L a k e  D i s t r i c t  B r e a k

15th - 22nd October 2005

Missing the hills? Feel like an adventure but not the journey to the Lake District and back? Why, simply sit back and let me do the hard work! For added effect, line up a pint of Jennings Cumberland Ale and spray your face occasionally with one of those plant water misting thingumibobs. Click the pics to go large.

Saturday   weather: warm and sunny

We've chosen a self-catering cottage on the North Western shore of Ullswater, which puts the Northern and Central fells within easy reach. Skip a big bunch of driving and here we are, early evening.

The view from the bottom of the garden

I might just stay here until it gets dark and a full moon comes out

That was easy!

Spud and Bill arrive. Good. Now which way is the beer?

Sunday   weather: warm and sunny

Time for an introductory walk, so let's head out to monkey around near neighbours Great Mell Fell (537m) and Gowbarrow Fell (481m).

Hail, guardian sheep of the woods

Mushroom city

Going up, here endeth the woods

But it's all a bit hazy on top.
Let's head over to Gowbarrow.

It's definitely autumn

Let's go troops!

Gowbarrow summit.
Hey everybody! Come and check out how good I look!

I spy a silhouette opportunity

Thanks to Bill for capturing the silly poses


Monday   weather: dry, part cloudy

Yesterday was fun, but as it's monday morning, there's not an office in sight and the weather's holding, let's climb something bigger. How about Blencathra (868m) via Hall's Fell Ridge? It looks interesting on the map...

Yep, that's definitely bigger

Approaching the interesting bits now

No sudden gusts of wind please!

The top. Plenty of wind here.

Looking back down the way up...

... to Hall's Fell Ridge

Looking South - rocky

Looking North towards the back of Skiddaw - peaty (to use technical terms)

Tuesday   weather: dry, high cloud

The others are having a rest day, but as it's still not raining, a big solo walk is in order I feel. So from Glenridding, time for a go at St Sunday Crag (841m) and Fairfield (873m).

Over into Grisedale, and we're going to go up that first

But taking the path is just what they'd expect us to do.
So straight up the side we go (steeper than it looks).

Looking North East to Ullswater. Also a nice place to find 2 big blisters.

GCSE geographers - spot the corrie

The top of St Sunday Crag. Next stop, that dark menacing lump on the right hand side.

Looking back down Cofa Pike towards where we came from

One of the many views from Fairfield summit.
I'm knackered, let's just go downhill now.

The stream from that corrie (Nethermost Cove)

St Sunday Crag straight up, Fairfield behind to the right

Lanty's Tarn, aaaaah. But sod that, need beer and chips!

Wednesday   weather: rain, clearing
And lo it did raineth upon man, and man did invent Gore-Tex (tm), and the rain was good. So with it being all cloudy we'll climb a small one for breakfast - Little Mell Fell (505m). Those feeling like it can then go on for a loop around Glenridding Dodd (442m) and Sheffield Pike (675m).

Little Mell Fell: not very interesting

Especially in the clouds. Gee up!

Above Glenridding there's more to see

On Glenridding Dodd. Sunshine in the distance but rain over here.

Time to head up into the clouds again. Sheffield Pike is the lump on the right.

Ullswater from one of Sheffield Pike's pikes

The top. Hoorah! It's in the clouds. Boo!

Glenridding valley. There's a pub down there.

So let's go down there too

Thursday   weather: showers
Rest day. Because you're worth it (tm). We'll take the Ullswater passenger ferry down the lake and back. You will too, because it's my web page and you can't change it. Nerrr.

Cap'n Spud, ha haaaargh me hearties

Our secret base, in the trees on the right.
From here on, merely our base.

A man has a right not to shave during a week off

Not a great rummy hand

We were up there yesterday (Dodd left Pike right)

The look that says "we're not doing any more walking, but you are, fool!"

It wasn't quite as cold as it looks

If only the rest of the country was like this

Friday   weather: rain, becoming persistent

Spud and Bill have left to socialise in Suffolk, so we're on our own. How about a low-level wander along the lake, up and over Glencoyne valley (595m), and back down next to Aira Beck and its waterfalls. They should be good in the rain.

Sheep, lake

Cows, lake. It's quiet today, ok?

Bring on the water, for I am ready

Ping! Third floor for expired bracken and menswear

Thank you for using HeavyRainPreventer v1.5
Your trial period has now expired...

The stream, err I mean path, down to the pub.
It only gets wetter.

The Royal at Dockray. They'd rather you have a fillet parcel au jus
than meat pie and gravy, but recommended nevertheless

Yeah, that's what we came for

The always impressive Aira Force

Saturday   weather: rain, turning patchy

Time to leave the cottage, it's chucking it down, and we haven't done the local big one yet. Well it's now or never, so the hills it is. A Solo Rebel Assault of Helvellyn (950m) via Striding Edge - straight up, straight down, no messing, no prisoners.

The cloud is low, but thankfully the rain has eased off

To minimise time in cloud and faffing with map and compass
we'll take the longer but lower valley path to Red Tarn

Welcome to Striding Edge. GCSE geographers - spot the arete.
Also, try not to fall off.

Red Tarn is down one side, Nethermost Cove the other
(tuesdays walk, pay attention at the back)

See the chap on top of the big crag.
I came that way too. Not sure if there's an easier route.

One final big climb and voila, the Helvellyn summit shelter

Back down at Red Tarn, and it's an easy walk back from here

Well that's that. I'd like to stay longer and explore more, but some people want me back in front of a computer on monday morning. On the plus side, it'll pay for the next time.

  L i n k s

Lake District National Park
We stayed at Beauthorn Cottage