Thursday 26 October 2023

Many dodds

So with the attention turning to Poppy completing Wainwrights, we set off on a longesh walk from the house to get a few more.  The weather forecast was similar to the day before, but it ended up raining for longer and we all got a bit cold and wet.

Difficulty: 6.2
Walkers: Tim, Caroline, Poppy (13), Piper (4)
10:06, 0.0km 0h00 0m, Start (339)
12:17, 7.7km 2h11 564m, Great Dodd (857, Wainwright, Hewitt)
12:43, 9.2km 2h37 587m, Watson's Dodd (789, Wainwright)
13:09, 10.8km 3h03 662m, Stybarrow Dodd (843, Wainwright, Hewitt)
13:31, 12.0km 3h24 696m, Green Side (White Stones-Green Side) (795, Hewitt)
13:50, 13.3km 3h44 722m, Hart Side (756, Wainwright)
16:58, 21.2km 6h52 802m, End (349)

We opted for the anti-clockwise route so that we'd come back through Dockray in the afternoon, perhaps to visit the pub.

It started off with a fairly quick roadway, until we started to climb up on the path running parallel to Groove Beck.

Big sections of Matterdale Common were a little damp underfoot.

And finally to Great Dodd.  We'd long since gone into the cloud, and the rain had set in.

At Watson's Dodd we got a brief view down and it started to brighten up a little, but quickly set back into full cloud and rain again.

Stybarrow Dodd, after we walked passed it and had to turn back up the hill.  Poppy was map reading and this was definately testing her map reading skills.

And onto Green Side, a Hewitt that none of us had been to before.  Clearly not a Wainwright, since the view was terrible.

And finally to Hart Side.  Myself, Caroline and Piper had been there before two years before where it was very windy and very rainy, so this was comparatively glorious.  After dropping down some height the rain stopped, we finally ate some lunch and Poppy put on another layer.

Coming out of the cloud we finally got a view over Ullswater.  We'd walked along this path two years before with no view at all, so this was pretty awesome.

View looking back towards Ullswater and Glenridding Dodd on the right.

Caroline was behind purely as she'd been taking pictures, not because she was walking slowly. After getting through the sheep field into Dockray (with Piper coping pretty well with the sheep) we did make it to the pub for some very well deserved cake and a pint.

Wednesday 25 October 2023

And finally... Skiddaw

Despite the broken bones in my shoulder and the inflamed tendons in my knee and the rain forecast this was a walk that was going to happen.

Difficulty: 5.7
Walkers: Tim, Caroline, Poppy (13), Piper (4)
10:20, 0.0km 0h00 0m, Start (291)
11:51, 4.5km 1h30 512m, Lonscale Fell (715, Hewitt, Wainwright)
12:36, 6.7km 2h15 721m, Skiddaw Little Man (865, Wainwright, Hewitt)
13:16, 8.3km 2h55 866m, Skiddaw (931, Wainwright, Hewitt)
14:08, 9.5km 3h47 909m, Carl Side (746, Wainwright, Hewitt)
16:31, 14.9km 6h11 1100m, End (307)

We parked at the Latrigg carpark, arriving just early enough to get a space on the road, about three cars from the carpark.  A little earlier would have been better, but that's close enough for me.

Cloud at around 500m meant a clear start, but this was about the last good view we got on the way up.  The path going up was very wide and well built, so fairly straightforward.  Given the rain forecast we inevitably passed some people who didn't look dressed for the conditions, and one lad who we met half way up who asked us which way to Skiddaw.   I really hope they all enjoyed their walks and were safe, although I try and leave less to chance. 

Lonscale Fell, standing at the Wainwright, looking back to the cairn, the views were astounding.  As we walked back we passed another family heading here, clearly bagging Wainwrights on a cloudy day.

Skiddaw Little Man.  Up uptil this point it hadn't actually been raining, although all the moisture from the cloud was condensing on us, so we were pretty soaked already.

However on the final ascent to Skiddaw it started to rain, and the last 500m along the ridge was pretty windy as well.   Still, I like to feel that it would have been a let down if it was warm with a good view.

We celebrated at the top with champagne - sorry for not bringing up the glasses, the table, the table cloth, chairs, etc.

The steep path down towards Carl Side was great - very steep, wet, and all slate scree, so progress was very slow.   For a change this week I did get to have Piper so that Caroline could concentrate on getting down the path.  I just made sure that she didn't pull me over, since landing on a broken shoulder wasn't in my plan for the day.  The final pay off was that it stopped raining and we got a view back - here's Carl Side on the left.

At the top of Carl Side, where we finished the champagne.

Heading further down the hill we got the occasional view over Derwent Water.

