Saturday, 13 August 2016

Pasture Beck Round

It's been a busy few weeks, what with attending Piratemania, Geolympix and the North Wales Mega so despite the forecast being for cloud with possible rain most of the day we decided we were ready to bag a few Wainwrights and even better, our daughter Beth wanted to come along.

As we set off from Cow Bridge Car Park I wasn't in the best of moods, I'd had a 'challenging' week at work and a late night last night and when the alarm went off at 5am it was a bit of a struggle to get up to say the least, I really could've done with another hour or so.  It's funny though because as we started our walk I thought how rubbish my week had been with one thing and another and as we started the ascent up towards the summit of Hartsop Dodd in the strong wind and rain I had a bit of a tearful moment as I mulled things over and I considered going back down but after a big hug off my lovely daughter and a bit of a talking to I decided to carry on with the walk and there's the funny thing, by the time I arrived at the first summit and bagged our first Wainwright of the day I felt so much better, it was like a weight had lifted and I decided that in actual fact the week hadn't been that bad after all, just challenging really.  So when people ask me why I love walking so much well that's why, I find it uplifting and the best cure for stress.

Setting off from Hartsop

Anyway enough of all that and on with the walk.

Here's an overview of the route:

Cow Bridge - Hartsop - Hartsop Dodd - Stony Cove Pike - Thornthwaite Crag - Grey Crag - Hartsop - Cow Bridge

Looks like a steep climb
A gentle ascent up the north ridge to the summit of Hartsop Dodd which is marked by a stick by the wall, not very impressive but it marks the highest point of the fell.

Summit 'stick'

Visibility was quite poor as the cloud was very low but the forecast had promised it would clear up by mid-day so we were hopeful of some good views before the end of the walk.

That was our first Wainwright of the day in the bag.

As we continued to Stony Cove Pike there weren't really any views to be had as the cloud was so low and we could barely see the summit cairn as we approached but the walk itself was easy enough.

Once at the summit we took a very short detour to the geocache (1 of only 2 on the walk).  That was Wainwright #2 of the day.  We didn't hang around long here as the visibility was poor and getting worse.  Then it was onward to Thornthwaite Crag.

The path down was a tricky scramble on wet rock.  I really wasn't prepared for how difficult this was and at times felt out of my depth due to not being able to get a good foothold on the slippery rock but we took it slowly and eventually made it to Threshthwaite mouth unscathed.

Then after a brief cuppa we started the very steep ascent up the scree path on Thornthwaite crag.  This looked a lot worse than it actually was.  It was very steep but easy enough and I was glad we were walking up rather than coming down that way.

The summit is marked by a very impressive 14ft cairn named Thornthwaite Beacon.  This was Wainwright #3.

After this we continued along to Grey Crag.  This section was like a walk in the park and we soon arrived at Grey Crag summit cairn.

Grey Crag
After this the descent back down to Hartsop was straightforward and we were soon back on flat ground and back to the car.

The walk was just under 9 miles long, thoroughly enjoyable. 

Our route

Then it was off to Ambleside for pasties from the Apple Pie Bakery.
Saw this in a shop window in Ambleside, sums up the day perfectly

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