BB0825 : The Big Wind-Up

Wedmesday 23rd July 2008

I must go down to the 'Pool again,
to the lonely sea and the sky.

And all I want is a tall ship,
and a gps to steer her by,

And all I ask is a merry yarn
from a laughing fellow-rover,

And quiet sleep and a sweet dream
when the long trick's over.

 With apologies to John Masefield


It all started with a bit of a wind-up.

Given that next week is the rescheduled “big one” to Scafell Pike, clearly a serious training run was required today.  In planning a route, I thought it would be a good idea to help Tony and Stan finish off the Eastern Fells book.  After a bit of thought I sent them, and Bryan, the following message:

Forecast for Wednesday looks ok.  Thought we could do with some altitude.  Found a good walk to link up Glenridding Dodd (Stan), Hart Side (Tony) and Hartsop Above How (Tony) thereby completing the book for them both.  Involves the Kirkstone Bus.  Only 14 miles and 5,600 feet so quite good training for the big one.

Bearing in mind that firstly that our highest ever height climbed is “only” 5,056 feet when, after a lot of training, we did the Helvellyn ridge last year (BB0713) and that secondly the Scafell Pike route is “only” 9.6 miles and 4,667 in ascent, I thought they would realise that this was a wind-up, intended to produce a two worded response from Tony.

Where I went wrong, was to issue the e-mail and then disappear for a few days down to Liverpool to watch the Tall Ships.  We were very lucky; we had a grandstand view of the events from the riverside garden of Margaret’s cousin Dinah and husband Alan.  Some of those boats are massive.  Over 100 yards long and a crew of 200!  



Sadly, there was not much sail on view as they paraded along the Mersey.

When I returned from Liverpool, I discovered the wind-up had completely backfired on me. Tony had sent the predicted two-word message, complete with asterisks.  However he had then sent a further message opting out of such a strenuous outing.  Bryan, on the other hand, thought that for once we were going to have a decent day out and was quite looking forward to the trip.  I was in danger of having my bluff called.

With little time left to retrieve the situation I phoned Tony only to discover he was out fishing.  Or as it transpired, sat on a canal bank for hours until it was well and truly dark, not catching any fish- which seems to be the norm these days.  I left a message for him that an opt-out was not permitted but a route change could be considered.  Fortunately he got the message and the situation was retrieved.  The learning point is that if you are going to wind people up, you must stick around to deal with the aftermath.  Not disappear to Liverpool for three days.  


Glenridding Dodd

The forecast was for a cloudy start but with the clag to burn off quite quickly.

Confident that summer was here at last, we slapped on the suncream before setting off from Glenridding carpark.  


The first objective was Glenridding Dodd. It is only a low peak but needed by Stan to complete the Eastern Fells and a seriously steep climb first thing in the day. 


Ullswater from Glenridding Dodd


Glenriiding Dodd from Heron Pike

Next came Sheffield Pike via Heron Pike, again quite steep but much easier going up than I had found when descending it in BB0632.  It was warm but not sunny and the suncream was mingling with sweat and running down into my eyes!

Heron Pike from Glenridding Dodd

On the way we encountered a sole walker who was carrying little on his back but a considerable bulk hanging out on his front.  We thought he would be easily reined in, but not so.  All credit to him, for a man of such shape he moved remarkably well.  He too was Wainwright bagging and had only 19 left.  Imagine the speed he might move if he shed three stone!


Two -Pole Tone


Hart Side ditch team picture

After bagging Hart Side to leave Tony (or “Two-pole Tone” as he has become known after experimenting successfully with twin aids to climbing) only needing Hartsop Above How for his completion of the Eastern fells, we lunched in the ditch near the summit.  


Bryan's quiet sleep and sweet dream

There was quite a cold breeze blowing but in the ditch it was calm.  So much so that, briefly, the sun threatened to make an appearance and the drone of Stan and Tony reminiscing about their newspaper rounds allowed Bryan to slip into a "quiet sleep and a sweet dream" well before the long trick was over.  

Clearly he had needed the "merry yarn" of Philip’s tales of being the “Newspaper Boy to the Stars”.  

Maybe next week? 

The weather surprised us as it went into reverse with the clag starting to form around the tops again.  

Stybarrow Dodd from Hart Side

By the time we reached Stybarrow Dodd it was quite thick and I became somewhat disoriented looking down through a gap to where I though Ullswater should be only to see the end of a lake that I eventually realised was Thirlmere with Bassenthwite in the distance.

 Stybarrow Dodd from Raise

The route over to Raise is now a motorway until you reach the rockier part on the summit.  We had a brief pause at the cairn and then set off in a continuation of the direction in which we had arrived.  Bryan was circling a little to the left calling on the clouds to lift to give us a good view of Swirral Edge.  We could see the path continuing ahead, a bit further to our left and dropped down to it.  However, although we were out of the mist, and could see the track off left to Glenridding, there was still no Swirral Edge.  Then it dawned on us.  That was not the track off left to Glenridding but the track off left to Thirlmere.  In the mist, we had made a 180o error and had actually circled around the summit of Raise to descend to the path by which we had arrived.

No, we had not been lost!

But, temporarily, we had not known where we were.  Situation rectified, we headed back to Glenridding via Sticks Pass- a minor variation on our originally intended route.  There is a learning point here, however.  When in mist, take and follow a bearing until you find your objective.

After last week’s report BB0824, I was taken to task for forgetting to make mention of a wildlife incident of a deer bounding in front of the car on the way home.  This week’s wildlife incident was on the descent of Raise- a puddle full of tadpoles.




