All our camping gear was packed ready for spending a weekend at Wold Farm, near Flamborough, on
Yorkshire's east coast, but a last minute check on the internet revealed the site wasn't open until Monday - the day after the weekend. An email to the site owner, asking if we could come anyway, failed to get a reply. We assumed that meant 'No'. Instead, we opted for a favourite site in the Lake District and were jolly thankful we did. The weather on the east coast turned out to be cold, grey and grizzly whereas Langdale languished under warm, sunny skies when the temperature rose to a balmy 19ºC. The Langdale site is also a working farm, so we shared it with sheep, geese, hens - and cockerels competing for which could crow loudest. As regards pitches, we were somewhat spoilt for choice. It's hard to make up your mind when you're the only ones there and, like the hens, have free range. We opted for a sheltered corner we judged would likely catch the most sunshine - morning and evening - pitched the tent, filled our water bottles, got out the chairs and settled down for a brew. We'd arrived.
|Content in our cosy corner - our first camp of the year...|
|Racing my shadow under that craggy fell.......|
Sunday proved a classic example of Rabbie Burns' lines - The best laid schemes o' mice an' men gang
aft a-gley - and they sure did. I'd foolishly set my heart on climbing England's highest mountain - Scafell Pike - but in my weakened decrepit state failed miserably. Nevertheless, it felt good to be back in high and lonely places with wheatears, meadow pipits and skylarks for company as we toiled up the much refurbished Rossett Ghyll. Conservation workers have done a first class job of making the rocky path more amenable to the trekking hoards. Amazingly, of the many thousands of interlocking stones that form the trail I never came across one that was loose, tilted or rocked about. After 1,700ft of climbing I'll admit to feeling pretty knackered by the time we reached Angle Tarn, so was soon rooting around in my befuddled brain for a Plan B - or maybe C. There was no way I was going to make it to Scafell Pike. We eventually decided on a route considered the easiest option, viz. traversing round the back of Rossett Pike and descending by Stakes Pass back to the valley floor. It was a good choice because that path too had undergone much conservation work making for a faster descent than we'd anticipated, down to the bridge over the river where we stopped for a bite to eat and a belated swig of juice.
|Angle Tarn, and a wee bit of snow on the hills....|
|Back down, crossing the river below Stake Pass...|
|Lakeland icons - Pike o' Stickle and a Herdwick sheep...|
Instructions given to me by nurse on leaving hospital was to drink a glass of water every hour to flush the system, something I'd very much neglected to do while sweating around the hills all day with just a half litre of electrolyte juice in my sack - which I hardly touched. I reckoned that was a perfectly good reason to visit our local hostelry in the evening to restore the status quo with some of the best water I've ever tasted. It's refinement is due to the expertise of a certain gentleman called Timothy Taylor who has a processing plant somewhere in Keighley. I'm not sure what he does to it but it's much nicer than the ordinary insipid stuff and slips down the throat much easier. Before, during and after a delectable roast beef dinner I reckon I made up for around eight hours worth of missing fluid. I'm sure nurse would be very pleased with that......