Sunday, 6 November 2011

November 2011 - Ambleside & Keswick

Last walking trip of the year hoping for better weather than I had in June. I know it won't be as warm but am hoping it will not be so wet.

Originally had planned to include Kirkby Stephen as one of the bases and fit in Mickle Fell during its November access weekend, but this resulted in an over ambitious plan with no contingency for rest days or bad weather.

With just 3 weeks before departure, the plan has now been refined and finalised by leaving on Sunday 06 November 2011 with Clive, after hopefully watching Ipswich Town beat Doncaster Rovers the day before. Returning home on 17 November 2011, in time to see Ipswich's next home game against Notingham Forrest on 19 Movember 2011. Making 8 days walking over 10 days available.

The first 3 days will be based at Ambleside Backpackers Hostel with a short drive over the Wrynose Pass where each of the 3 walks will start near.

It is then onto Keswick Youth Hostel for 7 days where Clive will leave me on Saturday 12 November 2011 and leaving me in the hands of public transport to get to the start points for the remaining 3 walks to complete the Northern Fells.

The 2 rest days have been scheduled evenly throughout the trip, though these dates may well change if the weather is particularly bad on a planned walking day.

I am of course hoping there will only be 2 bad weather days during the 10 walking days available. That is 1 wet day in 5. Too much to hope for?

28 Nuttalls are planned to be visited with 21 not being visited before.

If all are visited there will only be 9 left in the Lake District including Pillar Rock.

As Clive will be returning home to London on Saturday 12 November I will take the opportunity for him to drop me off at The Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel in Langdale with the aim of walking point to point to Seatoller Farm leaving a bus ride for me back to Keswick on the Stagecoach No78.
This walk will enable me to mop up 2 isolated tops that ordinarily would have needed 2 circular walks.

06 November 2011

 I was hoping to stay at Ambleside Youth Hostel but for some reason they have put the nightly rate up to £22.95. Too expensive - so I have booked into Ambleside Backpackers Hostel.

I think it is a bit risky to camp in November.

No rest days scheduled but still an achievable plan. The longest walk to mop up Grey Friar is only 7.94 with the next longest day to visit Harter Fell (Eskdale) being slightly shorter at 7.83 miles with an option to truncate if weather is not favourable. Both these walks will bag one new Nuttall each

The remaining walk around Cold Pike is only 4.91 miles and the shortest but will bag 4 Nuttalls. It brings me back to the south end of Crinkle Crags.

I had planned to do the Cold Pikes on the way to Crinkle Crags back in April 2009 but chose on that day to miss them out and make sure I traversed the Crags and returned to Langdale NT campsite befpre dark,

11 November 2011

The second part of the trip will be focussed on completing the Northern Fells from a base at Keswick Youth Hostel which is much more reasonably priced.

The last time I was on these fells was back in April 2009, very early on in my peak bagging career. I did not expect it to be so long before I returned and unless I decide to complete the Wainwrights do not expect to return other than on a sightseeing trip or if I can re-inspire my wife to bag some of these fells. Of course if the weather is too bad to traverse Sharp Edge I will be back.

Three of the 4 walks are much longer than those planned for Ambleside in excess of 10 miles with an expected time to complete for 2 of them around the 8 hour mark so better watch out for day light hours on these two.

The main thing is there are 2 rest days scheduled which removes a lot of pressure and frustration of staying off the fell in bad weather conditions and possibly having to return at a later date to complete.

Thinking positively it may well be clear blue skies for the whole fortnight and our level of fitness is such that we can walk every day. If that is the case I have a spare walk from Langdale to Seatoller to bag the two isolated peaks of Rossett Pike and Seathwaite Fell South Top which somehow were missed on previous walks in those areas.

Lonscale & Skiddaw Forrest is longest walk along with the most ascent for the whole trip. Intend to do this early as possible when Clive is still here, but also want to do on a good weather day if possible. Contingency for this walk will be to concentrate on Nuttall tops so may return from Little Calva along the Cumbria Way. Other option is to split the walk over  days and stay at Skiddaw House , but this is unlikely as most likely will have booked accommodation in advance.

Likely to be Clives last day so have scheduled this one here as start point is furthest away from Keswick. Although over 10 miles ascent is less than 800m so without being complacent and having good weather conditions should be no problem to complete subject to our physical fitness.

This walk is really an easy option to do on a short day or bad weather day. Only one new Nuttall to visit as already visited Carlside when bagged Skiddaw back in April 2009. However might be a bit more challenging on windy day as Longside Edge looks like a bit of an arĂȘte. Good practice for Sharp Edge.

Have saved this walk till last saving Sharp Edge as the "best bit". Also has lots of options for pal (b), (c) or even (d) if I am really tired or conditions are not ideal. e.g. (b) approach Atkinson Pike west of Foule Crag instead of going via Sharp Edge, (c) as not using a car, miss out Doddick & Scales Fell and return direct to Keswick via Blencathra Centre or (d) swap one of the rest days especially if conditions are bad above 500m.

This walk is an extra which provides contingency in the event it is good weather every day while I am in Keswick. Of course we all know the answer to that. The only feasable opportunity to do this however is when Clive returns home leaving me in Keswick to get the train back. So not only will it need to be a decent day that day, I need to have completed the 2 planned walks from Keswick already and the weather outlook for the week is good ensuring I can complete the to remaining walks. That is of course ALL dependent on me not being too tired and being able to walk on a planned rest day that has not been scheduled to do a walk that has not been missed already.

Hope that is clear. Nobody can say I am not prepared.

And prepared I am this is all walks planned before the end of September, 5 weeks before departure. I am pretty good at planning walks but not very good at catching up with old walks to be included on blog. Must get on with this.

No comments:

Post a Comment

If you have visited any of the peaks, places or areas mentioned on this page/post and have photo albums, routes, blog or web page please put the URL here.
I will then include link on this page.
The aim is to provide alternative routes for all visitors (be they new or regular visitors) giving information about places of interest or features to look out for whilst out on the hill.
Like-wise if you have a similar facility on your page I would appreciate a link to this page.