The A591 is considered the most beautiful highway in England. And, indeed, this Cumbrian motorway winds through some of the most spectacular scenery to be had in the Lake District National Park. From Bowness-on-Windermere in the South Central Lakes where we are at Blenheim Lodge, it takes drivers and passengers past huge expanses of lakes and high fells, traverses close by or through quaint Lakeland villages and towns, and performs a vital role in providing a viable route between the Northern and Southern Lakes throughout the seasons. The latter function is the main reason why the A591 is such an important transport link both for locals and visitors alike.
When Storm Desmond struck in December 2015, a chunk of the A591 collapsed just north of Grasmere, thereby severing this important link between the Northern and Southern Lakes. Anyone wishing to travel between the Northern and Southern Lakes now had two options: either to make a possibly perilous journey (potentially because of heavy snow or ice) over the Kirkstone Pass or to take to the M6 motorway to make the trip, which is not a particularly scenic journey, I hasten to add.
We ourselves drove over the Kirkstone Pass whenever we wanted to go to Keswick from our guest house in Bowness-on-Windermere after Storm Desmond struck. It was an exciting experience BUT . . . look out for walkers trekking along the very windy narrow road with not a care in the world; mad drivers that zoom past in the gloaming regardless of the steep-sided cliffs that seem to drop down, down and down forever; cracks, potholes, and crumbling rock or road that either the storm or previous neglect had caused. Needless to say, we were very careful, particularly because the weather forecast was for rain turning into sleet and snow on the return journey which took place under a canopy of black impenetrable sky.
The A591 is a more forgiving road. It is less windy, there are no steep drops to contemplate as one tootles along, and the actual motorway is generally impeccably well-maintained. More, it provided, until the advent of Storm Desmond, an easy means of commute between the Northern and Southern Lakes. Thus, it is with much happy anticipation that locals, in particular, as well as visitors are a looking forward to its repair. The hope is that the A591 will be fully functional by the end of May 2016 as reported on our local news tonight. Meanwhile, a lesser route will open between the Northern and Southern Lakes on 16th February if all goes as planned. (http://www.itv.com/news/border/topic/a591/)
The opening of the lesser road will coincide well with the half-term February break season. Public bus transport will be available to take people between Grasmere and Keswick via Dunmail Raise, a travel route of olden days. ‘A public bus service connecting Keswick and Grasmere via Thirlmere is planned to start on Tuesday 16 February using the temporary road being built to bypass “The Gap” on Dunmail Raise.’ (http://www.cumbria.gov.uk/news/2016/february/04_02_2016-161949.asp)
Of course, come rain or shine, snow or sleet, fair weather or foul, the Lake District National Park is forever beautiful and always open to visitors throughout the year. Whether a bridge or road closes or not, there are always ways around such closures which will take one to wherever one wants to visit. Accommodation providers such as ourselves are also always keen to share this amazing National Park with our guests. So, if you are still looking for a LAST MINUTE DISCOUNTED BREAK, do give us a call or send us an email to book a room. Tariffs at our AA 4-Star B&B start from just £39.60 per person per night when staying in an en-suite room with Lake and fell views – not forgetting a home cooked breakfast comprising hearty local produce! Remember: book direct in order to take advantage of such offers. Our contact details are at the bottom of this post as is a link to our website.
Blenheim Lodge . . . panoramic Lake views, peace and tranquillity, nestled against acres of beautiful fields and woodlands, in the heart of the English Lake District National Park.’
Visit our website: https://www.blenheim-lodge.com
Telephone: 015394 43440