TR: an easy weekend in Wasdale

Discussion in 'General Fitness' started by Mark Manning, Jul 26, 2005.

  1. Mark Manning

    Mark Manning Guest

    The forecast, as often happens, was rather iffy, with the possibility
    of afternoon showers merging to heavier rain overnight, and a wet Sunday.
    I might well not have bothered going given the forecast, but I was feeling
    rather hill-starved, and I had some things to sort out in my mind, best
    done in the hills.

    Left the car with friends in the Wasdale valley and headed along by
    the lake. Wastwater was as still as I've ever known it; only the tiniest
    ripples interrupting the reflections of the screes. Just stunning. Many
    people just enjoying the views (it now being the English school holidays),
    and rather few people doing outdoor things like scuba or (heaven forbid!)

    Decided to take a change from the usual path up to Dore Head under
    the shoulder of Yewbarrow, and instead followed the path beside Over Beck,
    stopping a couple of times for a dip. The day was still cloudy, but it
    was warm, and there was no wind; so heading up-hill was hot work! Got to
    Dore Head in time for a late lunch; the warmth encouraged me to take the
    journey rather gently. The cloud was well down over the higher hills;
    Black Sail pass was just clear, but the mist was clearly lifting gently.

    Headed up on the main path towards Red Pike. A small path leaves the
    main one to the left and scrambles up to the lower top; I took this, and
    it was easy, despite having a heavy overnight backpack. The summit ridge
    was in mist, but not quite in the usual way: a still day, and so discrete
    pockets of cloud floated around, with some clear areas. I took the path
    beside the precipitous drop into Mosedale, and reached the summit easily.

    The col with Scoat Fell was clear, and I headed up into the mist to
    the top. I'd met a few parties on Red Pike, but there was no-one on Scoat
    Fell itself. I thought I'd treat myself taking the arete to Steeple, and
    enjoyed it; normally I treat it rather cautiously. However, having
    recently returned from a fortnight in Scotland, where the terrain is
    rather tougher, I thought "piece of p*ss" and toddled along happily, even
    walking along the crest of the ridge in places. But, yes, the fact I
    couldn't see the full extent of the drop probably helped!

    Steeple itself was deserted, but the magnificent view was absent with
    the mist. Back to the main ridge, and along easily to the top of Haycock.
    It was now getting on for 1700, so I went back to the Haycock / Scoat Fell
    col. This nearly always has a strong wind or gale blowing through it;
    here there was just a little breeze, with the cloud floating around
    gently. Down to a favourite camp site in Great Cove for the night, which
    fortunately was in the sun. It was warm enough to cook and sit outside
    (although the midges were a bit of a pain). I went to bed at about 2030
    (as it was clear that the sunset wouldn't do much), almost for something
    to do, and fell soundly asleep almost at once, woken by the alarm at 0700.

    I opened the tent expecting to see the normal Sunday morning mist.
    Instead I was confronted with sun and a brilliant blue sky! Very nice to
    find it warm and pleasant enough to cook and eat breakfast outside. Also
    nice to be in cool air up the mountain, with a gentle breeze keeping me

    Back to the Haycock / Scoat Fell col, where The Midge was making busy
    at the marker cairn. I then took a traversing path onto the moss below
    Seatallan, and headed up the steep slope to the top. This wasn't quite
    as bad as I was expecting; perhaps the Scottish trip did my fitness some
    good! Then down the same route, trending right to head towards Middle
    Fell, but still avoid the tedious scree slope.

    I dithered rather about having a dip in Greendale Tarn (which look
    full of algae); but in the end headed for the top of Middle Fell for
    lunch. On the way down, as the path finally began to steepen, I contoured
    over to Tongues Gills and found a spot for a bathe. The sun was still
    out, but the wind was gradually picking up again.

    Then down to Greendale and back to the car. Several people were
    swimming in Wastwater, not a sight I see very often. Not a very
    adventurous weekend perhaps, because it was warm; but a very good one!

    Mark Manning [email protected]

  2. The Reids

    The Reids Guest

    Following up to Mark Manning

    >Several people were
    >swimming in Wastwater, not a sight I see very often.

    in wetsuits maybe!

    I cant understand this trip report, how did you manage to stay
    out of the Wasdale Head for so long, i've never done that :*) In
    fact most recent trip was, its raining, in the WH then. Raining
    again, in the WH then.....
    Mike Reid
    Wasdale picture gallery
    (see website for email)