Lake District
Circular Walk
Windermere - Claife Heights

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This walk escapes the hustle and bustle of Windermere and Bowness to tranquil woodlands of Claife Heights on Windermere’s western shore.

Make your way to the Nab for the ferry

Take the footpath to the right going north along the lake shore

The islands include: Thomsonholme, the quaintly named pair The Llilies of the Valley, and the largest – Belle Isle – the tower seen through the trees was built by a Mr English in 1774 It replaced the original built in the 13th century and destroyed in the Civil War by a Colonel Briggs.

Ladyholme once had a medieval chapel but now no trace is left – it may well have been destroyed in the 1536 Pilgrimage of Grace.

Keep to the path as it leaves the shore for short detour into the woods, continue until you return to the shore and reach Belle Grange Bay, this used to be the ferry point, crossing to Miller Ground Landing.

A ghostly figure still calls the ferryman, said to be one of a wedding party, on October 19th 1635 47 guest retuning from a ceremony in Hawkeshead were drowned when the ferry sank. Sightings of the phantom boat are accompanied by terrible screams and cries.

Leave the shore here following the bridlepath, once the main horse and carriage road between Hawkeshead and Windermere

Turn left along the signposted forest path.

There are many deer in these woods, though you are more likely to see their fraying marks on the trees than see the actual deer themselves.

Wordsworth complained bitterly about the changes to the landscape, caused by rich industrialists, buying up the land and build tasteless and intrusive mansions

However not all caused him dismay, a wealthy mine owner John Christian Kerwin bought Belle Isle from Mr English and planted it, and much of this western shore with rich and varied woodlands.

Continue through the woods

Descend Llow Pate Crag

Follow the path until you reach a junction; turn left and little further on turn right

Taking the path through Station Scar wood, until you rejoin the road turning left to arrive at the ferry, after passing the Old Station House, now derelict, it once contained colour windows which purported to show the lakes as they looked in different seasons.

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Alan Howarth: Corporate Photographer, Corporate Video Producer and Corporate Writer based near Blackpool, Preston & Lancaster, Lancashire in the North West of the UK, I frequently work in Leeds, Manchester and Birmingham and I spend 50% of my time working in London. within the M25, I travel throughout the UK and often work in mainland Europe, with work published throughout the world. As a corporate photographer my portrait images will enhance your marketing and your business, my video production skills can enhance your video email marketing campaigns. Email me now. I'll go anywhere - except war zones.

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