Derek Fogg | Love the Lakes - England's Largest National Park

Love the Lakes - England's Largest National Park

June 28, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

The Lake District is a mountainous region in North West England being the largest National Park in England and Wales, and second largest in the British Isles. Also recently becoming a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  All the land in England higher than 3000 feet above sea level lies within it, including Scafell Pike, the highest mountain in England.  It also contains the deepest and longest lakes in England.  The Lake District is made up of series of over 80 glacial lakes, mountain tarns and several reservoirs.  Of these, around 20 are considered significant.  The sizes of the lakes vary, with Windermere being the largest in both length and width.  The deepest of the lakes is Wast Water with a maximum depth of 250 feet.  Only Bassenthwaite Lake is officially referred to as a lake, the remaining names end in either water or mere - the latter term refers to a lake that is broad in relation to its depth.  A tarn is used to refer to any small lake although it originally meant a form of a glacial mountain lake.  In this short visit, we are going to see some of the lesser known areas of water and valleys.  We'll start at Brother's Water. Brothers Water is in the Hartsop valley and is a small lake in the eastern region of the Lakes.  Once called Broad Water, it lies at the northern end of Kirkstone Pass, affording picturesque views on the descent towards Patterdale.  The name Broad Water was changed in the 19th century after two brothers drowned there.  

 

Brothers WaterBrothers Water

 

Now we'll bring into view one of the many valleys in the Lakes.  The narrow Kentmere Valley spans about 3 miles in length and begins with a bowl of hills known as the Kentmere Round; a horseshoe of high fells which surrounds Kentmere Reservoir.  The reservoir is now the source of the River Kent which gives Kendal its name. The valley is sandwiched between Troutbeck on the west side and Longsleddale on the east.  

 

Kentmere ValleyKentmere Valley

 

We've visited a 'water' so now let's take a luck at a 'mere'.  Buttermere, which derives its name from a corruption of 'Boethar', a Norse chieftain who bestowed his name on the lake, is approached via the bleak Honister Pass.  The lake, which is one and a half miles long, just under a mile across at its widest point, and over 90 feet deep, was divided from adjacent Crummock Water when a larger lake silted up at its centre.  Fleetwith Pike and Haystacks can be seen in the background.

 

ButtermereButtermere

 

Finally, for this visit, the Little Langdale valley, viewed from High Tilberthwaite which contains Little Langdale Tarn and a hamlet also called Little Langdale.  A second tarn, Blea Tarn, is a hanging valley between Little Langdale and the larger Great Langdale to the north.  Little Langdale is flanked on the south and southwest by Wetherlam and Swirl How, and to the north and northwest by Lingmoor Fell and Pike of Blisco.  The valley descends to join with Great Langdale above Elter Water.

 

Little Langdale ValleyLittle Langdale Valley

 

I hope you have enjoyed this brief excursion to some of the quieter areas of the Lakes.


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