: The Most Perfect Winter Day
7th January 2010
Year. Out with the old and in with.......?
actually, more of the same. Magnificent wintry weather,
that is. Those BOOTboys
still at home (as opposed to those who, like me, were
experiencing the joys of foreign travel) understandably
grabbed every opportunity they could to take advantage
of the finest snow that the Lake District has seen for
many a year.
Fell across Dunmail Raise from Raise
Tarn from the slopes of Dollywagon
went solo up Helvellyn on Monday 4th January. He
a cracking day on Helvellyn today 4th. Went up from
Dunmail Raise. Rang Stan the night before to see if
he fancied it but he had other arrangements. I couldn't
go too early so it needed to be a brisk one - I didn't
set off from Dunmail until 11:30 and was back at the
car by 3:00.
will have recognised Striding Edge in full winter conditions
with an alpine looking Catstye Cam in the background.
Spot the person on the ridge (double click on
the picture to enlarge). The photo with me on it
was taken by this bloke
who'd just done the Edge from the summit down to Red
Tarn. He'd intended to return via Swirral Edge but said
the conditions on Striding were so good he turned round
and went back along it!
thought I might have a crack myself but by the time
I got to the top of the gully where it starts, the mist
had closed in. Also, time was limited so I decided against
it. A bit like the Leeds game (versus Manchester United), by
deciding not to invest £45 in a ticket,
I might have missed the chance of a lifetime!
weather closes in
was up there the next day.
Helvellyn from Thirlspot and back via Wythburn last
Tuesday (5th) just after the last snowfall - wonderful.
Climbed Dollywagon from Dunmail on Sunday and skied
down, Jamie and his mate boarded it. Great fun, but
tricky standing up near the top. Used crampons on skiboots
which worked fine but the weight made it hard work -
still, burnt off some calories. It reminded me why you
spend £200 on a week's skipass!
first official BB outing was on Thursday 7th and had
easyJet managed to fly us back from Nice to Liverpool
on schedule the previous day, I would have joined the
team. However, amidst all the chaos, the best they could
offer us was Gatwick, maybe, and then we would be on
our own somehow to get back to the north or alternatively
they would fly us back to Liverpool in a week's time!
Yes, that's right: a week!
whilst the boys were out in the sun, we returned to
hang around Nice airport flirting with British Airways
before eventually flying with the very nice Swiss Air
people, firstly to Zurich and then on to Manchester.
Somehow, we got upgraded to business class and
Margaret, normally a nervous flyer, enjoyed the experience
so much that Swiss is now her carrier of choice!
Lakeland from Kendal Golf Course
told me that he and Bryan crossed Kendal Fell to go
out to Cunswick Scar then walked south, the full length
of Cunswick and Scout Scars, before dropping down to
Brigsteer, climbing back up via Barrowfield,and finally
passing over the old racecourse back to Kendal.
call it a glorious day is an understatement. It
was the most perfect winter day I can ever remember
on the Scars with outstanding snow covered views in
all directions, but particularly of the lakeland fells
- sod's law that we didn't have a camera with us, but
no doubt if we had the results would have been a disapointment.
Scout Scar Mushroom
saw a runner and two or three walkers on
Cunswick Scar and then no one else till
we got to the Mushroom.
from two girls out jogging the only other
person we saw was the farmer feeding his
sheep at Barrowfield who was surprisingly
talkative for a farmer asking us "Is
it slippy underfoot?"
replied that it wasn't too bad but we didn't
envy him having to negotiate the icy Barrowfield
panorama from Kendal Golf Course
road stretch down Brigsteer hill was treacherous for
walking. The previous day's fresh snow had covered the
sheet ice underneath. Part way down we saw a set of
car tracks which veered off the straight line and went
straight into the embankment. Close to them was a set
of tractor tyres from the vehicle which had obviously
been used to pull it out. We were speculating on how
anyone could possibly think this was driveable only
to see a white van man come tootling up the hill. Minutes
later a Nissan Micra came tootling down. Either very
good drivers or, as we thought, very lucky ones!
Bryan had been on the scars a day or two before with
Liz in similar conditions and had remembered his camera
on that occasion so those are pictures we have used.
was out again in the snow on 11th January with a warning
for those going on BB1002:
out with Steve V on Whinfell today. Conditions are a
lot different to when we were up there on the 10th December
Generally it's pretty hard going. Snow is still pretty
deep and unconsolidated. The second big fall we had
is sitting on top of the first lot and has not consolidated
due to the lack of a thaw / freeze. Consequently small
slabs were breaking off and sliding away on the steeper
ground going up form the road. Classic avalanche conditions,
particularly as it warms up. Be careful on route choice
V practicing with crampons on Castle
V wading through snow on Ashtead Fell
heeded the warning. See BB1002.
concluded report BB0901
with this comment on New Year Resolutions:
I hereby undertake
not to mention the name of James Gordon Brown again
in these columns during 2009 or for such time as he
remains The Great Leader if that period (fingers crossed)
proves to be shorter.
of you (if any) who remain of the faith will be pleased
to know that I intend to repeat that pledge for this
other resolution is to complete the Wainwrights. Having
only 38 left to do, it could be a close call as to whether
this resolution will be fulfilled before events release
me from the first resolution!!
17th January 2010
If you want to comment on this report, click on
7th January 2010
Scar, Scout's Scar
you have Memory Map on your computer, you can follow
our route in detail by downloading BB1001.
Steve G advises: "For those who like to look at your
meanderings but use Tracklogs or other software then your logs can be converted
using the freeware utility GPS Babel."
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!
E-mail addresses on this web site are protected
Spam Trawlers will be further frustrated
help fight spam e-mail!
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!
If you want to contact us, click on
If you want to join
let us know and
of new BOOTboys reports.
Thursday 14th January
A Snowy Equipment Test
Thursday 21st January
Leave It To The Professionals
Thursday 28th January
That's A Lyth Record
Reasons To Be Cheerful
One, Two, Three
Thursday 11th February
Can You See Clearly Now?
Thursday 18th February
In Memory Of
Almost a Mountaineer!
The Beginning Of The End
Thursday 11th March
The Free Men on Tuesday
We'll Get Them In Singles,
The Fools on the Hill
The Windmills on the Moor
By Lake, Ridge and Wainwright
The Ten Lake Tour (+5Ws)
The Kentmere Challenge
Saturday 24th April
Winter in Springtime
Thursday 14th May
Saturday 30th January
Click on the photos
for an enlargement
or related large
Click on the photos for an enlargement or related large
download a log of which Wainwrights have
been done by which BOOTboy
in the "modern" era, i.e. since the advent
click on Wainwrights.
anyone wants to claim other peaks, please let me know
and I will submit them to the adjudication committee!