Spend week from Sunday 29 January 2023 in Coniston, volunteering at the Youth Hostel. Opportunities for walking are restricted to the evenings, mostly in twilight or darkness. It feels like the village is taking a breath and rediscovering its normalcy outside of the tourist season. Most of the folk around appear to be local, doing their bits and pieces of business.

Courtesy of the train-strikes the hostel sorts me an extra night, but this has to be at Ambleside, as Coniston is full. On Friday evening I’m able to walk up to Sweden Bridge in the darkness, using just the light reflected from the clouds. It’s cool, but not chilly, and I’m seemingly on my own on the gloomy track. Following day I retrace my steps and then go on upto Hart Crag high above Rydal. The forecast bad weather holds off, so the views are splendid, although there’s a fearsome cold southerly blowing. I’m lucky the wind only carries a few spots of rain: getting drenched would be seriously unpleasant in the cold. I drop down to Grasmere, but my plan to get to the ferry over to Bowness has to be amended: it’s further than I thought, and I really don’t want to miss my train home. So instead I walk/hike/jog/run to Ambleside, where I get the bus.

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