Recently I have been in the Lake District again, Keswick to be accurate and had the chance to enjoy all that area has to offer. Its not my first visit but I am drawn to the area for its natural beauty, lots of things to do and see and of course, some great geocaching which here in particular gets you places you would not normally visit.
Keswick sits right in the heart of the Lakes, at the very tip of Derwent Water, providing the perfect location for those looking to scale some of the mountains that surround you or take to the water itself. The town is a walkers paradise, with shops along the pretty high street catering for all sporting activities.
First Up: Latrigg
The town itself is dominated to the north by the peaks of Latrigg and Skiddaw, with both having caches (traditional) at there peaks. Latrigg is a ‘fell’ as opposed to a ‘mountain’ in its classification and is reachable by wheelchair users as the path way from the carpark to the top is good, wide and flat, however the cache is a little ‘off-piste’ and will sadly not be reachable.
So it was the Latrigg Geocache where I started my first attempt. I had tried it before and failed so I was confident that this time I would bag it. The weather was against me, blowing a gale and rain coming in horizontally but I was not fazed. I was on a mission to succeed.
I walked from the centre of Keswick, following the well documented footpath out of the town, across the main road bridge and began circling the fell. The start is hard going, very steep but stick with it, it does even out eventually.
The views from the path way up, as well as at the top itself are fabulous, offing far reaching views of Keswick and Derwent Water, as well as the ominous presence of Skiddaw behind you.
Once at the bench on the top its a scramble about 200ft downhill where the cache “A View of Keswick” can be found. Or not as in my case. If you have luck here, be sure to let me know!
From that first day exertion I move onto something a little more sedate and took the car the short drive to “A Surprise View” – a traditional cache placed in 2004, in great shape and as the name suggests, offering great views of Derwent and up to Keswick.
It is here that ‘Max the Miracle’ Dog lies at rest and I was there on the day he went over the rainbow bridge in these woods. You can catch his statue down in the town gardens;
Moving away from Keswick for the moment and onto Buttermere which takes you the The Honister Pass which is as near to driving on the moon as you are likely to get. Breath-taking scenery here with the chance to grab a couple of Traditional geocaches and an Earth Cache at the Honister Slate Mine.
Buttermere is a short drive through the Pass and offers the chance to park here (public toilets on hand, as well as a tea-room and a pub serving food) to walk around the lake (4.5miles) on a path offering just a couple of challenging parts which wheelchair users could circumvent by moving onto the road (quiet, slow vehicles) for a short time.
Look out for numerous waterfalls, crystal clear water, lots of benches to sit and enjoy a sandwich and my favourite find, the striking white memorial cross of Fanny Mercer – can you spot it on your way around?
Well documented, a chance to to pick up the Earth Cache at Rydal Caves simply cannot be missed. Parking at either White Moss Car Park or Pelter Bridge Car Park the caves (man-made) are approx. 1mile away. Not suitable for wheelchair users. The caves will get busy at sometimes so try and get to the car-parks early as they fill up pretty quickly and are small. If you have little people or your dog with you, they will get wet as the caves have ponds in them which can get deep.
Just a small snippet into Geocaching in the Lake District. A week does not really allow enough time to fit in all in, and an honourable mention should be made to the Cathedral Cavern Cache which simply a must do when in the Lakes and more details can be found from my previous visit here – http://geocaching.co.uk/favourite-finds/cathedral-caven-cache/
Others places of note include Grasmere and Windermere which are a stones throw from Keswick and provide trails and caches to appear to all.