Through the Viewfinder
And What Alice Found There
Things have been pretty quiet on here lately, partly because I’ve been ill with the dreaded cold that’s going around so I haven’t been out hiking much, and partly because I’ve recently moved house and have only just got WiFi set up! But I’m back at last! I’m starting off with just a short update this week, introducing my new neighbourhood – the lovely village of Tebay!
I’ve always imagined myself living in a village – considering my main hobbies involve hiking and landscape photography, living somewhere rural and surrounded by countryside fits into my outdoorsy lifestyle perfectly. I’ve never wanted to live in a city. I enjoy going for a short weekend city breaks from time to time but I could never deal with all the traffic, crowds, and tall buildings all over the place – it’s just not me! I’ve lived my life until now in the market town of Kendal (with a few odd years living in Huddersfield for uni) which is about as busy as I could go with a place to live. Kendal has a good mix with shops, cafes and restaurants in the centre plus good bars and pubs for the evenings, but just a few minutes’ drive out of the town takes you into beautiful countryside with lovely local walks on offer such as the Helm and Scout Scar. Although a part of me will be slightly sad to finally leave the town where I was born, I’m very excited to do something different and get stuck into village life!
I’ve got to know the area around Tebay fairly well over the last 8 years as Greg and his family live nearby, so it’s not a totally new experience for me but there’s definitely lots more to explore around my new house. Some people might think that having a motorway and a train line close to Tebay would mean it would be noisy and unpleasant, but in fact when you’re in the village you can’t see or hear either of them and it certainly feels like the quiet, rural community that you’d expect from village life. There’s also a good pub (the Cross Keys) a post office, two churches, playing fields, and possibly the best amenity of all – a free to use tennis court! Very handy considering over the summer Greg and I took up the sport – we’ll be heading down there for a match as soon as we get chance! There’s also the famous Tebay services just down the road which aren’t like your regular service stations at all! Selling a whole host of local produce, offering a decent restaurant for hot meals, plus the resident runner ducks hopping about in the grounds make it a great place to go and shop for something special. The smaller shop at the truck stop also serves as a handy local store for the necessities if you run out.
Alongside all this, there’s a wealth of walks all around that I can’t wait to explore! I’ve been up Tebay Fell already, and just recently discovered a nice little route straight from our doorstep, part way up the fell to a perfectly positioned bench – a great lookout spot! I’m also dying to do some hiking in the Howgills so that will be on our list of things to do shortly I hope, plus there’s loads of nice country lanes and footpaths to explore for some easy low-level walks. Not to mention, my favourite secret wild swimming spot is hidden away here in the Lune Valley so I’ll be heading back there next summer!
Overall, my experience of life in Tebay is so far a good one. I’ve only been here for a few weeks so far but surely that’s a good sign! When winter fully kicks in I know that commuting to work in Windermere will get considerably more difficult (Tebay seems to get snow before anywhere else in Cumbria!) but that’s just something I’ll have to deal with when the time comes! With my upcoming trip to Australia, New Zealand & Fiji I’m hoping we miss a good chunk of the worst wintery weather anyway, but you never know – the snow seems to fall later and later in the year now!
Hopefully over the next few weeks when we’re a bit more organised at home we’ll set out on some local walks, and also get back into doing the Wainwrights. Watch this space for more adventures!