Superb views on walk 118

September 30, 2016

Couple above Derwentwater

Couple above Derwentwater

Some weather is dubious for walking at best, but there are other reasons to welcome a forecast of ‘sunshine and showers’. On walk 118 I was being battered by hail at one point, and this was the windiest walk for some time. However, there were also advantages to it. I was up on the southern side of the Skiddaw range, bagging Carl Side and Dodd, and Wainwright was once seen to mutter (in the Skiddaw Little Man chapter as it happens) that the view south from these fells is the best in the District. I would be inclined to agree with him, as you can see here. There are several other pictures like this up on the walk 118 page.

View from White Stones

View south from White Stones, on Carl Side

Two summits bagged takes my total of second round fells to 76 of the 330, thus I have 254 to go. I hope to get my next walk in before October is out but I have only a couple of available dates so it does depend on the weather. But as this walk proved, sometimes it is worth taking a gamble on this kind of thing…

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First light, Mosedale

First light. 6.40am in Mosedale, having just departed the Cottage on the ascent of Howes.

I’ve been planning for a while to undertake a walk that included an overnight stay in the bothy of Mosedale Cottage. This old shepherd’s accommodation has no facilities beyond a sofa and a stove (but no fuel unless you bring it): even water has to be brought from the nearby stream. But if one can bring everything else that is needed, it allows easier access to some particularly inaccessible Wainwrights.

Hence the walk I did this week, walk 117; 21 miles in total, starting at Burneside railway station on Wednesday morning and finishing at Burnbanks, near the Haweswater dam, at 10am on Thursday in time for the weekly bus to Penrith.

Mosedale Cottage

Mosedale Cottage

I bagged 11 Wainwrights over the two days, a slice through the far eastern fringe of the District: several from chapters in the Outlying Fells (Bannisdale Horseshoe, Howes, Naddle Horseshoe) and three from the Far Eastern Fells (Grey Crag, Tarn Crag, Selside Pike). This boosts the total to 74 done from my second round, meaning I have 256 to go.

Although it was a memorable experience, particularly in the first 45 minutes or so of the morning of day 2, I have to say this was also one of my hardest walks, particularly due to the need to carry so much on my back. Day 1 was sunny, but also warm and sweaty, whereas the last two hours of day 2 were done in poor weather and, at the very end, heavy rain. But I guess thanks to the scenes pictured here, it was probably worth it. Read all about it on the walk 117 page if you are interested.

Howes summit

The summit of Howes, 7.05am on day 2 of walk 117