Drawing 140: Brothers Water
Direction of view: NNE
Notes: The viewpoint is just a few yards from the path along the west side of Brothers Water, and close to where a wall comes down to the lake edge. Very little has changed.
This view appears in Lakeland Mountain Drawings (412), Fellwanderer (page 40), and Wainwright in Lakeland (page 11). The photograph from which this sketch was drawn is in the County Archives at Kendal, reference WDAW/4/1/1/2/18. The reflections in Brothers Water are actually clearer in the sketch than they are in the photo, and are very cleverly portrayed by Wainwright.
Comments: I first took this picture on slide film on 10th April 1978, prior to a walk over High Hartsop Dodd, Little Hart Crag, Red Screes and Middle Dodd. There was snow on the fells, and clear visibility, making for magnificent views (image 1). My next shot (image 2) was on 10th July 1982, prior to a walk over Fairfield and St Sunday Crag with Peter Messenger (see Drawing 41 for an account of that day).
On 1st July 2014 I was on my way home from Rheged after seeing the film “Life of a Mountain – Scafell Pike”. It was a beautiful afternoon, so I parked the car and set out on the short walk to get this photo for my digital project. The light was excellent, and it would be difficult to get a better picture of this scene in summer conditions: image 3. Very few other people were around, and all was tranquil and beautiful.
The story goes that the name “Brothers Water” originates in two brothers being drowned there in a skating accident. The 19th century guidebook writer Harriet Martineau goes further, saying that there were two separate drowning incidents, both times when one brother was trying to save the other. Wainwright himself refers to “the drowning of two brothers in skating accidents”.