Aira Force, arboretum, beck, cascade, fells, fungi, Lake District, lichen, liverwort, moss, plants, pool, Ullswater, waterfall, wish tree
We had a slow start to our first day in the Lake District. We were tired after our long journey of the day before and the weather wasn’t good enough that morning to tempt us out early. By midday however, the rain had stopped and the clouds had lifted and we thought we would have a short excursion to Ullswater and look at Aira Force.
Ullswater is the second largest lake in the Lake District and last Easter we took a boat trip on it. I wrote about our Lakes holiday last year but unfortunately that post has gone missing. I have been sent copies of my missing posts by my friend Heather (thank-you Heather!) but haven’t yet copied them back into my blog. (Unfortunately, all your wonderful comments have gone for good 😦 ).
Aira Force is a waterfall situated in woodland on the northern shore of the lake and is now in the care of the National Trust.
After a short drive we found the National Trust car park and then started to walk up through woodland towards the force.
This area was once owned by the Howard family who still live in Greystoke Castle near by. In the 18th century they renovated an old hunting lodge (a former pele tower) and created a sporting estate around it. They landscaped the area around the force, planting over half a million native and non-native trees. They made paths and bridges through the woodland and used the place as a pleasure garden.
The main force drops about 70′ from below a footbridge.
…and liverwort too.
I saw so many different plants and flowers, grasses and sedges, many of which I have included in posts from home so haven’t included them here, but some I still have no idea what they are despite researching for some time.
This is a ‘Wish Tree’. People hammer coins into it with a stone from the site and hope that their wish comes true. We didn’t have any wishes and anyway, I was more interested in the fungi growing on the log.
I saw another fungus growing at the base of a tree.
Near to the car park we found the Arboretum that the Howard family had planted in 1846. They planted over 200 specimen conifers (firs, pines, spruces and cedars) from all over the world. Apparently there is a Sitka Spruce (Picea sitchensis) that is now 118′ tall though I didn’t see it. What I did see was a Monkey Puzzle tree (Araucaria araucana) that looked like it’s bark was sliding down like a baggy sock.
I took a couple of pictures of the fells as we returned to the car.
Thanks for visiting!