Some of you probably imagine the west coast of Cumbria as being bathed in perpetual sunshine - if you have not been here yourself, that is. We made the journey on Good Friday: eight solid hours of traffic congestion, roadworks and queuing. Saturday was a lovely walking day: spring sunshine taking the chill off, but we were looking for a relaxed day so it was the Lorton circuit for us. Baby lambs all the way; upland sheep lamb much later than field sheep in Essex.
Easter Sunday, however, presented a different face. Sea mist had rolled in and thickened into fog. It was strange to see the weather map showing the whole country enjoying fine weather and a perfectly round patch of fog over the Cumbrian coast. We drove up the coast to walk on the beach, since it was not actually raining. Beyond the murk we could hear seabirds calling and the eerie sound of hooves, before two riders cantered up through the edge of the surf.
Monday continued the same: a damp sea-fog where we were. We drove inland, started our walk around Sale Fell in fog, turned a corner and there the fog gave way to a perfectly sunny day. The gorse was blazing away in the sunshine. This bank was positively bouncing with sky-larks: they would rise, twittering manically then scoot back into the gorse in a way we have never seen before.
During the week we managed tea on the terrace of the Stackyard tearoom no fewer than three times. (I'm sounding like Maria Lucas describing her visit to Rosings.) To sit out here enjoying the stupendous views while eating a toasted hot cross bun with rum butter ranks pretty high for us.
Highly recommended for those of you planning visits this summer.
The terrace looks out on a little farm park, where we delighted to see this peacock strutting his stuff, facing down the opposition of a game chicken.
Pretty amazing, eh?