Friday, 25 April 2014

Something Different

After a few short rides the other week I was keen to do something a bit different for a change so headed over to the Lakes to grab a few more Wainwrights.

I'd last done some fell walking over a year ago and had been stuck on 199 fells since then. One thing that has been a constant for some time is that the Northern Fells have taken up the majority of those fells left to do, usually they accounted for over half of the remainder.

With seven fells yet to do in the group this was still the case. As seems inevitable they were spread out in to three groups, two of these groups formed the eastern most fells with a group of three and one of two. A fine target for the day.

After a leisurely start I parked up in Mungrisedale at around 10am with quite a breeze blowing. Wainwright's recommended route up Bowscale Fell was at the other end of the village so a bit of road walking later and it's a steep climb up through the gorse. As I got higher on the ridge, the wind got stronger and stronger, by the time I was on the summit it was comedy "lean in to the wind at 45degs" strength. It was also pretty cold - so much for the nice spring day promised by the forecast.

The walk to Bannerdale Knotts is pretty uneventful being just a broad depression across boggy ground. Somehow I got my line wrong in dropping off from the summit and ended up traipsing over tussocks to gain the bridge over the beck. Though there were lots of people on Blencathra, the fells I was on were fairly quiet - I met maybe a dozen people in total. The last of the group and the lowest was Souther Fell, just a long broad ridge to the summit then a steep descent back down to Mungrisedale with a long detour to avoid a field.

Bannerdale Knotts from Souther Fell. I think it's a currick in the foreground.

I was fed up with the wind so rather than head for the next two fells just to the North I decided to head over to Thirlmere and climb Raven Crag. I'm sure I'd been to the top of this before (the summit is very close to the top of the crag of the same name) but hadn't noted it. It's a completely different walk to the northern fells - enclosed rather than open, short and steep rather than long and gradual. As I approached the summit area a couple were heading down. A quick chat, they were Wainwright bagging like myself, and the father says: "I follow you on Twitter"! Really quite bizarre, rather embarrassingly I didn't recognise him nor did I ask his name.

The summit of Raven Crag, Brown Cove Crags just below the clouds.

It's a long while since I've suffered from DOMS but being totally unused to fell walking I had sore legs for the next three days. Oh well, just 11 tops to go.

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