So, it’s been a while. Sorry about that. Work is mental and haven’t felt like writing when I’ve had the time J
I got 3 nights in close succession recently which was a real tonic. The weather was hot and humid so my usual forecast analytics kicked in and I was studying charts and apps! I hadn’t been to Wetherlam for a while so I decided on my favourite rock.
I set off mid-afternoon from Coppermines valley; bloody hell it was roasting!!!!It really was. I headed up the Hole Rake track and onto the lower flanks. I had decided to collect water on the way up and found a suitable source big enough to fit my 2 litre bag under. It was green and mossy with bits in it and not running much but I guess it’s all part of testing the kit we use!
My pack seemed to burn into my shoulders with the heat and several times I asked myself why I was doing this in 26 C heat! I plodded on and happily I saw nobody. It was very hazy. I was happy to feel the breeze as I reached the final false summit-it was due to be around 15mph which was perfect.
I was soon at my rock and setting up. I had a new tripod to use-not that I’m any good at photography though I thought it may help!!!!
The sun was still high and the heat was incredible for the summits; I think it was the first time this year I have been in a crop top on the mountain summits!!!
I was soon firing up the Jetboil and preparing my Bla Band meal. I have recently found that the instant Mocha sachets are very good. I don’t much like Nestle as a company but I need good powdered drinks as some of them are rank. Especially in winter, it’s one thing you really look forward to.
I was soon tucking in and watching the colours on the rock change to warm orange. Sunset wasn’t far away! It was so beautiful. The breeze was warm on my face; you could feel the autumnal hue in the air.
I poured my wine and sat on the summit watching and listening. A Red Admiral butterfly danced around me and warmed its wings on a nearby rock…It wouldn’t sit still for a photo though!
I didn’t feel much like taking photos but did a few. Some nights I guess you just want to sit and take it all in.
The sun started to sink behind Great Carrs and I was treated to an incredible sunset… As usual the effort and pain had been worth it. Even when the sun had gone the warmth remained. It was blissful. The wind had dropped but no midges came out to play luckily.
I gathered my bits and headed to my rock to have my hot chocolate and last pain killers. I gazed over the hills, the haze was thick and I wondered who else was out tonight. There were others as I found out. I always wonder… Sometimes you see a distant headtorch light and wonder if its someone you know.
Despite the lingering warmth it was time to get under gore-tex! I was soon snuggled in. My Sea to Summit mat is fab. I didn’t think that the Ultra-light one would give enough comfort on solid rock but it does. I have just bought a pillow and it is brilliant! Soooo comfortable…Its the little things that make the difference I think. Small inexpensive luxuries that weigh little and make a huge difference to sleeping hours.
I was soon all sorted. I saw 1 shooting star and the moon shone through the haze. The Harvest Moon was almost at its fullest.
I woke a few time in the night to change sides and get my back comfy but other than that I slept soundly and without any disturbance! I awoke to an incredibly quiet morning. You could hear a pin drop. Thankfully there were no midges and I was able to enjoy my porridge without being annoyed!
The light was quite flat but when the sun did appear it was just a red orb set in colourless mist; Stunning! A break in the mist under the sun produced something very odd; it was a small patch of red over Windermere. A single break in the cloud allowing a ray of red sunlight through. Very surreal…..
It was soon time to pack,I was off so I was able to enjoy a nice gentle walk down with a hope to getting out again later. More forecast studying would be done when I got home. The walk down was lovely as I got to witness the farmer gathering over the flanks of Wetherlam. Great to see. The herdies weren’t looking overly impressed but needs must I guess!
It was time to head for home to recharge, refuel and dry kit!
I drove home thinking about how pissed off Merlot would be if I deserted her again!! Of course, she doesn’t give a damn as long as there is food provided and somewhere warm to sleep…there is always both!
I reached home and checked the forecast. I fancied the Langdales and Pike O Blisco area. I decided on the tent as the forecast indicated heavy rain overnight in the early hours. I repacked and set off – after feeding the idiot of course J
I was soon in Langdale, again it was roasting. I was early. I stopped at the shop and they had sold out of Gin and Tonic cans…I was gutted! I would have to make do with wine J
I went to the Old for a pre camp vino. I sat outside the pub after having a chat to Cam behind the bar. Such a friendly spot. Had another natter to the locals then drove up the pass and parked half way up at the path to Redacre Gill. I hadn’t been up this way for ages! I knew it was going to be hot and steep! It didn’t disappoint!!!!! God I was wrecked. I filled my Sawyer water bottle at the head of the gill and continued. My top was wringing wet with sweat and it dripped off my chin. Even my arms were dripping! It felt hotter than Wetherlam. The path is quite scrambly in places and it was tough with my big pack. It was very damp still also and slippery. Still, I cracked on and was soon at the summit. It was very boggy, much more so than I recalled from previous visits. I searched around for suitable pitches. Perfect rock shelves would lend themselves perfectly to the bivvy bag for future visits (Ste J). Flying ants plagued both summit cairns so I didn’t stick around. I headed off the west side and ended up doing a massive loop and back to near the top of Redacre Gill! I chose Long Crag.
It took a while to find a good spot that wasn’t too boggy but the view onto the Langdale Pikes was simply stunning. I pitched the tent and went about my admin and getting everything in its place..
I had brought Real Turmat food with me this time. I only have a little bit of it so I am rationing myself. It is delicious! I had 2 courses of Meat Soup and Game Casserole. Very nice. Washed down with a nice Merlot.Oh and Ritter chocolate 🙂
I had 4G so checked the forecast and saw that the winds were really going to pick up through the night and very heavy rain! More good testing for the Southern Cross. There was a bit of condensation showing tonight but the air had gone from being very warm to pretty chilly so it was to be expected. I decanted some more water through my filter ready for my brew later on and had a wander. It’s a really lovely area. I looked over to the Coniston Fells and it looked very cloudy, this soon engulfed me also! It soon cleared to leave lovely skies though I was obscured from the sunset.
The air felt chilly despite the heat of the day and it was time to get wrapped up and out of the wind. The sky was pretty spectacular despite the haze.
I heated the water from my hot chocolate and watched to moon rise. It was a beauty. I was very content with my choice of location. I was tired tonight; second night out and I k new I would sleep well! Soon I was drifting off to the sound of the wind in the rocks…ZZZZZZ
I was rudely awoken by the rain at 4.30am. It was lashing it down; the winds were howling and I was a little concerned about thunder. I could swear there was a rumble but it could’ve been the wind. I snuggled down and surprisingly fell back to sleep till 7am! Great J
It was lot fresher!!!! The storm had thoroughly cleared the air. The wind was cool and fresh and the sky was cloudy but the air clarity was perfect.
I had only brought a cereal bar for breakfast… I had my coffee and then reluctantly got out of my bag. It was time to move! The air was so much cooler and I shivered as I stood up. It doesn’t take long to take down the Southern Cross luckily and I was packed in no time and heading off the fell. I descended the way I came.
A great couple of nights was had!