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Inspiration in Ennerdale, Lake District

Ennerdale Water is the most westerly lake in the Lake District National Park in Cumbria.

Day 3 of my Cumbria trip last week.

With the promise of blue skies and good weather I woke up early. At my Airbnb I had breakfast with views of the Ennerdale Valley.

In drove to Ennerdale Water for a walk around the lake. It’s the only lake in the Lake District that doesn’t have a road along it. At 8am the reflections on the steel blue lake perfectly mirrored the hillside above.

Walking along the footpath south of the lake I was following the path of the infamous Coast to Coast Walk. The 188 mile walking route was created by Alfred Wainright and crosses three National Parks across the North of England.

Along the way I met people walking the second day of the whole Coast to Coast route. Firstly I met Dom, on his own, camping along the way and full of spirit about his adventures ahead. Then further along I met Helen and her friend with their 2 dogs. They were doing half of the route and coming back to do the rest another time.

The path clings to the lakeside before climbing slightly up the rocky shoreline for views of the route ahead down the valley.

At a patch of twisted trees and moss covered rocks it felt like the right time for an early lunch.

At the end of the lake it was time for me to leave the Coast to Coast route and walk back along the north side of the lake.

The walk is 8 miles around the lake and taken from the green Pathfinder Guide - Lake District Walks.

Traveling on your own can be quite daunting. This trip I’ve loved how open and friendly everyone has been. At Ennerdale I met another dog walker, who curious to why I was talking so many photos, gave me lots of snippets of information on the local area.

I’d heard about a community cafe called the Gather in Ennerdale Bridge, so after the walk popped in for a delicious coffee and cake.

It was only 4pm so I couldn’t resit exploring some more on my bike.

A hilly 25 mile loop took to me past Ennerdale Water and along to Loweswater with stunning views of the mountains all around.

I’d loved to have carried on towards Buttermere but it was a bit late in the day for that. The Kirkstall Inn in Loweswater was tempting too but it was time head back to my Airbnb in Fritzington. This was the view from my room!

I'l be definitely be using this walk as inspiration for a new linocut print of the walk around Ennerdale Water.

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Read day 2 of my Cumbria blog and walk along St Bees head here.


About the author

Michelle Hughes is a North Yorkshire landscape artist. Much of her work depicts the Yorkshire landscape and Yorkshire coast, including the Yorkshire Dales and North York Moors.

Michelle loves exploring the British countryside by bike or on foot, camera in hand, capturing ideas for her next linocut prints. Back in her garden studio, Michelle creates simple but stylised silhouettes based on her photographs, and hand carves these shapes into lino. She hand prints with an etching press, using oil-based inks to create tonal blocks of colour.

Michelle’s original linocut prints are limited editions.

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