Friday Films: Backpacking in the Lake District & Helvellyn

Here are two short trailers for new films from Terry Abraham. First up, Backpacking in the Lake District. This follows backpacker extraordinaire Chris Townsend on a spectacular high level lap around Borrowdale his sandals. As you do.

He's been on epic walks all over the world, most famously for months at a time in the wilds of North America. But backpacking expert and prolific outdoor writer Chris Townsend still rates the Lake District as one of his favourite places. His choice of route here shows Lakeland at its varied and beautiful best. 

Terry Abraham's previous films The Cairngorms in Winter (review here) and Life of a Mountain: Scafell Pike (and here) won critical acclaim. Not least from us.

Backpacking in the Lake District is shot in his trademark style, with plenty of lush, lingering scenery shots, cloud inversions and sun rises.

The hope, says Chris Townsend, is to encourage more people to try multi-day walking and wild camping for themselves. And if this film doesn't do it, nothing will. 

While we're on the subject of Lake District films, here's yet another new one from Terry Abraham: Helvellyn with Mark Richards.

In this one Terry joins guidebook author and Lakeland expert Mark Richards as he walks three of his favourite routes on the Helvellyn massif. There's the gorgeous (and slightly scrambly) east ridge of Nethermost Pike, one of the best kept of fellwalking secrets; an ascent past Brownrigg Well, the highest spring in the Lakes and not a spot many people seem to know about; and naturally, a grand finale on the circuit of Striding and Swirral Edges, possibly the best mile or two of walking in England.

We've had a sneak preview of the whole film, and Mark's deep knowledge of the range is evident from the many interesting snippets he offers on local history and place names. Who knew that Helvellyn has its origins in ancient Welsh? Or that Dollywagon comes from the Norse for 'elevated giant'?

It's a shame that so much of the film was shot in dull weather, though some spectacular aerial footage of the Red Tarn cove makes up for the rest. Helvellyn leaves you wondering one thing above all else: just how did they manage to catch the summit in daylight, minus the usual hordes?   


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