Lake District (06:13)
The British mountain landscape changes dramatically with the seasons. At Millbeck Farm, 38,000 pregnant ewes return to valleys to lamb, a key annual marker for the area. Herdwick sheep are the livelihood of the community.
Spring: Color Returns (03:01)
Leaves grow, flowers blossom, and wildlife begin breeding cycles. River and creeks fill with water from snow melt. Dippers utilize nest sites by streams and hunt for caddis fly larvae.
Spring: Tourists Return (02:29)
The Lake District receives 16,000,000 visitors annually. The growing season is short and Hilltop Farm's gardener urgently plants. The estate was home to Beatrix Potter, who used "Peter Rabbit" fortunes to buy farmland and preserve the area's culture.
June Activities (03:14)
Windermere Lake hosts Europe's largest outdoor swimming event. At Millbeck Farm, Herdwicks are sent to the Fells for fresh grass, the first time lambs walk the mountains. Shepherds use hefting methods to bring the sheep home.
Traditional Boundaries (05:20)
Many kilometers of dry stone walls are maintained by Millbeck Farm's David Birkett. They are patched with the same techniques and stones used hundreds of years ago. They create ecosystems for slugs and jumping spiders.
July Activities (06:15)
Lake District shepherds take dogs up the Fells to herd sheep. At Millbeck, 300 sheep undergo sheering every day. Annual clippings prevent wool from becoming overly weighted.
Beatrix Potter's Garden (03:51)
The garden draws thousands of tourists daily; estate gardeners maintain her designs. Birkett is an experienced climber; he responds to a call regarding a stranded sheep.
August Activities (03:59)
Tourist season peaks at the Lake District; Millbeck Farm receives 1,000 visitors an hour. Windermere Lake offers pleasure cruises; steamers ferry 10,000 people daily. Locals attend the Rusland Show.
September Botany (03:15)
Touch Me Not Balsam covers the forest floor; nightly, leaves go limp, exuding excess moisture. Flowers bloom, petals drop, and seed pods fall, providing food for the Netted Carpet Moth Caterpillar.
October Activities (06:16)
Wax Cap Mushrooms grow in multiple colors on the Fells, aided by Herdwick sheep. Red Deer stags call, signaling rutting. Wildlife prepares for winter. Lake District residents observe centuries old autumn traditions.
December Activities (04:10)
Snowstorms transform the Lake District landscape. Everyday, a researcher climbs Helvellyn to measure conditions and assess avalanche risks. Windermere ferries sail before Christmas; residents gather for holiday celebrations.
Completing Yearly Cycle (02:31)
The new year begins and the thaw follows; wildlife emerges and tourists are anticipated. Sheep return from the Fells to lamb. The seasons impact plant, animal, and human life in the Lake District.
Credits: The Restless Year (2016) (00:31)
Credits: The Restless Year (2016)
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