Tuesday, 29 September 2020

Turning Cooler

 


This week has seen a sudden shift in the temperatures and the days (and nights) have been much cooler here. The garden is beginning to look rather tired now and most of the flowers are past their best, aside form the dahlias and the last of the orange sunflowers. These flowered a little later than the rest and seem much more appropriate for this time of year. I must remember to sow them a little later next season. The garden has served us well this year but it will soon be time to pack away the outdoor furniture and give everything a good tidy to prepare for the winter months ahead.

I'm still settling into my new daily routine but I'm pleased to say it's all beginning to come together quite nicely. Weekdays tend to be when I'm at my busiest and are pretty much taken over with work and the school run. I also try to squeeze in the  household chores whenever I can, in order to leave the weekends as free as possible for more favourable pastimes.


Last weekend, while the weather was still lovely and warm, we climbed Graystones and Broom Fell, near Whinlatter Forest. The original plan was to walk up Broom Fell first but, having turned off the track a little earlier than we should have, we ended up completing the walk the opposite way round : )
Our route initially took us along a forest track through the trees before opening up onto the open fellside. The clear day meant we had some beautiful views, over the sea to the west and Scotland to the north.

Once we reached the top we turned back on ourselves to walk along the ridge across to Broom Fell. Although we could clearly see the cairn in the distance, for a while it seemed as though we weren't getting any closer, but soon the summit was within reach and we were greeted with the most stunning view of the Skiddaw range infront of us with a glimpse of Bassenthwaite Lake below.



We enjoyed a picnic lunch at the summit before taking the more direct path down the fell which ran alongside a ruined wall.


The descent from Broom Fell, looking towards Graystones. The bracken is giving the fellside a wonderful autumn hue.



On the way back to the car park we took a short detour alongside Aiken Beck. There is a small waterfall here which we will visit at a future date. A winter walk to look forward to on a frosty day. I can see myself enjoying a hot chocolate whilst sitting on that bench.


As the week continued, the temperatures fell and the warmth of the sunshine was replaced with a distinct autumn chill. The central heating has been switching on earlier in the evening and I've been needing to wear my gloves on the morning commute. On Saturday we donned our wellies and went for a walk in the woods. The trees are beginning to shed their leaves and the ground was covered in acorns, crunching underfoot as we walked. The hedgerows are still providing an abundance of elderberries and fortunately I had a container with me, so we returned home with it full to the brim. They're packed away in the freezer now and I'll be using them along with some blackberries to make more compote as the weeks go by.


Here's some I made during the week. At this time of year I love to stir a large spoonful into my porridge at breakfast time, but it's just as delicious on yoghurt and I imagine it would be very tasty on a rice pudding as well : )

This is how I make mine.

Approximately 900g of fruit (I used 525g blackberries and 375g elderberries).
450g granulated sugar.
The juice of 1 lemon.
½ teaspoon of ground cloves.

Put all the fruit into a large pan. At this point I like to squish the fruit a little bit using a  potato masher but you don't have to. Add the sugar, lemon juice and ground clove. Bring to the boil and simmer for approximately 15 minutes, stirring all the time. Pour into sterilized jars. This made just over three jars.







On Sunday morning it was incredibly cold, although it was a beautiful sunny and clear day, and just perfect for what I had in mind. We drove to the top of Kirkstone Pass, parked up opposite the inn and climbed Red Screes, dropping down to bag the summit of Middle Dodd while we were there. The walk itself was short and very steep but the views were simply breathtaking and we could see for miles. It made me think, I've been able to spend a lot of time outdoors this year and I'm really feeling the benefit to both my mental and physical wellbeing. As we head deeper into autumn I realise this precious time will become less frequent and it will be even more important to make the most of all that this season has to offer.

J. X









62 comments:

  1. A great post, those views are wonderful.
    You are certainly making the most of your time and these Autumn Days.

    All the best Jan

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Jan. I spend a lot of my days trying to play catch-up, so I really appreciate the weekends when I can enjoy some time outdoors. X

      Delete
  2. Your putting me to shame with all your fell walking. Love the sunflower. Have seen lots around recently, they are so cheery! X

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I really enjoy it, Shazza. On a bright, clear day, there's nothing better than sitting on a summit and enjoying the view while eating a slightly squashed sandwich :)

      Delete
  3. I have been thinking along the same lines as your last sentence and feel quite depressed by the thought of the gloomy days ahead. Must make the most of the current pleasant temperatures and sunny days!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm not looking forward to dark and gloomy winter days. I don't mind the cold, it's the wind and rain I dislike. X

      Delete
  4. I love how you go out walking in weather that would make me huddle in front of the heater! But, you have such lovely vistas to enjoy when you do go out walking.

    Thank you for sharing your fruit compote recipe. It sounds delicious.

