Drawing 23: High Stile from Gatesgarth

Direction of view: W

Notes: This view is from the road, looking over the wall.

This scene also appears on page High Stile 2 in The Western Fells, and page 140 of Fellwalking with a Camera.  This latter is clearly the photograph from which the sketch was drawn.

The trees are sometimes known as The Sentinels, though I don’t believe that name was ever used by Wainwright.

Comments: I took this picture  on slide film on 12th September 1981 (image 1), an excursion with Peter Messenger when we got some sketches around Buttermere (this and 63) before heading over Honister Pass to Seatoller (228) and an ascent of Castle Crag (with further sketches!).  Of the four trees shown by AW, one (that leaning at a most pronounced angle) had disappeared, but otherwise little was changed.

I took the picture for the digital project on 17th July 2017 (image 2), and it was the last of 13 sketches photographed that day, 12 of which I had not taken digitally before.  A rather hazy image, but I have kept it for the contrast with the third picture, which was taken on 22nd June 2018 (image 3).  This was taken on a glorious day of hunting down sketch viewpoints around the Buttermere Valley, others photographed that day being  210, 385, 191, 322 and 91.

It’s interesting to note that the well known Lakeland photographer Joseph Hardman was familiar with this scene, and photographed it several times.  His pictures show people camping, picnicking and generally enjoying themselves on the lake shore (image 4), which is now barred to public access. Hardman was active in Lakeland between the 1930s and 1960s. I have worked as a volunteer at Kendal Archives, helping to catalogue their collection of his photographs.  As Wainwright notes, this is “one of several viewpoints associated with the early camera studies of the Abraham Brothers of Keswick”.  So quite a classic.