Industrial Scars

We passed through the extensive industrial wasteland wondering what had been mined to make such devastation.  It turned out to have been lead.


Looking back to Raise and Sticks Pass


Kidsty Pike

The best view of the day was of Kidsty Pike as we dropped down to the mine working buildings (now mostly institutional holiday dormitories) with its impressive flood management gully.  

We thought it worth revisitng this during a deluge.  

By car of course!

Near the village of Glenridding there was an unusually decorated cart just inside a field gate,

It was still a disappointingly grey day that had not lived up to its promise but had served its purpose as a worthwhile training exercise for the “Big One”.  Though no doubt the Wind-up route would have proved even better.  

If survived!

Come back when it's raining!

Reverting to the Liverpool visit, it is now ten years since I worked there and it is amazing how much the city has changed.  From the river, the skyline now has several monsters partially obscuring the view of the Liver building (and of my old office in the Royal “Sandcastle”) and more planned.  

The town centre is moving down towards the waterfront to be integrated with the Albert Dock, which has changed from being full of tat shops to an upmarket café culture zone.  Much development has taken place alongside, the most striking being the new Arena and conference centre.  That horrible walkway over the Strand has been removed, radically improving the view of the three “Graces” from the road.  

More controversial from a Kendal viewpoint is the extension of the Leeds Liverpool canal to bring it along the front past Pier Head to end at the Albert Dock.  Whilst an imaginative scheme in its own right, this has unfortunately been at the expense of reopening the northern reaches of the Lancaster to Kendal canal.

Don, 23rd July 2008
Thanks to Alan for two of the Tall Ship photos




10.4 miles

Height climbed:

3,299 feet


Glenridding Dodd, Sheffield Pike, Hart Side,
Stybarrow Dodd, Raise


If you have Memory Map on your computer, you can follow our route in detail by downloading BB0825.

For the latest totals of the mileages, heights and Lakeland Fells Books Wainwrights see: Wainwrights.

If anyone wants to claim other peaks, please let me know and I will submit them to the adjudication committee!


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2008 Outings

  • BB0801 :
    Avoiding the Graupel;  
    Wednesday 16 January
  • BB0802 :
    Lyth in the Old Dogs;
    Tuesday 22 January
  • BB0803 :
    That's Lyth;
    Sunday 27 January
  • BB0804 :
    Tony's Memory Lane;
    Wednesday 30th January
  • BB0805 :
    Fell's Belles!
    Thank You Mells
    Wednesday 6th February  
  • BB0806 :
    The Langdale Skyline
    and a Fell Race!
    Wednesday 13th February
  • BB0807a:
    An Outbreak of Common Sense;
    Thursday 21st February
  • BB0807b:
    Askham Fell and
    the Lowther Estate;
    Thursday 13th March
  • BB0808
    Thanks to the MWIS
    Wednesday 19th March
  • BB0809 :  
    High Street and Kidsty Pike
    but no Fairy
    Friday 28th March
  • BB0810 :  
    Prelude to Spring
    Wednesday 2nd April
  • BB0811 :  
    Spring in Lakeland
    Sunday 6th April
  • BB0812 :  
    Wet, Wet, Wet Sleddale to Mosedale Cottage
    Thursday 10th April
  • BB0813 :  
    What's It All About, Tony?
    Thursday 17th April
  • BB0814 :  
    The Hidden Mountain
    Tuesday 22nd April
  • BB0815 :  
    The Bowland CROW
    Thursday 1st May
  • BB0816 :  
    High Cup Nick:
    The Gurt La'al Canyon
    Wednesday 7th May
  • BB0817 :  
    Travelling Light
    Wednesday 14th May
  • BB0818 :  
    Pensioners’ Day Out
    Thursday 22nd May
  • BB0819 :  
    The Northern Tip
    Thursday 29th May
  • BB0820 :  
    The Bannisdale Horseshoe
    Wednesday 11th June
  • BB0821 :  
    Black, White or Grey Combe?
    Thursday 19th June
  • BB0822
    Thunder on the 555
    Thursday 3rd July
  • BB0823
    We'll Give It Five
    Thursday 10th July
  • BB0824 :
    Shelters from the Storm
    Thursday 17th July
  • BB0825 :
    The Big Wind-Up
    Wednesday 23rd July
  • BB0826 :
    Tony’s Third (and wettest) Alfie
    Wedmesday 30th July
  • BB0827 :
    A Visit to Mud Hall
    Tuesday 19th August
  • BB0828 :
    The Tale of Randy Gill
    Tuesday 27th August
  • BB0829 : Mosedale Cottage Revisited
    Wednesday 3rd September



  • BskiB08 : Bootski Boys in the Sella Ronda  
    23rd February - 1st March


Click on the photos for an enlargement or related large picture.



Bryan has kindly produced a log of which Wainwrights have been done by which BOOTboy in the "modern" era, i.e. since the advent of BOOTboys.  

To download the Excel file click on Wainwrights.  

If anyone wants to claim other peaks, please let me know and I will submit them to the adjudication committee!


BOOT boys

This page describes an adventure of BOOTboys, a loose group of friends of mature years who enjoy defying the aging process by getting out into the hills as often as possible!

As most live in South Lakeland, it is no surprise that our focus is on the Lakeland fells and the Yorkshire Dales.

As for the name, BOOTboys, it does not primarily derive from an item of footwear but is in memory of Big Josie, the erstwhile landlady of the erstwhile Burnmoor Inn at Boot in Eskdale, who enlivened Saint Patrick's Day 1973 and other odd evenings many years ago!

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