    Hope you have a good week and a wonderful fall season, Jules.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was a very chilly morning morning to start with but it soon became warm in the sunshine and once the wind dropped it was very pleasant indeed. I felt a bit overdressed in my woolly hat and gloves. X

      Delete
  5. Your compote looks delicious - I have never thought of using elderberries in this way.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have previously made elderberry syrup but the compote is much more simple (and less messy) to make. X

      Delete
  6. The change in the weather and temperatures has been dramatic and a tad unbelievable. One minute I'm in a costume sunbathing the next, hat scarf and gloves! The gales brought down so many branches and acorns earlier in the week it's made the everything look unkempt and sad. You are very lucky to live in an area which is so beautiful. Essex is just so Flat!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There has been a sudden change in the temperature this last week but I wonder if we'll see another warm spell before the arrival of the frosty weather. X

      Delete
  7. What a very lovely part of the world. Your photos are stunning.
    xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Joy. I realise how very fortunate I am to live here. X

      Delete
  8. It looks like you had some lovely weather, your photos are gorgeous as always.
    Your compote looks lovely. Being a total townie I don't think I'd recognise an elderberry, there were some berries growing at the bottom of the garden a few weeks ago I wasn't familiar with but I left them for the birds not wanting to poison us.
    I'm impressed with the weather since we returned from Greece, I was sunbathing on Sunday and yesterday. xxx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Vix. I'm going to catch up with your holiday news as soon as I can. Elderberries are very straightforward to identify and I've got plenty of favourite spots where I go foraging, although, typically the best looking ones are usually just out of reach. X

      Delete
  9. Your compote recipe sound delicious. Lovely photos of your stunning scenery. I often do walks the reverse way round; somehow it makes the same journey very different. B x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Barbara. The 'navigational error' wasn't much of an issue on this occasion. The views were stunning in either direction. X

      Delete
  10. What gorgeous photos.

    My son has been doing a lot of mountain biking around Whinlatter just recently. I think his mid-life crisis is all about cycling on very expensive mountain bikes rather than buying a red Ferrari :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Sue.
      As far as a mid-life crisis goes, I've encountered far worse ;)

      Delete
  11. Such beautiful scenery, it's no wonder you want to make the most of every day you're able to get out there. I'm hoping that we have a mild autumn, it makes the transition from summer all the more bearable for me, it's the rainy grey days like today which I really don't like.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's been wet and miserable here today, as well. Give me cold and bright any day. X

      Delete
  12. Wow, what a beautiful couple of walks you took us on. You are so blessed surrounded by such beauty. The changing seasons can clearly be seen with the amazing hues of the leaves. The compote looked delicious.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm looking forward to seeing the changing colours of the landscape as we head further in to autumn. X

      Delete
  13. Another of your absolutely wonderful tours. Your view from the top of Broom Fell reminded me of a very early experience on the first visit I can remember to The Lakes when I was a young teenager. We climbed near the Langdales and when we arrived at the top I could see out of the Lake District down to the surrounding plains and the coast. For some reason it disappointed me and I never forgot that feeling that I wasn't all-enveloped by the hills. I have always loved The Lakes and being in them and am glad that most of my walking was done before it became so crowded. Just as my parents were glad that they did their early waking in the 20s and 30s when even cars there were rare. Knowing that it is unlikely that I shall ever be a'top a mountain in The Lakes again makes your posts and photos even more special to me. Thank you. By the way I do enjoy the flowers and other things too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for your lovely words, Graham. It makes me so happy to know how much you enjoy my posts. In my humble opinion, there's not a lot beats standing on a summit, looking out at the surrounding fells and countryside, and yes, it does seem a little strange when that landscape flattens quite abruptly.
      As for the crowds, they are quite easily avoided by using some careful planning ;)

      Delete
  14. The beauty and comfort of fall is all around us now. I so enjoy your photos as they give me a feeing of peace. I can certainly use that today.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm looking forward to more beautiful autumn days such as these. X

      Delete
  15. Those nature scenes are truly beautiful, I'm so glad autumn is just right around the corner seeing it's my favorite season.

    At around 4:00 this morning I sat out in the porch and could hear the winds speak to me. It was a very peaceful morning.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I used to dread this time of year but I'm pleased to say I love autumn now. It's the most beautiful season. X

      Delete
  16. You have some wonderful walks to enjoy and your photos are wonderful. It certainly has turned cold here too and we have our heating on.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Eileen. I am certainly spoiled for choice around here, there are plenty of places to walk. X

      Delete
  17. More lovely photos Jules. I've enjoyed the cheerful sunflowers in our garden this year and will definitely plant more. We've not been to the van for a couple of weeks so I must remember to collect some elderberries when I'm there this weekend. I'm ready to ease into Autumn now and looking forward cosy evenings. I'm reading a series of detective books at the moment that are set in the Lake District and some of the names mentioned I think ooh Jules has blogged about that lol. Hope you're all keeping well. xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Suzanne. Sunflowers are wonderful aren't they. I love the yellow ones best, they're so evocative of summer, but the orange ones are just lovely at this time of year. I've already started my cosy evenings, there's something so comforting about drawing the curtains and settling in for the night. I even lit a candle this evening. It's pouring with rain outside, so I have Mog for company now that Lily has gone to bed :) X

