This is perhaps the area I know the best in the Lake District, with living only a short 10 minute drive from this beautiful place. I consider myself to be extemely fortunate to be in this position, as photographers from far and wide flock to this place all year round to try and capture something special here.
Wastwater itself is the epitome of all those adjectives I used earlier, and then some. With its close proximity to the coast, the wind will often whip off the sea and turn the lake into something more resembling a seascape, which is often when it’s at its best. The lake is surrounded by the highest ground in England, the Scafell massif, and also the rather grand looking fells of Yewbarrow and Great Gable.
What to shoot?
The first place people tend to go to is the lake, starting at the area immediately surrrounding the main layby’s simply because it provides easy access to the shoreline. Shooting this area is a great choice if the water is relatively low, revealing many of the large rocks that scatter the shoreline, providing plenty of foreground interest (see image right). The one issue you have to be careful of however is the island in the mid-distance when can encroach on many compositions. I’d tend to avoid this area if the water levels are really high, where many of the rocks then become submerged and hidden.
The second place I would perhaps look at is much further down the lake, about 500m before you get to Overbeck car park. There is a small pull in which is often empty, leaving a short walk down to a small secluded bay where there is a rather nice fence which leads into the water. This can be shot from either side of the fence, and is a great option as an alternative to higher up the lake near the layby’s if the water level is high. This spot also offers probably a better view of the Scafells which are partially hidden from further up the lake.