Friday, 5 July 2013

3 Peaks By Bike - Day 3: Scafell and on to Prestwick

A decent morning at Wasdale Head
A very early start to today but Wasdale was still fairly busy with fell runners (apparently some were up and down Scafell Pike around the 2 hour mark! Impressive) and marshalls for what appeared to be leg 2 for numerous Fire Service 3-peakers.

Thankfully the low pressure weather system and shifted eastwards and patchy high clouds allowed rare glimpses of the Scafell summits. The route up from Wasdale Head is fairly short but relentlessly steep. My legs felt a bit stiff for the first half of the climb and so I just settled in to a steady plod as far as Hollow Stones by which time I'd warmed up nicely and the legs began to feel good.
View up the Mickledore scar

Patchy sun
The summit was deserted save a couple of marshall's recording the Fire Service 3-peakers and a  Scandinavian lad trying to fit in as many Wainwrights as possible over a few days. Bruce's knee had started hurting (sounded like tendonitis to me) near the top and he was wincing in pain on the descent. Not fun. He wisely decided to knock the subsequent cycling on the head in order to protect his knee for Ben Nevis.
An unusually quiet summit cairn on Scafell Pike

A splash of colour on a drab grey summit ;-)

Traversing the boulder field to the top
My cycle to Prestwick was long and a bit of a blur really. Much of it was on main roads with surfaces as rough and pock marked as an acne-ridden teenagers face so my focus rarely got a chance to move towards enjoying the views. The A76 was particularly miserable!

Energy levels were dwindling around Thornhill and for the first time on the trip I resorted to a can of Relentless energy drink with about 35-40 miles to go. Boy, did it do the trick. My legs were GO, GO, GO after that!

My tired legs rolled in to Prestwick around 9.45pm at the wonderful Appletree Guesthouse. A friendlier B&B you would be hard pressed to find. They knew I'd be on the road by 6am the next day and so happily made a packed lunch for me to take along and told me to help myself to any breakfast before I set off. They also advised on routes towards the Erskine Bridge. I forgot about this the next day (I blame this on tiredness) and wished I had paid a bit more attention! We'll definitely stay there again should we visit the area.

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