Monday, 20 March 2017

The "Two Crosses" - 19 March

An East Lancs' LDWA Challenge Walk which we last did in 2006 in conditions a little better than today, although that wouldn't have been difficult at all. A long, cold, very wet day out and my longest run for over two years. Thanks for the company, Checkers.

This is a particularly well organised and supported LDWA Event and the check point marshals deserve enormous thanks - it was bad enough running in these conditions so marshalling, especially outdoors with little or no shelter must have been, at least a little, unpleasant.

The Best Bit - Butties, Tea and Soup

Second Best Bit - Back On-line

Monday, 13 March 2017

Not Cartridge Hill - 12 March

A week or so ago I stumbled across local summit on the Hill Bagging website which we have walked and run passed for, probably, 20 years. Cartridge Hill is a small hill on the edge of Darwen Moor but a distinct summit enjoying fine views over the Lancashire Plain.

After a sunny morning and a very pleasant short, warm run across the fields to complete another 50+ week we decided today was the day for Cartridge Hill. The weather and circumstances, however, thought otherwise. The nearest car park, at Slipper Lowe, which might have allowed us to reach a relatively dry track going very close to the summit is now closed and the access blocked. There are alternatives and while deciding which would be "least worst" the rain arrived to compliment the very low cloud base which is down to road level.

Now, rather than enjoying views across the Lancashire Plain we could barely see across the Blue Lagoon in Belmont. Cartridge Hill and its views will be there for the next time.

The Blue Lagoon (i)

The Blue Lagoon (ii)

The Blue Lagoon (iii)

Belmont Church

The Blue Lagoon (iv)

Monday, 6 March 2017

Winter Hill - 04 March

Most of this year's ascents of Winter Hill have been in low cloud or after dark neither of which is ideal for taking photographs so the prospect of a sunny day run to the end of the tarmac was pleasing. It is also a while since I ran on Winter Hill on a Saturday morning which is something of a contrast with the days when it was my most used Saturday morning running area. There were more cyclists than runners out but the "Stan Bradshaw Memorial Race" on Pendle probably attracted many of the local fell runners.

However bright the sunshine the cold wind was a constant reminder that winter isn't yet over although there has been remarkably little "proper winter" this year. A year ago there was snow here and I was preparing for a "Winter Week" in the Cairngorms before sunshine on the Costa Blanca. This year there is no snow here and so little in the Cairngorms we may not go but we do have a week in the hills on the Costa Blanca to look forward to.

Rusty Chain

Mast Road Puddle

Another Runner

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Central Fells - 14 February

A forecast for sunshine on Valentine's Day tempted us into Great Langdale where it was almost Spring-like as we climbed to Stickle Tarn en route to Thunacar Knott. Any lingering illusions we might enjoy a warm day were blasted away by the bitter wind coursing across the fell tops. Snow and ice underfoot slowed progress a little but provided a wonderful finishing touch to the views.

Sergeant Man offered enough shelter for lunch before heading towards Blea Rigg to bag some Synges above Great Langdale - Great Castle How and Little Castle How before finishing on Whitegill Crags. The latter seems a fairly uninteresting little lump at the end of a shoulder but what views it commands! Well worth visiting for the crags below.

Lunch on Sergeant Man

Stickle Tarn

Late Afternoon Light above the Coniston Fells

Langdale Pikes

Pavey Ark

Monday, 6 February 2017

Northern Fells - 05 February

Back to our, seemingly neverending, "Third Round" of Wainwright's High Fells.  As ever with unplanned 'bagging' we have bits and pieces left to do and they are spread over 6 of his seven volumes - the Southern Fells is the one we have already completed for the third time.

Today we climbed into winter on Carl Side, just above the cloud base, and then visited Longside Edge and Ullock Pike. Returning over Longside Edge and Ullock Pike before dropping down to Dodd to 'tick' another four.

Towards Borrowdale

Over Longside Edge towards Carl Side

On Longside Edge

On Longside Edge

On Longside Edge

From Dodd

Towards Borrowdale

Monday, 9 January 2017

Winter Hill - 07 January

Foggy wet day and something of a contrast with two days ago. I did wonder if the top of the hill might be above the clouds but even the top of the mast wasn't above the clouds so there wasn't much to be seen anywhere.

Finger Post near the mast

Telegraph Poles on Factory Hill (i)

Telegraph Poles on Factory Hill (ii)

Footpath into the fog

Horwich Cemetery

Rain drops on bridge over the railway

Friday, 6 January 2017

Winter Hill - 05 January

A glorious sunny day and an opportunity for a long run over Winter Hill with the distraction of the Air Ambulance on Rivington Pike. Not an exercise as I thought originally but attending to a 70 year old walker who collapsed on the summit. The casualty was taken to hospital in one of the Mountain Rescue vehicles which must be why the Air Ambulance crew were so laid back.

Telegraph Pole on Factory Hill

Air Ambulance (i)

Air Ambulance (ii)

Air Ambulance (iii)

Air Ambulance (iv)

Air Ambulance (v)

On Rivington Pike



Tuesday, 27 December 2016

Great Hill - 24 December

The traditional Christmas Eve run over Great Hill, this year under a heavy, threatening sky.

Great Hill Summit

Drinkwaters Farm

Looking North from Great Hill
Age and or infirmity made me think twice about trying to keep up with the main group for all of the seven miles. At the start of the slabbed path over Spitler's Edge I decided the struggle would be too much so I headed directly to the summit of Great Hill before following the rest of the route back to White Coppice.

Monday, 12 December 2016

Winter Hill - 11 December

A short walk for some photos on the Mast Road just above the cloud base.

Eastern Fells - 10 December

The Mell Fells and the Meldrums along with a few others with the intention of bagging everything between Brownhow Hill and Ullswater. The final two Synges, closest to Ullswater eluded us as daylight faded faster then we allowed for. Of most significance were the Mell fells because they bring us two summits closer to completing our "Third Round" of Wainwright's High Fells. 21 remain on a round started about 12 years ago. Perhaps we'll finish it next year.

Great Mell Fell

Little Mell Fell

Gowbarrow Fell
 The list for the day was Brownhow Hill and Great Mell Fell followed by Little Mell Fell, Watermillock Fell, Little Meldrum, Great Meldrum, Gowbarrow Park and then both Gowbarrow Fell summits.