The Old Man of Coniston

  • Friday 17th May 2019
  • The Lake District

    Our final hike of the week was that to the Old Man of Coniston which is a most notable feature in the Coniston Village.

    Coniston is another great spot for exploring the fells, mountains, water and forests.

    This village is rooted in a history of quarrying and mining for copper.

    The Old Man of Coniston is situated in the Tilberthwaite Slate quarries. Some of these mines date back to Jacobean times and were revitalised in approximately 1859.  This was supposedly meant to be an interesting walk with lots of industrial archaeology.

    Coniston Old Man is the highest peak in the Furness Fells at 803 meters in height and is a popular destination.

    Climbing the Old Man of Coniston felt strange as at parts you are clearly climbing through old quarry workings.

    I wasn’t sure if I was fascinated by the industrial archaeology or saddened by the desecration on this natural landscape.

    We were undertaking the Circular Route which had us climbing up through the quarry on to the summit of ‘ The Old Man’.

    The walk drops down to Low Water before heading to the summit.

    From the summit we had the most amazing panoramic views of all the surrounding hills and fells.

    We saw over to the Scafell group where we had been the other day and as far as the Isle of Man.

    We walked across the broad ridge to the top of Swirl How and then we scrambled down the ridge from the summit before zig-zagging down the trail to Levers Water before rejoining our path at the bottom of the quarry.  Then we reluctantly returned to the parking area.

    The Old Man if Coniston had been an amazing walk.  I found the later side of the walk much more scenic, greener and enjoyable than the drier, grey mining side.

6 Comments Add yours

  1. Helena Brogan says:

    That looked like a tough walk Mary, although seems worth it for the views. Your Lake District blog has made me want to go back there again. Don’t think I’d manage all those climbs thoughπŸ€”. Expect you’re both back at work (for a rest maybe)? Thanks for sharing your weeks walking with us….it’s lovely to see all those views and lovely little villages particularly in the sunshine. Second best to being there. Wonder what next weekends plans are? Xx

    PS. I’ll be able to send you some photos of mountains when we go on our trip to Switzerland on 1st June. We’ll be travelling around by train……don’t think you’ll see me doing much climbing thoughπŸ˜€πŸ˜€

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    1. It wasn’t so bad to be honest with you once you were up πŸ˜‚….it was ages ago we were last in The Lakes and after visiting again we asked ourselves why we had left it so long….it’s so lovely….I actually do think you’d manage some of those walks…some of the paths are so well made and stuff and there’s no rush ‘walk your own walk’ so you could take all day…we saw many people older than us out hiking which was great to see and at the top of Skafell Pike…they were just taking their time and enjoying their hike…I’m telling you…you’d love it….and those pictures are nothing compared to the real thing…the feeling I get I cannot put into words but it feels good for sure! I do love all the little villages also, so quaint! I’m sure the weekend will bring something as were now on the countdown to Elbrus πŸ™ˆ 6 weeks today!!! So it’s serious training now 😲!
      Looking forward to your pictures of Switzerland as we would very much like to hike there…so please send πŸ’™…the train would be a great way travelling there…take your hiking boots just incase πŸ˜‰πŸ˜πŸ˜˜

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  2. Helena Brogan says:

    I thought you had been doing serious training up to now?πŸ€”I have to be honest with you I’d never heard of this mountain called Elbrus….now I see it’s one of the highest in Europe….looks tough going though. Now you’ve got me reading all about it..wondering which route you’ll take etc etc. It’ll be fascinating following your blog when you’re there. Meanwhile I keep checking the weather in Switzerland..hoping we’re not going to get a lot of rain to spoil the views. Xx

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    1. Lol….I suppose we have but I’m feeling slight pressure now if I’m being honest πŸ™ˆπŸ˜¬…it is the highest mountain in Europe (higher than Mount Blanc)…and very tough going…with altitude πŸ˜•…good to hear you’ve been reading up on it…when we first bought into the idea I read about it daily but some of the stuff I read was giving me doubts so I stopped reading about it πŸ™ˆ. .if you can find any tips please share πŸ˜‚…so yes there are two basic approaches North and South…if you’ve read about these approaches I would love to hear your guess on what side you think we have chosen, considering our ‘sillyness’ as some would say πŸ™ˆπŸ˜‚πŸ˜‰…I’ve heard though from the side were going I’ll get signal so I can send out an SOS if required πŸ˜πŸ™„πŸ˜©…and you can sort out the rescue since you’ve been ‘swatting’ it πŸ˜‰… So Switzerland in June?? Should be ok you’d think…that’s the thing the weather plays such an important part when your visiting scenic places…were like that…were basically happy with clear skies to see views…fingers crossed you’ll be lucky….when we were in Chamonix we literally visited Switzerland for a day and for that brief moment of what we saw we would love to go back…..I’ve heard it’s Auntie Alice’s favourite place πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‰β€οΈ

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  3. Alice Reid says:

    You have been lucky with the weather haven’t you 😎😎. That sign post reminded me of those in Switzerland. Each walk is. colour codedto let you know the easy or difficult walks and what equipment is required also the distance to each destination. I watched Edie the. Other night so must go back to your blog To compare. The story line was quite weak but I enjoyed the background story as Sheila Hancock admitted she didn’t expect to do the whole lot but the Directors persuaded her. They did helicopter her down and some of the crew admitted that they just kept going as they didn’t want to lose face im front of her. By the way don’t worry about your remark on my bossiness . Elizabeth bougHt me s mug a few years ago with SHE WHO MUST BE OBEYED emblazoned on it and I think Aunties Lena and Theresa thought I was a bit bossy when they were younger. Thanks for all your blogs and also the info they contain. Where are you off to next weekend? Xx

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    1. We were very lucky indeed….the locals told us often πŸ˜‚….to be honest with you they probably could have been doing their signposts better then like Switzerland as when we were out on the hills they were very few and far between…sometimes nothing! Now this doesn’t bother us as we always carry a map/compass etc but the amount of people that stopped us in the middle of nowhere asking do you know how to get to Skafell Pike, do you know how to get to etc etc πŸ™ˆ was unbelievable!!! So Edie…we were the same ..not too impressed by the story but AMAZING scenery…. beautifully captured! So we went up the other side to where Sheila went…I think the bit she was in the boat was made up as from her side it was a path in….a very long path which would have taken her hours…and we guessed a helicopter would be involved so I’m glad you’ve enlightened us to that….BUT…I will give her her due….it was still really steep so she did amazingly well….and great achievement…just wait till that hip of yours is fixed πŸ€ΈπŸ’ƒπŸƒπŸžοΈ….lol glad you didn’t take offence at my comment πŸ˜‚πŸ™ˆ you know I joke but I like that mug from Elizabeth….I need to get my mum one πŸ˜‚πŸ˜²….suppose ‘the big sister’ can easily be classed as the bossy one…I’m sure I felt the same growing up!! We’ll probably be planning something if the boys give us permission πŸ˜πŸ™„πŸ˜© x

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