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Walking and cycling from home in Cumbria and Lancashire – the Cicerone team share their views

4 minute read

Walking and cycling from home provides a welcome relief, and a chance to enjoy the sights and sounds of spring. It's easy to discover new routes and views, even if you think you know your local area well. We're very fortunate to live in such a beautiful area, but even taking exercise in a city can allow you to discover new sights, sounds and routes to enjoy.

Sarah – I'm really lucky to live on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales, so it's fairly easy to take a daily walk or bike ride locally without coming into contact with anyone. There have been some lovely sunrises recently, so I've taken the opportunity a few times to get out at first light. I've also been exploring the quiet roads and lanes on my bike, and have been into some lovely hidden valleys that are right on our doorstep.

Caroline – This was taken near the Dales Way on a very tranquil stretch of footpath on my walk. It's my favourite place to rest and listen to the stream, the lambs bleating, birds singing loudly and the breeze. Nothing else.

Clare – The weather is beautiful and it’s hard to believe that we are experiencing a pandemic. I cannot believe the beauty on my daily walk. I’m trying to alternate my exercise regime between biking and walking. Today was usual my walk took me to Sizergh Castle. The blossom is out. These young calves are looking very chilled and as though butter wouldn’t melt in their mouths. Do not be fooled. They think they are horses and kept on running towards me. I will go another way tomorrow!

Andrea – I’ve been restricted to walks or runs in the countryside around my village, but with woods, hill and coastline to choose from, it’s not really much of a hardship. The best bit about living on the coast is the expansive views and sense of a wider horizon – a great antidote to lockdown claustrophobia.

Distant views of the Howgills
Distant views of the Howgills from Bendrigg Lodge

Sian – I have to admit, I don’t go out for a walk every day. Although there are some lovely places to go from my house, I’ve been lacking a bit of motivation to follow the same old loops. My usual tactic is to go and ‘do’ something – go for a walk to see the pink moon, go for a walk to find the deer, go for a walk to watch the bats, go for a walk to take some photos for a Cicerone article – all reasons to get up, leave the hammock, put on my boots and go for the same walks I’ve been doing for the last fortnight. The most productive ‘to do’ walk has been an early-morning stroll to pick wild garlic. It was followed by a messy hour in the kitchen armed with a soup blender, a bag of ancient ground almonds and an offcut of some extra-mature cheddar, and the end result was a jar of surprisingly good home-made pesto.

Natalie – Every time I set foot outside, I am reminded how lucky I am to live where I do. There are so many wonderful footpaths and quiet country lanes around Ulverston: I can choose between the hills or the coast, moorland, woodland or the canal. I've been going out for a short walk every afternoon. The weather has been glorious and it's lovely to see all the signs of spring: butterflies, bumble bees, cute lambs and woodland carpets of anemones, celandines and bluebells. I vary my routes and occasionally, as a special treat, I take the lane past one of the local farms to admire their cuddly alpacas.

Joe – My partner and I take it in turns over who gets to go for a run. Runs are usually over Scout Scar above Kendal, and because I get out first thing in the morning I usually see a wonderful sunrise lighting up the Lake District!
If it's not my day to run then I walk the puppy. We usually explore the woods and golf course above town. I recently watched a film about a guy who ran every single street in San Francisco, and I'm making plans for Tryfan and I to do the same in Kendal! When not walking, she 'helps' me in the back yard.

Lesley – Living in a small village between the Yorkshire Dales and the Lake District, we have country lanes to explore on bike rides, and countless options for walks, even if they only last the recommended hour. The views of the countryside towards the Lake District and the Howgills are always gorgeous, the gorse bushes brightening the views, giving off their soft scent of vanilla, and the M6 motorway is all but silent, apart from occasional lorries!

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