button to main menu  Otley's Guide 1823 (5th edn 1834)

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Page 130:-
is 1250 feet above the first house in the vale, and here a magnificent view presents itself: the small valley of Wasdale Head appearing as if sunk below the general level, and the sea at a distance seeming to rise in the horizon. The lake of Wast Water is not yet in sight, being hid by a projecting mountain on the left, called Lingmell. A steep zigzag track now descends on the side of Gable, down which the horses may be led; as it is neither quite safe nor agreeable to ride. Crags of the most grotesque forms overlook the road, and the side of the hill is profusely strewed with stones, in some of which garnets may be found imbedded: and in crossing the stream which issues between Gable and Kirkfell, a rock of reddish granite may be seen, where it is denudated by the waters on both sides of the road.
  Wasdale Head

Wasdale Head comprises a level area of 400 acres of land, divided by stone walls into small irregular fields, which have been cleared with great industry and labour; as appears from the enormous heaps of stones, piled up from the surplus after completing the inclosures. Here six or seven families have their Chapel, of a size proportionate to the number of inhabitants, and in a style according with the situation; and what Mr. Gray formerly said of Grasmere, may with equal propriety be applied to this vale: 'Not a single red tile, no gentleman's flaring house, or garden walls, break in upon the repose of this little unsuspected paradise; but all is peace, rusticity, and happy poverty, in its neatest, most becoming attire.'
gazetteer links
button -- "Gable" -- Great Gable
button -- St Olaf's Church
button -- "Sty Head Pass" -- Sty Head
button -- (track, Seathwaaite to Wasdale Head)
button -- Wasdale Head
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