Keswick, Cumbria: The comparatively diminutive stature is more than made up for by the zeal with which its residents practise the religions of the outdoors

The car hums along the dual carriageway, a warm, dark cocoon for two slumbering children after the stimulus of nursery. The sodium glow from the lights of Keswick slides into view and my eye is drawn to the encircling peaks. I trace the muscular outline of Skiddaw and find what I’m looking for, pinpricks of light dancing downward on a huge black triangular canvas.

Nestled in a cradle of enclosing hills, Keswick is most certainly a “mountain” town in the same sense as Chamonix or Banff. The comparatively diminutive stature of the Lakeland fells is more than made up for by the zeal with which its residents practise the religions of the outdoors – walking, running, riding, climbing, flying, paddling or sliding.

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