Simon Akam

Photography: Wordsworth's Lake District

In May 2010 I traveled to the English Lake District on an assignment for the Washington Post. My aim was to revisit the area using the original text of poet William Wordsworth's 'Guide to the Lakes,' which was first published 200 years before my trip in 1810. My piece and photographs ran as the cover story of the Post's travel section in June 2010. The piece is available here and the newspaper's slideshow of my images is here.

Woodland, fields and low-lying cloud are reflected in the calm waters of Wastwater in the English Lake District. Wastwater is the deepest lake in England. (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)
  
Daffodils in flower outside the church in Seathwaite in the Duddon Valley in the English Lake District. The church was rebuilt in its present form in the 1870s. (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)
  
A gate in a dry-stone wall in the Duddon Valley in the English Lake District. Built without mortar, dry-stone walls are ubiquitous in the area. (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)
     
  
A postbox built into a road bridge over the River Duddon in the English Lake District. The letters GR stand for 'George Rex.' (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)
  
The path along Yewdale valley between Coniston and Tilberthwaite in the English Lake District. William Wordsworth recommends this excursion in his 1810 'Guide to the Lakes.' (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)
  
A farmstead in the Yewdale Valley in the English Lake District. Sheep farming has shaped the landscape of the area. (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)
     
  
A view down onto Lake Windermere in the English Lake District from above the ferry station on the western shore. Windermere is the largest natural lake in England. (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)
  
Passengers talk to a crewmember during an evening cruise on Lake Windermere in the English Lake District. The lake is 11 miles long. (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)
  
The Union Jack flag flies from the bow of a launch on Lake Windermere. The Union Jack is the flag of the United Kingdom. (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)
     
  
Yachts moored at the head of Lake Windermere in the English Lake District. Beside sailing boats motor craft also operate on the lake. (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)
  
Visitors gather outside Dove Cottage in Grasmere. Before Wordsworth lived there the building served as an inn. (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)
  
The house at Rydal Mount. Wordsworth designed the layout of the gardens. (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)
     
  
Looking down through the gardens at Rydal Mount towards Rydal Water. The lake is both drained and replenished by the River Brathay. (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)
  
A patchwork of fields in the Langdale valley in the English Lake District. Great Langdale is a u-shaped valley formed by glaciers. (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)
  
Blea Tarn viewed from the road between Great Langdale and Little Langdale in the English Lake District. There are brown trout, perch and pike in the tarn. (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)
     
  
Thirlmere reservoir in the English Lake District. The lake was created in the late nineteenth century. (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)
  
A old house in the village of Applethwaite close to the town on Keswick in the English Lake District.  Above the village the flanks of Skiddaw, the fourth highest mountain in England, rise into the cloud. (Simon Akam for the Washington Post)