Jo’s Monday walk : Aira Force

Beautiful Aira Force

Beautiful Aira Force

You have no idea how delighted I was to be able to visit Aira Force!  The forecast wasn’t great and, as we approached the English Lake District, a swirl of damp cloaked the mountains.  But a waterfall’s no good without the water, is it?  And in Autumn, the canopy of leaves radiates!  Driving through a tunnel of flame and gold, the senses are filled with wonder.

I had planned to walk to the falls from the nearby village of Glenridding, our base for the evening, but the road south from Pooley Bridge bypassed them.  Carpe diem had never seemed so appropriate.  A pocket of opportunity, as the drizzle ceased momentarily.

The National Trust car park

The National Trust car park

The car park was not as deserted as I might have expected, though the picnic tables were definitely unoccupied.  There were just enough people to exchange smiles with, in a ‘good to be alive’ sort of way.  A celebration of our good fortune.

Those coins get everywhere!

Those coins get everywhere!

Treading carefully on the damp leaves underfoot, I could hear already the gurgle of water.  The stream chuckled merrily on its way to the lake.  Not far to go!  But for me, it was upwards by a series of steps, pausing often to admire my beautiful surroundings.

Onwards and upwards!

Onwards and upwards!

I was eager for my first sighting of the waterfall.  Suddenly, through the trees, I caught a glimpse of its magnificense.

It looked wonderful!

So alluring!

Just a little more bracken

But first a little more bracken

And a few steps

And a few more steps

Beneath the bridge

And we’ve reached the bridge

The sound of rushing water has reached a crescendo.  Steps lead down to the bridge and I cannot stop myself from descending.  I lean over and gaze in worshipful awe.  From beneath me, the falls tear away to join the calm of the lake.

The falls tear away to the lake from beneath me

Leaping joyfully down to Ullswater

Leaving the lower bridge behind, I head on up to the top of the falls, the water my constant companion.  That and the moss and leaves. It’s possible to continue up to Gowbarrow Fell and the trig point for views all along the lake, but on a murky day like this the visibility would be poor.  And I’m so loath to leave the water behind.

My constant companion

My constant companion

And always the water

Chirruping water

And my other companion

And my other companion

The air feels increasingly damp and we decide to retrace our steps and cross over the upper bridge.  The descent on the other side of the falls is down yet more steps, but they are well spaced, and not too slippy in stout shoes.

We can now look back at the full 65 foot height of the falls, which I found very difficult to photograph.  My little camera has its limits, and I most certainly do.  I have too much ‘white light’ in the shot.  I tried different angles but it didn’t help.  I’m sorry!

But I was much taken with this aged log

But I was much taken with this aged log

A certain person was getting rather impatient.  I suspect you might be ready for a seat somewhere too.  I spotted a lovely one but it was a bit damp.

What do you think?

What do you think?

He's wondering when we're going to get to cake!

He’s wondering when we’re going to get to cake!

I think we’ve had enough exercise, don’t you?  I hope you enjoyed it, despite all those steps.  This link will give you clearer guidance on how to negotiate the various paths, and National Trust can help you to get here.

walking logo

Many thanks to so many of you who have again contributed to making my Monday walks a great place to be.  Shall we get the kettle on, ready for a good read?  If you’d like to join me you’ll be made very welcome.  Full details are on my Jo’s Monday walk page.  Just click on the logo above.


Introducing Phoebe, in the lovely South of France, with not a drop of rain in sight.  Please say hello :

Coast Walk : the Cap d’Antibes

Tobermory says Scotland to me, but this one’s equally beautiful.  Thanks, Violet Sky!


Sounds like a good book?  And you’ll enjoy Anabel’s company, in Scotland!

Two Towers

Amy has something pretty spectacular for you this week :

Monday Walk : Cascade Caverns

The cutest giraffes!  Thanks for taking us to the zoo, Jackie  :

The Living Desert, Palm Springs CA

Photos do not come any more beautiful than this first one!  Many thanks, Lucile :

Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge : Nature

Jesh always has an interesting take on life.  And there’s an apple cake recipe too!

Apple Hill

I know you’ll all be waiting for Part 2 of Rotterdam.  I was!  Bring on the windmills, Elena!

Rotterdam in a Day (part 2)

Denzil finds some strange things in the Belgian countryside :

Outrelouxhe : Just because… I like the name

If you’re seeking entertainment you can’t do better than join Badfish!

Treats and Tricks in Oman

And as I’ve pointed out before, Tobias has a very different take on life :


Wonderful variety again this week so thank you all very much.  It’s going to be a wild one, I think, so hang onto your hats!  Have a happy one and I’ll see you all soon.


    1. I’ve thought of you too, Pauline. Has your wonderful month come to an end? I know you’ll have come back with a big sackful of lovely memories. 🙂 Thanks for thinking of me.

  1. What a beautiful walk Jo – the autumnal colours are so pretty and I can almost smell the damp bracken and hear the rushing water. Wouldn’t mind a spot of cooler weather – it’s rather hot here at present but mustn’t complain as we do live near the sea and benefit from the afternoon breeze! Have loved looking through your photos and reminiscing about English autumn days. Have a lovely weekend 🙂

  2. How lovely – and what a coincidence that I’ve just posted a photo of a waterfall on my blog too! I’ve never visited the Lake District (I know!) crazy that someone from England hasn’t visited such a beautiful part of the country. Great photos, Jo.

  3. un luogo magico! sono veramente convinta che lì abitino gli Elfi e le fate, e magari ti hanno fatto dispetto e si nascondevano perché tu non riuscissi a fotografarli, gelosi che hai fatto immagini strepitose del loro habitast

  4. I’m a bit late joining in with this walk, but it was definitely worth it! Although it was a dreary day (here in the UK we have to go on our walks regardless, don’t we?) it looks lovely – so much to see with little paths, steps, bridges and of course the fabulous waterfall.

    1. You know what they say, Elaine. Much better late than never 🙂 Thank you for making the effort. I’ve had a thoroughly traumatic morning, locking us out of the car with the keys still inside and quite a long way from home. 😦 Survived to tell the tale, fortunately. 🙂

  5. The weather definitely seems to have cooperated for the day. The colors were bright and it really is a little slice of paradise! Those stacked coins are really interesting, Jo! What an appealing walk this was. 🙂

  6. What would our beautiful Lake District be without fog and rain? Such a glorious, November walk this Jo…and such a wonderful waterfall. There’s something quite magical about them isn’t there? I am now breathing deeply…thank you lovely lady 🙂 xx

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