And that is the point. In spite of suffering the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune (oh OK I know it's MY fault for continuing to use a crappy, albeit light, tent and, yes, I know it rains a LOT there) the Lake District is ALWAYS spectacularly rewarding for the walker and cyclist.
It's many, many years since I've climbed Scafell Pike and so I wanted to revisit it before next months 3-peaks cycling challenge along with @bruciestokes who is doing the challenge with me. Last time I did the full day route from Eskdale and so the route from Wasdale was unfamiliar and so it seemed a good
The location of the campsite also gave us the opportunity to explore Muncaster Fell. This has to be one of Lakelands best 'little hills' although we didn't have much of a view given the persistent rain from low scudding clouds.
Our route up Scafell Pike the next day started in pleasant sunshine from The NT car park at Wasdale but the view of the peaks themselves was non-existent and so we knew it would be cold and cloudy at the tops. We took the route up via Mickledore which involves a steep ascent up red scree about 2/3 of the way up the mountain. It's very hard work but affords you good views of Lords Rake and Scafell to the right. Well it would have done if we weren't in the clouds by that point. After following the cairn signed path to the summit and regretting not packing gloves we enjoyed the view (!) for a short while, forgot to drink the whisky from the hip flask, and imagined that, rather like the French, we were looking down on England. We descended down the main path to avoid the tricky scree on the Mickledore scar. Using walking poles seemed to definitely help my knees on both ascent and descent and I was absolutely fine the day after too. I don't like using them but this serves to show that needs must when the Devil takes a small crap on your musculoskeletal system!
I'm sure my rucksack felt heavier on the way back to Sheffield but then everything in there was soaked anyway so I'm not surprised. Definitely a sign of a typical trip to the Lake District.
|View over Eskdale from Muncaster Fell|
|View along Wast water to cloud covered Scafells|
|Most recognisable cairn in England?|
|What boots are for after a days walking!|