Ennerdale offers up great opportunities for walking, with over 30 miles of public rights of way, forest roads and tracks. My forest image was captured at dawn, while following the Smithy Beck trail. The forest was bathed in magical golden rays of light, that appeared to be dancing among the trees like the spirits of untamed nature.
- The Smithy Beck Trail starts and finishes at Bowness Knott car park. The walk is ideal for families but is not suitable for most pushchairs as the path is narrow in places.
The Tale Of The Forest
Mighty emperor is the forest,
High dominion does he wield,
And a thousand races prosper
‘Neath the shelter of his shield.
The moon, the sun and Lucifer
Do round his kingdom ever sphere;
While lords and ladies of his court
Are of the noble race of deer.
Hares, his heralds and his postmen,
Carry rapidly his mails;
Birds his orchestra composing,
Springs that tell him thousand tales.
Midst the flowers that grow in shadow
By the streams and in the grass,
Bees in golden clouds are swarming,
Ants in mighty armies pass …
Come, let us again be children
In the woods we loved of yore
So that life, and luck, and loving
Seem a game and nothing more.
For I feel that mother nature
All her wisdom did employ
But to raise you over living
And of life to make your toy.
You and I away shall wander
Quite alone where no one goes,
And we’ll lie beside the water
Where the flowering lime-tree grows.
As we slumber, on our bodies
Will the lime its petals lay,
While in sleep, sweet distant bagpipes
We will hear some shepherd play.
Hear so much, and closer clinging,
Heart to heart in lover’s wise,
Hear the emperor call his council
And his ministers advise.
Through the silver spreading branches
Will the moon the stream enlace,
And around us slowly gather
Courtiers of many a race.
Horses proud, as white as wave crests,
Many-branching horned stags,
Bulls with stars upon their fore heads,
Chamois from the mountain crags.
And the lime-tree they will question
Who we are; and stand and wonder,
While our host will softly answer
Parting wide his boughs asunder:
“Look, o look how they are dreamingMihai Eminescu
Dreams that in the forest grow;
Like the children of some legend
Do they love each other so”.