When I’ve been to the Lake District before, I’ve mainly explored the Northern Lakes region around Derwent Water, Ullswater and Buttermere, and my only blog about the other end of the National Park until now has been a slightly tongue-in-cheek dig at Windermere’s comparative privatisation.
But that was based on flippant prejudice and one afternoon’s quick passing through, so when I was up in the north west in November, wondering how to make the most of 2016’s late-running autumn colour, I thought maybe I should give it some better times of day.
So I popped up to Ambleside for a couple of days, and the YHA positioned perfectly on the Windermere lake shore for capturing the early morning mist where the cold air rolls down the mountainsides and valleys and condenses clouds over the water.
And it turned out to be an alright choice, with two almost perfect mornings of blue skies, rolling mist and alpenglow on the snow-capped mountains of the Langdale Pikes and Tilberthwaite Fells, followed by the strengthening sun lighting up the autumn colours in the woodland of Brathay Hall and Pullwood Bay.
I got a bit carried away, spoiled for choice of compositions and capturing them all along the shore of Ambleside Waterhead, with its ferryboats and traditional wooden piers, canoeists and courting swans, and two or three other photographers despite the freezing temperatures.
Until eventually the mist rose and clouds gathered around Wetherlam and the waters of Windermere turned grey again.
It’s not all that bad though, I suppose, Windermere. But it might still be the lesser of the lakes.