Frozen Stickle Tarn

Sounds like a dessert. But no. Still, a fantastic place to be…

March 6 5d4 pano mini.jpg


Jet lag as a result of the Hawaii-UK return leg was immense. More than a week later, I’m still struggling with it. Randomly wanting to take a nap in the middle of the afternoon, “naps” lasting 7 or 8 hours, awake from 3am. Yeah, awesome. However, Hawaii was totally worth the jet lag.


I arrived back in the UK a day before the “Beast from the East” arrived. Siberian style cold air, snow, ice, wind causing chaos. Luckily for me, I managed to time the travel so that I arrived in the Lake District in the north western corner of England before the main part of the storm dumped its snow all over the place. Had I arrived a day later, I’d be sitting in a random cheap hotel off the M6 motorway for a few days waiting for the roads to be cleared of snow.


The Airbnb flat I booked in Ambleside was a great place to bunker down whilst the weather calmed down. Various people in various places spent nights in cars and trains so I was pretty happy sitting in front of a fire, whisky in hand, watching the news on TV describe the chaos.


After a few days, the thaw set in and I was able to get out and about. The main target for me was getting some hiking in and hopefully getting a few shots in the process. Stickle Tarn is a place I’ve visited in the past, but it’s been almost twenty years since I’ve ventured to the Lake District (spoiler alert, not much has changed!). Stickle Tarn was my main target but I was pretty relaxed about making it up the hike.


To the side of the trail, is a stream which flows down from the tarn. I was hoping that there would be a sufficient thawing out to boost the various small waterfalls. I slowly made my way up the path, stopping from time to time to shoot some timelapse (and regain control of my breathing). The video below was the resulting output.


Eventually, the path winds its way slightly away from the stream and waterfalls, and you end up scrambling over the rocks as you gain the high point of the hike and reach the tarn. The path started to get snowy, slushy, and a bit slippery in places. Nothing too sketchy but care did need to be taken to minimize sliding around. The tarn itself was frozen over.


I love this location. I’ve yet to make it up here in summer, as the larger fells have attracted me during the warmer seasons. However, a frozen Stickle Tarn is a stunning location and definitely recommended. Definitely planning to get back here in summer…