After a drizzly start on Sunday morning the clouds rolled back to be replaced by glorious sunshine. We jumped in the car and dashed over to Ambleside, still reasonably early so as to avoid the crowds. First stop was coffee at Freshers Cafe (very pleasant with a flower-filled garden and some entertaining dogs) and then we set off to walk along the Under Loughrigg lane as we didn’t have our boots on and thought some of the other tracks might be too muddy.
Last time we tried this route it was sleeting diagonally and so utterly horrible that we wimped out and took a short cut back to the car. This time there were no such problems; it was perfect weather for walking – warm without being hot, and clear enough for some lovely views towards the fells. And we’d left ourselves enough time to walk all the way to Pelter Bridge (above) on the outskirts of Rydal, which we’ve never quite managed before.
The bridge, built in the style of a pack-horse bridge, is a well-known landmark over the River Rothay, visible whilst tearing past in a car on the main A591 between Ambleside and Grasmere. It turns out to be Grade II listed; the listing describes it as ‘date unknown’ but given that it’s in parkland near Rydal Hall I’m betting it was built by the hall’s owners at some point. It’s very pretty, at any rate!
There were plenty of walkers about, especially at the Rydal end where there’s a car park in staggering distance of the lane, but it was never crowded and it was great to get out for a nice country stroll on such a lovely day.