BB0601 Ingleborough

12th January 2006

Bryan had prepared two interesting wet weather lake district routes but on the day, it seemed that the problem would be wind, not rain.  Indeed the MWIS warned that on ridges and south facing cols "you could be blown over".  However the BBC weather forecast suggested that the sun might shine not far to the south or east of Kendal.  So, which way to go was the dilemma as Stan and I arrived at Bryan's house.  The problem was resolved easily by one telephone call.  From the wife.  "Don- you've forgotten your sandwiches".  Well that settled it as far as I was concerned- head south for the sandwiches and keep on going.  And that is how we ended up attempting Ingleborough.  Not just attempting this time- no diversions to Whernside- pure focus on Ingleborough.

We parked at Ingleton and set off up the Fell Road, past the very lonely house at Crina Bottom and carried on up the hill.  The surface changed from cart track to, bizarrely, sand.  The footpath for a very long way was coated in deep sand, which actually made progress quite hard work.  All the signs of running shoes in the sand reminded me of Herb Elliot.  And then it turned into a cobbled staircase.  I must admit I found this ascent hard going- too much Christmas left in my legs. I could see this huge mass appearing out of the mist on the left hand side but it never seemed to get any smaller.  On reaching the top there was a bit of a frost, a lot of mist and a bitterly cold wind.  Not quite "blow you over", more "blow right through you and freeze your veins".

However, we had a secret weapon- a portable coffee shop.  Or more like a giant orange cape intended to house three people and their rucksacks in comparative comfort and warmth.  At least that's what the salesman said.  Well, I can vouch for the warmth bit.  Comfort- debatable. Stan reckoned I had my boot up his bum to which he responded by placing his firmly in my goolies.  And certainly no room for rucksacs.  Or perhaps we just don't have the technique- must practice in fine weather!

Portable coffee shop at Ingleborough summit!

Inside the coffee shop

Perhaps foolishly, we decided to abandon the portable coffee shop and use the wind shelter near the summit for our lunch break.  I can't remember when my hands were last so cold.  I couldn't get my winter gloves on at first and when I did I had to take them off to open my sac and drop my lunch on the ground.  Then Bryan asked me to pass him the map, which I did but unfortunately it was the south-east lake district.  Yorkshire map still in the car.  As Ming might have said, it was becoming one of those days.

Undeterred, Bryan unerringly guided us through the mist to the Pennine way descent, which was mighty steep but a damn sight warmer than on top.  

We contoured round Black Shiver, with good views over to Whernside and the Ribble viaduct to rejoin the track down to Crina Bottom and eventually the car.  

By this time the sun was trying to come out as you can see from the 1.5 mile post photo.

1.5 mile post

All in all a rather more challenging expedition than I had anticipated for the first of the year but enjoyable none the less.  Distance 7.65 miles, 2,165 feet of ascent.  I just need to do Pen-y-Ghent now to complete the Yorkshire hat trick.

12th January 2006


7.65 miles

Height climbed:
2,165 feet

Map reference:
See Map



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