Team news for November 2016

  • Fixing the landslide at Seldom Seen

    11:48 30 November 2016
    By Ade Mills, Leo Walmsley , Pete Entwistle

    As part of our work on the path at Seldom Seen we have also recently repaired a substantial landslide, around ten metres in length, which was washed away during heavy rain.

     Landslide from below

    The first part of the job was to build the path up to it's original height. Using large stones (the same as we use for path building) a dry stone wall was built and the area behind the wall was filled in with material excavated from elsewhere on the path.

     Building up the revetment wall

    The top side of the path had also been badly eroded by walkers trying to find a new route around the landslip. This area was re-profiled and a trench dug into the bank to take water away from the revetment wall and send it through stone drains at either side.

     View of the landslide from the path

    Once the revetment wall was completed and back-filled we covered the path surface with pinnel. Pinnel is a type of gravelly soil that compacts down very well to form a hard surface. This was dug out from around the washout and from the path above. It's very labour intensive to dig but gave the path a really nice solid finish.

     Repaired path showing the drainage

    Finally the top of the wall was turfed and landscaped to discourage people from walking on the edge and potentially causing damage.

     Landslide from a slightly different angle

    The new section of path has made a huge difference and will help prevent the area becoming further eroded by people trying to pick a route around it.

     Repaired section of path

    Beyond the landslide a stone path was built incorporating stone drains to prevent water running down on to the area that had been washed out.

    Footpath beyond the landslide
  • Saturday 26 November

    08:47 26 November 2016
    By Clair Payne, Craig Hutchinson, Glenn Bailey, Ian Griffiths, John Atkinson, John Moffat, Luke Sherwen, Matthew Allmark, Nick Petrie, Paul Farrington, Paul Kear , Richard Tanner, Rob Clarke, Sam Stalker, Sarah Anderson, Stuart Graham

    Fell Season 2016




    The South Lakes upland footpath team have been hard at it Fixing the Fells this year, whilst on our travels we've encountered wild weather, mountain mists, a healthy dose of hard working volunteers and one or two foot paths.

    We've had projects running all over the Lakes and helped out some of the other teams too! Here's a rundown of some of the jobs we've been getting up to.  


    Threshthwaite Cove

    Threshthwaite Cove & Raven Crag
    Threshthwaite Cove is a beautiful quiet valley (if not a little windy at the best of times!) situated near Hartsop.

    Erosion scar before


    After landscaping

    Thresthwaite is a very damp place indeed and the path suffers a great deal from flowing water and foot fall. Above we have tried to define a path line and re-vegetate the damaged areas. 



    Working holiday group





    Working with different volunteer groups we carried out work all the way along the valley including installation of rock stepping stones, path definition and drain building.







    Sca Fell Pike

    Wasdale Valley
    From time to time the upland teams like to help each other out, earlier in the year we had the chance to go to the dramatic wild west-ern fells to work on Sca Fell Pike.


    West Lakes team on brown tongue. Wastwater at the back.
    Path widening















    Brown Tongue is a popular route up England's highest mountain and can be incredibly busy all year round. To reduce erosion and help accommodate the vast numbers of feet on the hill the path from bottom to top (its a big path, trust me!) is being widened. In the picture to the right you can see the new and wider pitching merging into the older path which is soon to be replaced.

    Dolly Wagon PIke & Fairfield

    We have have been paying some attention to the hills surrounding the popular Grisedale Tarn. With many a hard working volunteer group and help from both the Western and Northern upland teams we've been landscaping out side routes and placing stepping stones over sensitive peat bog. And look here some kindly fellow has labeled the hills just in case!!  

    Working holiday


    Opposite direction!


    Below is a section of much needed pitching Nick put in near the summit of Dolly Wagon Pike. 




    Helvellyn

    Helvellyn is an understandably popular mountain which on a clear day rewards anyone who ventures up there with stunning views of the whole of the Lake district and beyond to up to Scotland and the Howgills to the east. It's therefore unsurprising to hear that we concentrate a great deal of effort up here.  

    Thirlmere from Brown Cove Crags
    Stone pitching put in this summer

    Striding Edge 

    Striding Edge suffers a great deal of erosion along the sides of the crest of the ridge so it would be impolite for 'Fix The Fells' to not go and visit and chip away at the on going work up there.  


