The beast from the East

Like everywhere else in the country we have had the ‘Beast from the East’ during the past week. Instead of snow however we have had mainly sunny days with blue skies but it has been bitterly cold with temperatures scarcely rising above freezing. Earlier in the week it was very calm and the swans were quietly feeding on Loweswater

but there was ice about.

By Friday morning we were being hit by an icy blast and the bushes along the wall at Crummock were starting to ice over.

I couldn’t get through to the pumping station because of an icy bush hanging over the track which was sheet ice.

After a very windy night I braved the weather and went down to the lake again but by the gated track to reach the far side of the pumping station.

The route to the kissing gate was impassible

It was incredibly beautiful but I now certainly understand wind chill.


We’re now a week into February and the snowdrops are looking at their best.

The weather has been very mixed from sunny days with snow and ice to rain and squelching mud. One rather icy day Judy and I met at Maggie’s Bridge and went up the valley between Hencomb and Gavel. We went to the sheep fold at the head of the valley,  returned to High Nook and from there joined the terrace path. We stopped for a very cold lunch on the seat  – Judy amazingly still had some Christmas cake to share! The view from the seat shows a very clear snow line between the valley and the fells.

As I walked home along the road from the far end of Loweswater I found these lovely broken pieces of ice gathering on the shoreline of the lake.

I think during the lockdowns we have become more observant and also give ourselves time to stand and stare. I came across this beautiful lichen on a tree stump when on a bike ride near Rogerscale.

The past weeks have not just been walks, I have also had my cottage inspection and retained my five star rating. The inspector writes:

‘The properties sit safely at the higher end of the banding with all areas meeting the expectations at this high Star level. The continued high levels of presentation have enabled the Gold Accolade to be reconfirmed once again this year.’

Like many people, I still can’t resist taking photos from the front of Foulsyke particularly on bright wintery afternoons.

I think however the sheep had other things on their minds.