Almost as soon as we set off I knew I was a lot less fit than I had foolishly imagined myself to be. Working in and around the Cumbrian fells of the Lake District I seem to be under some sort of delusion that simply looking at those hills could make me fit … Having decided to go for a ‘proper’ walk this Bank Holiday weekend, a friend and I set off up Latterbarrow.  For those of you familiar with this particular l’al fell you’ll know it’s hardly in the same league as Scafell Pike or Helvellyn, but for a part-time hiker like me, it was more than big enough.

I’d recently been given a pair of walking boots to try out so this was their first real test.  Before Christmas I had hurt my foot (falling down stairs and no, there was no alcohol involved, honest) and have not been able to do much walking since.  So now I needed something that would give my left foot some support and not be too clumpy to weigh me down.  Must admit, their name was rather daunting for a wimpy walker like me – the Hi-Tec Altitude IV WPi NT Enviro Boots – did that mean I HAD to climb to high altitude? The 4th version? What was WPi?!  However, I did know what the NT stood for = National Trust, because they have collaborated with Hi-Tec to produce this “environmentally considered walking boot.”  Now. I’ll leave you to read all about “their naturally dyed reduced chrome leather uppers, recycled metal steel shanks and a durable recycled rubber content outsole”; suffice to say that they look good, feel very strong & supportive and certainly helped me make it to the top of that fell.

Latterbarrow overlooking Windermere Lake District, Cumbria

Latterbarrow overlooking Windermere

So, with plenty of stops en route to ‘admire the view’ we finally made it.  Stretched out on the mossy, rocky ground, rather breathless, with the Lake District fells all around, the views were so worth the effort.  Supremely gorgeous, laid out below us on one side was Windermere, sprawling sinuously out from Ambleside towards Bowness with toy yachts and dingies drifting about in the spring breeze. In the other direction the mighty Langdales swooped and crinkled away in the distance, with the cluster of quaint grey and white temptations that is Hawskead village snuggled cosily below.  A young lad and his parents came wandering up to the large cairn and posed for their celebratory photo before settling down to an impromptu picnic, no doubt feeling, as we did, that the effort to make it that far, definitely deserved a ham sandwich and a relaxing few minutes to enjoy the moment …

Latterbarrow cairn