    Erosion Scar








    Landscaped out! 

    Goats Hause

    To end the fell season we decided to do a bit of work in our own back yard and our focus turned to Goats Hause which is the col between Coniston Old man and Dow Crag. This project was funded by EOCA or the European Outdoor Conservation Association, you may have seen/heard coverage of this earlier in the year on the TV or Wireless! There is a huge amount of damage to the vegetation in this area so we have been using the usual techniques to reduce this.

    The Fix The Fells lengthsmen hard at work landscaping


    The above drain finished is now being blended in with its surroundings. Below we are trying to encourage people to use a path line that will erode less quickly


    After
    Before

























    I

    In the photo above, the path is relatively thin however it was three times as wide before the area to the left of the path was landscaped out. 


    It's not a bad place to have lunch either......




    So that's it for the fells for 2016 and next year's work plan is already in the pipeline, for now we're all having a well deserved break by getting on with some good old fashioned hard work down in the lowlands. 

    Thanks for reading


  • The walled garden pond...St. Catherine's.

    09:00 06 November 2016
    By Ben Knipe, Dave Almond, Dave Jackson, James Archer, Neil Winder, Roland Wicksteed

    Academy ranger Bruna Remesso, with volunteer help, has done a great deal of work in the walled garden at St Catherine's this year.
    One of the jobs she undertook was to reinstate the old pond. It was dug out afresh and a new pond liner was put in place.
    Stone dredged out of Troutbeck, after Storm Desmond, was selected to be used for landscaping the area around the pond. 
    A volunteer group from Windermere School, who help out on most Thursday afternoons on various tasks, began landscaping work with Bruna.
    A busy scene unfolds!
    Smaller stones were put in buckets and...
    ...carried over to the pond.
    looking promising.
    Really taking shape.
    Almost done. Approximately two and a half tons of stone was used for the pond.
    The large rounds of wood floating  in the pond are alder. They have had large holes drilled in them as refuge sites for frogs and newts; hopefully they will colonise the pond.
    The Windermere School group with Bruna on the right.
    Julie King, Director of student pathways and careers at Windermere School, quite literally threw herself into the task. She gave pond dipping a whole new meaning and demonstrated just how deep the pond was!
  • Claife Viewing Station - Facelift

    15:10 04 November 2016
    By Clair Payne, Craig Hutchinson, Glenn Bailey, Ian Griffiths, John Atkinson, John Moffat, Luke Sherwen, Matthew Allmark, Nick Petrie, Paul Farrington, Paul Kear , Richard Tanner, Rob Clarke, Sam Stalker, Sarah Anderson, Stuart Graham



    Looking Spectacular

    As we get older we all need a little extra help to keep ourselves  looking spectacular !


    Looking hairy


     For me it’s  my increasingly  hairy ears, nose  and eyebrows that require just that little bit more time spent in front of a magnifying mirror with the scissors and Remington nasal hair trimmer to ensure that I don’t start looking like the lovechild of Brian Blessed and  Chewbacca  !  



    Must See Destination




    At 238 years old Claife Viewing Station is no different and  needs a little love and attention to keep it looking as it should . The Viewing Station was once a ‘must see’ destination  for the very earliest tourists to the Lake District, when their traditional ‘Grand Tour ‘ of Europe was too dangerous an undertaking  due to the French Revolution .


    The Station,  a now ruined building, lay  hidden in the woods for decades until it   re-opened to the public  last year after a £1/2 million pound  facelift and we continue  with the care by restoring the landscape around the Viewing Station itself,  so that the present day experience is as close to the original as possible.


    Thrilling Dramatic Wild !




    This week as part of our landscaping works, we have been planting 750 heather plants with the assistance of a couple of volunteer groups. We have also removed young self sown birch trees and in the near future will be removing more cherry laurel to expose more of the bare rock faces around the Station. All of this is being done to create a more thrilling , dramatic ’wild’ experience for our visitors.




    Come and  see for yourselves , Claife Viewing Station is open all year round  as is the Courtyard café. Located on the West shore of Lake Windermere, Far Sawrey,Ambleside, Cumbria.


    https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/claife-viewing-station-and-windermere-west-shore