Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Buckbarrow – 18 October

About 50 of us joined Joss and Lassie for the Sunday morning walk over Buckbarrow and the traditional end to the “Joss Dinner” weekend.

20151018_002_wasdale-154-EditSteve, Joss and Alan on Buckbarrow

20151018_001_wasdale-144-EditJoss and Steve


20151018_003_wasdale-165-EditTom, Joss and Lassie on Buckbarrow with the Scafell Massif in the distance

Eycott Hill – 17 October

Eycott Hill and the adjacent Little Eycott were the sum total of our ‘Birkett Bagging’ efforts for the day. I am almost too embarrassed to record this but they are effectively a singleton and too far from other Birketts to be conveniently bagged with them. We were really on our way to Keswick to see a couple of exhibitions before they closed at the end of the month and realised Eycott Hill(s) would be a minor diversion which they were. The views of the Northern Fells make the diversion worthwhile and even in the flat grey light the nearby fells create a strong sense of being on the edge of somewhere very interesting.

20151017_001_wasdale-10-EditBlencathra beyond Souther Fell



20151017_002_wasdale-51-EditGreat Mell Fell and much more in the far distance

Between the exhibitions we wandered down to the Lake for the obligatory shots of water & fells with and without boats. Keswick Photographic Society have an exhibition in the Theatre by The Lake which worth a look if you are passing and afterwards we had a look into the recently refurbished Keswick Museum by the side of Fitz Park where there is a temporary but extensive exhibition of Wainwright memorabilia. This too is worth a look as is the rest of the museum.
















Being the Third Saturday in October the Joss Naylor Lakeland Challenge Presentation Dinner will be held in the evening and that was our excuse to head down the coast to Wasdale where we found some spectacular later afternoon sunshine.

20151017_011_wasdale-133 Over Wast Water towards Whin Rigg and the west end of the lake

20151017_010_wasdale-132Across to the screes below Illgill Head

20151017_009_wasdale-119Wast Water – looking west

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Wasdale and home – 12 October

After an early shower of rain the weather set about improving and we saw the sun arriving in Wasdale as we were leaving for Gummer’s How. Coffee in the sunshine in Grange before heading home – what a marvellous Monday morning!


20151012_002_wasdale-180-EditWasdale sunbursts


20151012_003_wasdale-200Gummer’s How


20151012_004_wasdale-380Chocolatier in Grange

Spyke’s Joss Naylor Lakeland Challenge – 11 October

20151011_001_wasdale-127Spyke with Joss after a record breaking run

Spyke reached Greendale Bridge 10 hours and 20 minutes after leaving Pooley Bridge to record a new fastest Crossing

Mickledore and More – 11 October

Armed with an overoptimistic weather forecast and an overambitious plan we were heading for Mickledore when the cloud base dropped to obscure both Scafell Pike summit and Mickledore itself. Despite the forecast and the earlier sunshine there was no prospect whatsoever of being able to find our way to Pen on the Eskdale side of Scafell Pike.

Through Mickledore and down to Upper Eskdale where we decided to leave Gait Crags until we returned to bag Pan and head round to Whinscales and Great How to bag two Birketts. This accomplished we headed back to Brackenclose thinking about the couple we had met earlier near Great Moss. The conversation opened with “Please tell me this isn’t Great Moss”, unfortunately it was. Having walked through Esk Hause in the wrong direction (in very poor visibility) they compounded the error by descending into Upper Eskdale instead of Great Langdale. All we could do was confirm their location and direct them back to Esk Hause.


20151011_001_wasdale-501-EditWasdale with some early sunshine


20151011_002_wasdale-507-EditApproaching Mickledore

20151011_003_wasdale-509Looking down to Upper Eskdale


20151011_004_wasdale-510Looking down to Upper Eskdale

20151011_005_wasdale-529Upper Eskdale


20151011_006_wasdale-538Upper Eskdale looking toward Esk Hause




20151011_007_wasdale-540Upper Eskdale


20151011_008_wasdale-546Towards Stoney Tarn


20151011_009_wasdale-550Slight Side and Scafell from Great How

Wasdale Show – 10 October

One of the reasons to be in Wasdale this weekend is the Show and it didn’t disappoint.

20151010_001_wasdale-37Herdwick Judging




20151010_004_wasdale-52Ready for a closer inspection


20151010_005_wasdale-54Tension mounts


20151010_007_wasdale-60Getting ready for the final placings



20151010_009_wasdale-90Shepherd’s Crooks


20151010_010_wasdale-91Shepherd’s Crooks

20151010_011_wasdale-93Shepherd’s Crooks with Great Gable beyond


20151010_012_wasdale-325Shepherd’s Crook


20151010_006_wasdale-303Awww ………………

20151010_013_wasdale-344Best Beard in Show

Beacon Fell – 09 October

Another “Outlyer” bagged

20151009_001_wasdale-7-EditConiston Fells from the summit of Beacon Fell

Thursday, 8 October 2015

The Rucksack Club – Navigation Meet

The annual Rucksack Club Long, Medium and Short Score Event for orienteers and non-orienteers alike has been known as various things from the simple but mis-leading “fell race” to the “Navigation Challenge” which it almost always is, even without any element of competition. The element of competition is, of course, low key - right up until the course map is revealed!

This year we are helping Rae & Helen put out controls of Thursday and Friday and then, along with others, collecting them on Sunday. We collected Keith on the way north and let him have his first look at his Joss Naylor Lakeland Challenge 22 hour schedule. The three of us had a wander over ground to the south of Harter Fell on Thursday afternoon before going to the hut at High Moss in the Duddon Valley. After a beer in the afternoon sunshine in Eskdale we headed for the club hut in Duddon, High Moss. More or less on a whim we went via Cockley Beck and on Hard Knott Pass saw the start of a magnificent sunset.


20151001_001_nav-meet-58From Hard Knott Pass

On Friday we went out separately, placing (or hiding as some competitors suggested) the remainder of the controls and I headed up Harter Fell into low cloud. Initially, I wasn’t too concerned because I thought I would reach the first control before reaching the cloud base and this turned out to be the case. Before I had time to worry about how to reach the location of the second control in the clag, the clouds lifted a little and blew away to reveal fell tops above an inversion.

20151002_002_nav-meet-1017Clouds thinning above Duddon

20151002_004_nav-meet-1025Dow Crag just above the inversion


20151002_005_nav-meet-1032Dow Crag again  with Caw just visible through the inversion


20151002_007_nav-meet-1041Harter Fell Trig Point


20151002_008_nav-meet-1047Over Green Crag to the Ulpha Fells beyond with Black Combe in the distance

20151002_009_nav-meet-1080Small tarn on Harter Fell and the Dragonfly I shared it with


20151002_010_nav-meet-1089Harter Fell


20151002_012_nav-meet-1108-EditRiver Duddon from Fickle Stepping Stones

Not completing meant we had Saturday to ourselves so we had a wander round the Turner Landscape fell race route, hoping for another day as good as Friday had been. The morning started well as we climbed Grey Friar but by the time we reached Swirl How the cloud had thickened and dropped, robbing us and everyone else on the ridge of the views we had enjoyed the previous day.

20151003_013_nav-meet-23-EditSeathwaite Tarn

20151004_014_nav-meet-29From Harter Fell on Sunday

On Sunday it was back to Harter Fell to collect controls without the Dragonfly by the tarn. The morning mist failed to clear and the day remained hazy and atmospheric. Thanks Rae & Helen for another superb Navigation Meet – looking forward to next year’s already.