: That's A Lyth Record
31st January 2010
was still dark, with the temperature a few degrees below
freezing, as I set off to walk the mile or so to the
Scout Hut for the start of the 2010 "That’s Lyth"
Challenge Walk. For some reason it seemed much further
than I expected and I found myself jogging to try and
get there for 7:45. Along the way I started passing
people who were clearly doing the event and had opted
to start a bit early!
hut was jam packed when I arrived, as people delayed
going out into the cold as long as possible. After registering,
I sought out Stan. We quickly decided that the cold
was preferable to the crush and so went outside.
met his son, Martin, and his mates, who were dressed
for speed rather than warmth. Martin was posing in his
bright yellow Jungfrau tee shirt. He asked us what our
target time was and I said we were hoping we might break
4 hours. He looked astonished, but wasn’t going to challenge
two Bob Graham men! Clearly the thought of being passed
by two old men must have made them push on as they eventually
finished in 3hours 58mins.
for the start
our way out of Kendal
was breaking as we set off and by the time we had completed
the first half-mile the lead runners were out of sight.
The route climbs over Kendal Golf Course when the first
views of the snow covered Lakeland tops come into sight.
was designated photographer for the day and quickly
began to find that each time I stopped to take a photo
the gap between Stan and myself grew rapidly and I had
to jog each time to catch him up.
the golf Course
3 miles (and runners!)
3 miles or so we dropped off Cunswick Scar
into the Lyth valley via Gamblesmire Lane.
tried to jog the downhill stretches where
possible, but this track was quite icy in
places and slowing up more cautious walkers.
was in competitive mode and burst past a
group of 4 people. It took me a little longer
to get past and by the time I did Stan was
well out of sight. I eventually caught
up 2 or 3 miles later near Underbarrow.
this time positions for the day are more or less established.
You pass people only for them to appear in front of
you again an hour later. They must have passed but you
can’t for the life of you remember when!
1 was at 7 miles. The venue had changed following the
disaster with the school last year. (BB0904)
This time it was at Crosthwaite Village Hall and
there was plenty of hot tea and refreshments –
I particularly enjoyed the jam doughnut.
was here that Stan first became aware of a middle aged
couple (this is Stan’s optimistic description. Personally
I thought they were more our age – elderly!). One of
them had a yellow cagoule and the other a sore toe apparently.
They were to feature prominently later.
miles done – where is everybody?
reaches Lords Seat – top of Whitbarrow Scar
next few miles passed without incident. It’s a steady
pull up from the Lyth valley on to Whitbarrow Scar,
but once on top the views to the Lakeland Fells, the
Dales, and out over Morecambe Bay were superb. The weather
had been near perfect so far for the event. The mud
of previous years was frozen hard and all that was missing
was the sun. This duly arrived as we descended through
the woods to Witherslack Hall.
comes out at the half way point
in on a doughnut at Witherslack (CP2)
next stretch seemed to drag a bit before we reached
the road and could smell the tea brewing at Checkpoint
2 in Witherslack Hall. This was manned by my next door
neighbours, so it seemed only polite of me to have a
sit down here, drink a second cup of tea, and have extra
cake and biscuits – after all it’s not a race - is it?
Estuary – Ingleborough in the distance
next 4 miles involve a lot of road and track
walking and our feet were beginning to feel
the battering a bit. But the sun was out
and we made good progress to Levens and
the final checkpoint in the garage of a
house at Cotes Corner. They are so nice
to you at this stop, but the down side is
that there are usually some seats and I
am always tempted to sit in one. No problem
until it’s time to get up again, when your
legs immediately let you know that you’ve
just walked 18 miles!
stop was a relatively short one as Stan had noted “yellow
cag and sore toe” set off. We were on home ground now
as we headed up through Brigsteer Park, but complacency
is a dangerous thing when you’re tired. We were wandering
along putting the world to rights (over the course of
23 miles an awful lot of things get “sorted”!) when
we absent-mindedly followed the main bridleway towards
Sizergh for a few hundred yards before realising our
rectify this we took a direct line towards Helsington
Church, keeping to the trees as much as possible (well
it just wouldn’t do for people to think that Kendal
folk could go wrong on their own ground!). When we regained
the route, we waited for a following walker to take
a team photo.
miles done – Comitibus
across the Lyth valley to the Lakeland fells
views at this stage were stunning as the afternoon sun
was just starting to set. A quick look at the watch
suggested we could possibly beat 7 hours so we put a
bit of a spurt on. Our diversion meant we had lost sight
of our yellow cagoule marker and Stan was beginning
to wonder if we had somehow passed them as he couldn't
believe they could be in front if they were only walking.
as we set off into Kendal down Brigsteer
Road we could see two people, one of whom
was wearing a yellow cagoule, jogging down
the hill in front of us.
was what Stan had been wanting all day –
proof that he wasn’t being beaten by two
people (one of whom was a woman for goodness
sake) who had only walked the route.
has form in this regard. His pursuit of
the large lady on BB0803
has become part of BOOTboys
comes into sight – 21 miles
fact that they were jogging spurred him on and we eventually
caught them and exchanged some banter about the tactics
they had used to stay in front. Stan pushed on. He wanted
to put some distance between himself and yellow cag.
Presumably memories of "BB0803
large lady" staging a comeback still haunt him!
final burst to pass another walker who we
had not seen since before Cinderbarrow (this
is not a race!) got us to the finish in
6 hours 40 minutes – a new BOOTboys
record. I was fairly pleased with the time.
I wasn’t as fit as I had been in previous
years so anything under 7 hours would have
been a good one for me.
personal aim had been not to be any slower
than last year (despite being a year older),
so finishing 20 mins inside last year's
time was a satisfying result for him.
we sat eating our soup we were joined by “yellow cag
and sore toe”. We discovered they were from Southport/Preston
and had been doing the event so long they could recount
when Fred Hodgson's house at the foot of the Scout Scar
road had been a checkpoint and they used to stop there
for tea and buns. In those days I used to run it and
remembered that the route had changed that year and
used Frank’s house because of the snow that prevented
road access to some of the checkpoints.
excellent day. Now all we need is a hard year’s training
and that sub 4 hour might just be possible!
31st January 2010
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Scar (Outlying Fells)
Scar, Cunswick Scar, Lyth Valley
tracklog this time. For map see BB0803.
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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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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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
Saturday 30th January
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!