Drawing 358: High Dam, Finsthwaite
Direction of view: N
Notes: Approaching from the LDNPA car park at Finsthwaite, turn left upon reaching the dam, cross the dam and walk on along the path for about 150 yards, whereupon this scene appears. The trees drawn by Wainwright are unmistakeably still there, and the scene has changed remarkably little. Can be taken at any time of year.
Comments: I took image 1 on 29th November 1980, on a day out with Peter Messenger. It was a clear sunny day, with the ground frozen hard. Other sketches taken on the day were 266, 216, 363 and 185.
This is a lovely view, which I photographed for the digital project on a visit with Sheelagh Hughes Hallett on 23rd December 2012 (image 2). We parked at the LDNPA car park, and walked up to High Dam, getting the picture of Low Dam en route. It was a lovely winter’s day, in contrast to much recent very wet weather, and gentle winter sunlight lit the scene. There were several other walkers around, but it was by no means crowded – Wainwright notes that visitors here are “a discerning few”. We continued by walking round High Dam before returning to Finsthwaite and visiting the church.
This scene also appears on page 152 of Wainwright in Lakeland, on page 77 of The Outlying Fells, and as sketch 31 in A Furness Sketchbook, a drawing of identical content but brighter feel, as the dark shadows have been lightened, and the dark reeds “downsized”!