your laptops and phones. Even campsites have device-charging stations. Traffic is nightmarish in many spots due to the extremely narrow roads and right now it’s a miserable weekday. What happens during August when everyone’s on holidays and the sun is out… I can’t even imagine.
We left the Britannia Tuesday morning, after getting a jump start from one of the staff there (left the lights on… again! Van Failen doesn’t even have a dashboard light to indicate the lights are on) and had to go for a long drive to recharge the battery so we headed to Honiston Pass, where I’d been with Mum a couple of weeks before.
The weather was worse than last time but we got out and went for a walk up the side of the hill to a mine entrance at the top. When we rounded the corner the wind went from ‘annoying’ to ‘gale force’ and I took a few quick photos of the view down the valley before heading back.
That afternoon we made it to Baysbrook Farm and set up our campsite. Apple and pork sausages cooked in the saucepan and smothered with tomato relish tasted pretty good outdoors, although having to fight off the extremely confident and curious farm chickens was an unexpected challenge.
The weather got progressively windier and the tarp whipped around a bit during the night. Despite this we could still hear a guy snoring in a tent 20 metres away.
This was the view from our campsite.