Friday, 14 March 2014

One misty moisty morning.... March 14th.
 It had been unseasonally warm all week. Men had cleaned their lawn mowers and given the mossy lawns the first cut of the year. Washing waved in light breezes in gardens rather than tumbling in dryers. Children played out, who am I kidding, they stayed on their computers.
 So we decided to go to the Lake District for the first time this year, all seven of us; Dave, Harry, Ben, Brian, Ray, John and me, a two car job. And as we approached the west side of England the fog got thicker making it impossible to see the tops. But we were determined, moist but determined.
 The plan was to walk from Hartsop, a hamlet near Glenridding, up to Thornthwite Beacon and along High Street.
 To get to Hartsop from Newcastle go west on the A69, south on the M6, west at Penrith for a short time on the A66 and turn south at Rheged Centre on the road that goes alongside Ullswater through Glenridding and Patterdale finally turning left for Hartsop, Go through the small collection of cottages and there is a small carpark, a Yorkshire one, it's free.
  We stopped at the Rheged Centre for breakfast. It is an exhibition centre devoted to Vikings, and it has shops!
The map needed is the OS Outdoor Leisure 5, The English Lakes North East section and the car park is at  NY 410130.

This week's car park; Hartsop
  We left the car park in a south easterly direction  along a track that climbed gently alongside Pasture Beck. 

                                  Old mine workings in Hayeswater Gill. The building at
                                               the bottom could have been a water mill. 
                                                           Overshot as you have noticed.
The path gets steeper as it approaches Threshthwaite Crag and at the end, as it climbs up to Threshwaite Mouth it was hard work, as I had not been on a decent mountain since October last year. The path has been converted to a well maintained "stairway to heaven" with large flat stones embedded in the ground but a short break at the top was welcome. From here the path climbs, still very steeply, to Thornthwaite Beacon where we called a  Herbie Spot, after only 2.7 miles!
Tucked behind a wall out of a very strong wind we had, as well as sandwiches, Mr Kipling's Cherry Bakewell pies, chocolate, ginger biscuits and some delicious chocolate slices from John.
                                       The beacon in the mist.
Leaving the beacon we followed the line of the Roman road in a north east direction past High Street and Racecourse Hill before turning north for The Knott.
                                             The line of the Roman road on High Street
                                     This particular bit of Roman road connected Ambleside
                                           with Penrith. Most of the stones have been recycled.
 From the track, which fortunately is quite flat at this point we could look down on Hayeswater and later, as the path turned north east it went close to Angle Tarn which was hosting a small group of Canada Geese. They were probably keeping out of the wind which was still very strong.
                                                           Getting a little brighter.
                                                         Angle Tarn.
It is no longer possible to wander lonely as a cloud in  Lakeland. I blame William Wordsworth for being a Romantic and writing his daffodils poem, Sam Taylor Coleridge for climbing a few mountains and writing about them and Alfred Wainwright whose brilliant books on the Lakes encouraged others to follow in his footsteps. Today we came across a large group of walkers, some of them qualified gadgies, who had come for a weekend's walking from Derbyshire. In fact we saw more walkers than daffodils.
Beyond Angle Tarn, well beyond it actually we came to Boredale Hause. The path turned through 180 degrees almost and we headed downhill towards Brothers Water and the car park at Hartsop. On the way we had a view of Glenridding and the southern end of Ullswater but the tops remained under cloud, sadly.
                                                              Glenridding on Ullswater.
                                                            Waterfall on Angle Tarn Beck

A good work out for our first Lakes Trip of the year. On the way home we stopped at the Red
Lion Hotel in Patterdale which had a selection of beers, including Theakston's. It also sold coffee for me. Being intellectuals we discussed University Education, as you do on these occasions. It was observed that Newcastle and Northumbria Universities had a high number of students from South East Asia. "It's an occident waiting to happen"

The Matrix MMXIVJ

                                                         steps                            miles
LIDL3D                                              21050                         9.6
Higear suffered a catastrophic malfunction in that the belt clip broke
Dave's   LIDL 3D                               25875                        11.55
LIDLUSB                                           23529                         10.3

OUTDOORGPS                                                                     9.76
Brians GPS                                                                             9.7
Ben's Bragometer                                                                    9.8
Gadgie Distance  114.8

 A walk of two halves, but not necessarily equal
Contains OS data Copyright. Crown copyright and database right 2014
Not the best of days for the ornithologists. We saw a pair of ravens and a pair of buzzards, a pied wagtail, two robins and the usual collection of lbjs, but the bird of the blog goes to.........
                                                           The grey wagtail