Islands in the Sky with Brocken Spectres
High Street via Gardiner's Grind)
1st February 2006
We wanted a relatively easy walk so Stan
advocated Angle Tarn from Low Hartsop and Pete and I concurred. However we had a rather inauspicious start
with a record minimum of less than 100 yards travelled before the map had to be
consulted. Given that the forecast was
for a dry day but with cloud up to 700 metres, it would be necessary to pick
something quite high to catch the sun.
This led to a change of plan and a route passing by an icy and misty
Hayeswater and up Hayeswater Gill onto Racecourse Hill. Easy, said Stan. And he was quite right. For a couple of
miles. And then the final assault turned
into something that Bryan would have been proud to see us tackle, at which point
Stan confessed he had never been that route before. Stan romped directly up the hill like a
Hardaker Gazelle whilst Pete and I took a more measured angle with frequent
pauses. Stan consoled us with the fact
it was a virgin route so we named it after him- Gardiner's
Grind (see also BB0605).
As we neared the top, the mist thinned and
with the sun streaming down from the col we had our first "Brocken spectre"
projected onto the cloud below us. And
then suddenly the struggle was over and we entered a mystical world of strange
islands floating in a sea of clouds.
Luxuriating in the sun and warmth we made our way to the High Street trig
point for a leisurely lunch and then north, still enjoying
the bizarre views all around to the Knott where there were rude shadows
plus more and even better Brocken spectres to amuse
High Street Summit
Descending from the Knott, we had a decision
to make. Whether to resurrect the
original plan to go by way of Angel Tarn or head on down to Hayeswater? Given that there was no sign of the cloud
lifting we decided we would save Angle Tarn for another day and headed on down
into the fog and near artic conditions, taking it in turns to take pratfalls on
All in all, it was a most unusual and
memorable day, thanks to the weather conditions. And to
navigation over some of the steepest terrain I have yet encountered!
For more information on Brocken Spectres see Brocken
High Street, The Knott
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- BB0631 Coppermines
- BB0630 Relocation,
- BB0629 Stone Arthur and a Mystery Plume
- BB0628 Knocking off Wainwrights. Oh! Plus Skiddaw!
- BB0627 Blencathra
and the Mungrisdale Round
- BB0626 The
- BB0625 Les
Garçons de la Botte
- BB0624 The
Crookdale Horseshoe and then some
Selside Pike revisited
Round the Dunny!
The Malham Experience
Old Man Succumbs!
QH2QH High Street (the length thereof)
High Street Racecourse
Well, Well, Well, Wansfell and Troutbeck Tongue
Yewbarrow and a history lesson
Clough Head and Great Dodd
The Corpse Road and beyond
A Bit on the Side.....
Angle Tarn with Surprises!
Cragg via Dovedale
in the Sky with Brocken Spectres
Street via Gardiner's Grind)
Holme Fell, Black Fell and Electric