Lake District


North Yorkshire

North Wales



About Summiteer

~Fell Foot and Finsthwaite~

11th April 2010

What is they say about the best laid plans of mice and men? Always have a reserve plan and a few maps to hand....

Mazda MX-5

The Ratmobile

Scroll down for photos and a description of the walk

Haverthwaite Steam Engine

Princess at Haverthwaite Station

Every now and again Karen and I start our day in the Lakes with breakfast at The Hat-Trick Cafe, Low Newton. I'd checked the website for their opening time and it is 10:30 on Sundays. Heartened by the breakfast, we would move on to Hodge Close and climb Holme Fell.

The cafe was closed on this day only, due to an electrical supply problem! Plan B - get something to eat at Fell Foot - closed due to flooding! Plan C try the railway restuarant at Haverthwaite - Open. This was a blessing because, in my opinion, NT cafes generally fall well short of my demanding standards of quality and, particularly, value for money.

Haverthwaite Cafe

Haverthwaite Refreshments

Good menu and plenty of staff and tables. I took a look at the clock and after much debate with myself, I decided on a complete change of plan and we would return to Fell Foot for some free parking (NT Members) and take the ferry across to Lakeside and go "Outlying".

Fell Foot and Windermere

Fell Foot and Windermere

Eternally popular spot for families, we've been here many times in the past. The cafe is being dried out and refurbished after a rain shower in November '09. My careful plan for free parking and cost savings was thwarted because the ferry across the lake was £1.50 each, both ways - £6. It transpired that all day parking at Lakeside is £3.50 - less than I was expecting.

Ferry across the lake

The Ferry

Lakeside Pier

Lakeside Pier

Footpath Sign


I had my "Outlying Fells of Lakeland" book with me and I chose we should visit Finsthwaite and High Dam, but not following the exact route as suggested by Mr.Wainwright.

Finsthwaite Woods

Great Knott Wood

We walked into the woods and it's a fair climb up on the way to Finsthwaite, this is the reverse of the route suggested by AW.



Yesterday I was looking around Burnley and Todmorden. This is not just 70 miles away from where I live, it's half a world away, an oasis of peace and tranquility.

High Dam

High Dam

We walked through Finsthwaite, Wainwright says that there is a tuck-shop therein, but I couldn't find it! You can park at the church if there is no service, as long as you make a donation. Our route took us to see High Dam first and Low Dam second. There were lots of folk about and I was dismayed to find a car park at the top end of Finsthwaite, this enables tourists and the like to find these places - you know people wearing jeans and trainers and lugging carrier bags instead of rucksacs. Blackpool was missing a few dozen regulars today.

Low Dam Finsthwaite

Low Dam


Finsthwaite Boulders

These boulders sit in one of the fields near Finsthwaite, I think that they will have been deposited by retreating glaciers, the adjoining fellside didn't look like the type to throw these down the hill. We took the route back to Newby Bridge.



These fields carry the path towards Newby Bridge. AW went up through the gate in the right of the this photo. The National Park have put a notice on the gate saying "No Public Access", so we didn't bother and carried on directly for NB, missing the tower, although I think there would have been another way to get to it without upsetting the landowners.

Boat on Windermere

MV Teal

We had a brew in the upstairs cafe at Lakeside, the downstairs one being another victim of the November rains.

Railway at Lakeside

The 15:45 is ready to depart from Lakeside with the Haverthwaite express. This railway is cute, maybe charming, definately not exciting, but certainly an important part of the preserved heritage railway network and the Japanese love it!!

Well, that's it, we caught the ferry back to Fell Foot. It was a good day out, quite a long drive for a short walk, but the blue skies were very welcome. The Ratmobile has just been serviced and polished and the roof was down for the first time this year.

Walkers: Karen and Me

Time taken: 2hrs 30 minutes over a distance of about 5 miles.

Route: Lakeside, Great Knott Wood, Finsthwaite, High Dam, Low Dam, Finsthwaite, Wintering Park, back road to Lakeside from Newby Bridge.

Weather and conditions: A warm and sunny day.

Greetings Count: Quiet to Finsthwaite, untidily busy in the environs of High and Low Dam.

Richard's Refreshment Review: Haverthwaite Station Restuarant, see above.

All photos copyright Richard Ratcliffe 2010 © Leave a comment below if you like, it's quick, free and painless.

Take me back to the start ....

Take me home....