White Stones, where we stopped for a break to finish lunch before heading further down.

Down towards Millbeck, just before the zig zag path that Caroline swears we've been down before.

Monday 23 October 2023

One step closer...

With two planned walks needed before we get the full set of Wainwrights, this was a clear winner.  We had a later start than the day before, and everyone was feeling a bit weary, so a low shorter walk was called for.

Difficulty: 3.0
Walkers: Tim, Caroline, Isabelle (21), Poppy (13), Piper (4)
11:32, 0.0km 0h00 0m, Start (145)
12:49, 4.5km 1h17 274m, Troutbeck Tongue (364, Wainwright)
14:53, 11.0km 3h20 322m, End (162)

We parked in the same small lay-by on the main road next to a barn, just opposite the gate through to the field opposite to start the path north.  I'm not sure there's anywhere closer to park, but the walk up the path then along Ing Lane is quite pretty and fairly fast walking. 

Up ahead is Ing Bridge, which was great for poohsticks. This was our first view of the magnificent Troutbeck Tongue, standing proud in the valley floor.  Well, apart from the view we got from high up driving over Kirkstone pass. 

At the well marked cairn which has an awesome view of Windermere in the distance, which is not the Wainwright.

Here's the view from the actual Wainwright, the view from here north is better, but this view south isn't quite as nice to my eyes.  We were thinking of eating lunch here, but it was a bit windy, so we decided to head down for shelter.  Rather than turning back (our original plan) we took the gentler descent option to keep heading north first.  My left knee was in quite a bit of pain, and steep descents were not in order. 

No sheep up here, so we were able to let Piper off lead for a bit and pratice some recall.  This is the view north, looking at Caudale Moor and Thornthwaite Crag either side of the dip straight ahead.

Turning back south to pick up the valley path.  My left knee hurting quite a lot more than my broken shoulder, so may need to take it easy for a day or two if we want to get up Skiddaw and complete all the Wainwrights this holiday.

Sunday 22 October 2023


First walk of a new holiday, with only 6 more Wainwrights to get the full set for myself and Caroline.  This walk got the first two out of the way, plus getting the third that we had not revisited since our honeymoon.  I was nursing two broken bones in my shoulder, so couldn't take a rusksack and definitely no scrambling.  Two years earlier we'd not been able to get to Sheffield Pike, and we'd never quite made it up Catstycam either.

Difficulty: 5.8
Walkers: Tim, Caroline, Isabelle (21), Evie (15), Poppy (13), Piper
10:35, 0.0km 0h00 0m, Start (138)
12:02, 2.8km 1h27 520m, Sheffield Pike (675, Wainwright, Hewitt)
14:41, 8.8km 4h06 1089m, Catstye Cam (890, Wainwright, Hewitt)
15:48, 11.5km 5h13 1115m, Birkhouse Moor (718, Wainwright)
17:24, 15.1km 6h49 1125m, End (106)

We parked in Glenridding, and set off with the promised sunshine not quite evident.

Climbed up the path towards Glenridding Dodd, and was fairly quickly rewarded with some great views.

Top of Sheffield Pike.  Several bands of light rain had come across on the ascent, mixed with sunshine, so everyone had to stop multiple times to put on or take off layers.

The encouraging sign was that Catstycam was still visible, so the cloud level was just keeping Helvellyn hidden but our goal for the day promised to had good views.

Lunch stop, after coming down the valley, crossing over Glenridding Beck, and walking up to where Red Tarn Beck joins.  The plan was to take off waterproofs before starting the next climb up, but as we got through our lunch it started to rain again, so we resigned ourselves to getting a bit hot.

The rain eased off on the way up, and despite Caroline going off ahead and missing the turn off the path. we got to the top of Catstycam.  Great views from the top, and it was fairly busy with other people.

From the top of Catstycam, looking to Striding Edge.  Given I had broken bones and a slightly dodgy knee there wasn't any chance of going around the two edges and Helvellyn, that will have to wait for another day.

Down at Red Tarn, we let Piper off lead for a paddle and a swim.  After the third rock that Caroline threw in, she wised up and stopping swimming out after them.

Back up the path towards Birkhouse Moor.

Poppy at Birkhouse Moor.  I think this was the only Wainwright we'd done with a gps trace, so nice to revisit it.

View over Ullswater on the climb down.  Piper was off lead for quite a lot of the descent, the visibility was great and she was too tired to get too far away.

And finally as we came back into Glenriddding we got a great view up to Sheffield Pike on the left.  Piper was super keen to get near the sheep in the field that the path went through, lots of exciting noises, but no chance of getting off lead here!