      Delete
  18. Oh yes, a noticible drop in temperature. I love Autumn but right now we're just at that slightly in between time before the leaves turn. It's so lovely when they do and I like it when they fall and are crisp underfoot

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ah, yes. Those crisp autumn days when there has been a light frost overnight are just beautiful. X

      Delete
  19. Meant to say, the Kirkstone Pass is awesome. I drove it once and flat a bit scared but wow, what views

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There are some stunning views from the pass. It's a beautiful drive during the summer months but it's frequently shut off in winter due to the weather. X

      Delete
  20. The view is so beautiful. I would never want to leave.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I find myself stopping regularly just to take in the scenery. X

      Delete
  21. Beautiful photos, which are welcome because this is the first year we have not been to the Lakes for many years. We stay usually in Brathewaite, and formerly Great Broughton.
    Unless it is very rainy, try and keep going out, it will be so good for you.
    Bev

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Beverley. Hopefully you can look forward to visiting the Lakes again next year. Braithwaite is lovely and is the starting point for many popular walks. X

      Delete
  22. I love the views from the tops of the fells, especially the last one with Lily, it's stunning :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There are time that I can't get over just how beautiful it looks, Eunice. You can see for miles up on the fells. X

      Delete
  23. Such beautiful country, Jules. Very different to where I live in sub-tropical Australia. We are into our Spring now and have had a few really hot days already as a taste of the Summer to come. I love the colour of elderberry syrups. MegXx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is a beautiful part of the country, Meg, and I feel so very fortunate to live here. Our spring seems a long way off and summer feels like a distant memory to me now but I hope we enjoy some more bright sunny days before the darkness of winter sets in.
      When I stir the compote into my porridge it turns a vivid purple colour :) X

      Delete
  24. What absolutely gorgeous views you have! England is just beautiful and I really hope to visit there some day. That last picture is so sweet of Lily.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I really hope you get to visit, Julia. X

      Delete
  25. Oh, that looks incredible, Jules. I love the photos, especially the last one. What amazing nature you have there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Stephenie. The mountains are incredible aren't they. I never tire of those views. X

      Delete
  26. Hello Jules, I have just found your blog through Vix's. Stunning photos! I grew up in the North West (now live in Cornwall)and have many happy memories of weekends and school trips up in the Lake District - orienteering, jumping in lakes, rolling down hills! I love your sunflower too. I tried to grow some chocolatey ones this year but the mutant slugs got them all! Lulu x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for visiting, Lulu. And for leaving a comment. It's always nice when people introduce themselves and it's a wonderful way for me to discover new blogs (although, I'm sorry to say I've been incredibly bad at catching up with them all lately).
      Cornwall is beautiful. It must be such a joy to live there, with all that gorgeous countryside and never being very far from the sea.
      I'm loving the idea of chocolatey sunflowers :)

      Delete
  27. Amazing scenery Jules enjoy those walks while you can, the weather has been so wet here these past few days and I'm dreading the cold months. I have to say your fruit compote looks amazing, I could make it without the elderberries I would think because I haven't got any I left too late but next year I must remember to pick some and try this out. xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't mind the cold so much, it's the wet windy days I'm not really a fan of. The compote is delicious, especially with the ground cloves. It tastes just as good without the elderberries. X

      Delete
  28. Thank you, for beautiful views, for the recipe and for reminding me that I am not spending enough time outdoors. I was able to be outside a lot during the spring and summer and I planned to build it into my routine once the school term began but I have failed miserably. Must do better. Take care. x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's quite easy to spend time outdoors when it's warm and sunny but less so when the weather is cold and damp, and now that I am working during the week there is much less opportunity. X

      Delete
  29. What gorgeous views around you! Such a pretty sunflower, seems perfect for autumn. Found your blog from Afternoon Coffee and Evening Tea. Think I'll be back for more of your lovely photos.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for stopping by, Jean. I'll be along to visit your blog shortly. X

      Delete
  30. I know I’ve said it before, Jules, but you live in a beautiful part of England! I absolutely love our Dartmoor, but the Fells are huge compared to our Tors. The temperature is definitely dropping now and although the weather is decidedly dodgy at times, I’m looking forward to some wintery beach walks :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm so used to the fells now that whenever I travel further afield I'm often taken aback at how different the landscape looks :)
      Wintry beach walks are always great to look forward to. X

      Delete
  31. Just beautiful Jules...simply beautiful! x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Jackie. It's clear to see why I love walking in the fells. X

      Delete