Beryl Does Cumbria
I held back for 24 hours as the forecast turned grim for yesterday. Today was still looking good - until this morning, that is! You can never rely on Yorkshire weather, let alone Cumbrian!
I had an awesome night's sleep and woke up with great excitement. I wasn't sure what the weather was doing until I stepped out of the van because the sun wasn't quite up and the windows were misty but at least I knew it wasn't raining on the roof! Once I'd set off from somewhere near Grange-over-Sands, I realised how still it was and wondered if, after all that rain and a chilly night, there might be some mist around.
Sure enough, on the little craggy roadside views, miniature clouds were clinging to the trees as I approached the first hill. I knew from the write-up of this second ascent that I'd get views of the southern tip of Windermere on the way up - but i couldn't have hoped for more than this!
I'd found myself a very pretty tree already but I'd decided that if it was stunning, up here, I'd stop three-quarters of the way up the hill to take a photo.
No, wait! Wait! I didn't!
I enjoyed the view as I pedalled on by - at that point, there were only wisps of cloud over the water and the light hadn't yet hit the lake. There was also one last incline so I couldn't face stopping… until I was over the brow, that is, and Photo Demon kicked in, sending me right back down 200 yards to this lovely vantage point. As I stopped to eat a bar and take a few photos, I realised the cloud was building up so hung around a little longer to watch it.
Now, I'm fairly certain, and you may just have to believe me on this one - that just right of the sailing boats, that's the top of the rainbow of a giant brocken spectre from a clump of trees on the horizon behind. I know you aren't supposed to be able to see someone else's brocken spectre - but you can if you're standing in the very same one.
This marked the last of the sunshine until I was a few miles from the van so it was a truly lucky moment. At one point, a huge black cloud was looming too close for comfort so I decided to try a little more than potter for the last 5 miles and happily cycled into blue sky.
It's been a real treat to be in cycling with a Lakeland feel for a change and a mighty luxury to have Beryl to return back to for tea, lunch and a comfortable drive home - to rain!