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: Rubber Sole
10th October 2013
I think of Bowfell, I can't help morphing the Beatles
ma belle, sont des mots qui vont très bien ensemble.......
is a fine hill. The highest non-Monro in England,
dominating the upper Langdale valley, the tops of which
we are progressively visiting to fulfill John Hn's objective.
few months back, the logistics of reaching the start
point might have been challenging for a largish and
disparately dwelling BOOTboys
group but now that I can drive my car, it is less of
a problem. It was great to be back behind the
ferrying wheel, taking the troops to the Old Dungeon
Ghyll National Trust Car Park. Unfortunately my
card for free parking was out of date but luckily John
had a spare. Note to self- check date next time.
Band; Crinkles to the left, Bowfell peeping to its right
passing a new project for Tony, we set off up the Band
only to be overtaken by a lady fell runner and her dog.
James took one look at her and stated "I
think she's Norwegian. Would anyone like to bet
on it?" Seeing as there was no chance of catching
her it seemed a rather redundant question.
bit further up we saw a shepherd sat with his four dogs.
He explained that he was waiting for his sheep.
They were being brought back from the other side
of the fell. We saw quite a large flock being
driven by a girl. "Is there anybody going
to listen to my story?" he asked. Most of
us made a hasty departure but Martin indulged him for
a while. until he realised that he would be there
for the duration if he didn't catch us up fast.
there anybody going to listen to my story?
about the sheep who came to say!
led us to the climber's traverse where a decision had
to be taken. Whether to proceed to the Great Slab
or take the simpler, less exposed route directly upwards? Stan
explained the difference and told the group "You
have to think for yourself which you would be happier
doing". I have been on the Great Slab previously.
That was not the problem. It's the traverse
that I don't like so was quite happy to go directly
upwards. "If you're at all uncertain,"
I told the others, "Just say the word and be like
me". I added that although the weather was
so fine, it's sunshine but the wind was gusting strongly.
Roger and James joined me. John and Martin
Great Slab from above
and Roger on the safe route
route was more bouldery than I had anticipated. Awkward
but not dangerous. It was a bit of a surprise
to me that we summitted first. What a viewpoint
it is especially of the two Scafells.
And Blackpool Tower, of course.
and Scafell Pike
south to Blackpool. Can you see the tower?
Langdale Valley down to Windermere
lunched behind rocks out of the wind just below the
summit then debated where to go next. The consensus
was to drop down to Ore Gap then past Angle Tarn and
up Rossett Pike to claim a second Wainwright, albeit
a relatively minor climb from the tarn.
eyes tend to water up in the wind and in such circumstance,
if have remembered to bring them with me, what goes
on are my balaclava and my goggles. Bryan, were
he accompanying us today, would have despaired and
said "You won't see me wearing anything like that".
But he wasn't with us and today's team were more
my eyes now non-watery, I had to thank my goggles. "I'm
looking through you and thanks to your orange tinge
the world looks hot and summery".
think some of them were actually secretly jealous.
without Wings! Geddit?
Pike across Angle Tarn
Great Slab from Angle Tarn
across Angle Tarn
Valley from Rossett Pike
we had claimed Rossett Pike, Stan, who doesn't like
to retrace his steps, suggested we continued north-east
to drop down to the Stake Pass watershed. When
I pulled out my map, Stan asked what was I doing? I
explained "I'm looking. Through you, we will be
going a longer way round. Also you have to be
a bit careful here not to venture directly east as there
are steep drops involved". At this point
we met a youth who also had his map out but seemed confused,
saying " I seem to be going nowhere, man".
I explained where he was and the safe way off,
suggesting he came with us. Stan suggested a more
exciting route and somewhat to my surprise and concern
the youth chose that way.
we continued to the top of the Stake Pass as planned
then began the long descent down to the Old Dungeon
Ghyll. Once out of the wind and into the sun,
what goes on comes off. Goggles, Balaclava, Gilet,
and eventually gloves.
were cracking on when suddenly James called a halt.
He has been away so much this year. I remember
the text he sent me from the plane saying "it's
been a long time, now I'm coming back home, I've
been away now, oh how I'll be out with you soon".
He had gone on to add about his lack of fitness. That
seemed to have returned today so it was a bit of a surprise
when he called "Wait". What he wanted
was another drinks stop so we obliged.
back up Stakes Pass
down the long valley we then walked with increasing speed
as the ODG grew ever nearer. Stan and I were beginning
to race each other. "I can beat him anytime"
he boasted. Roger and others cheered me on by shouting "Run
for your life, if you can, little Don". So
I did. Until it dawned on us why they were so
keen on this competition. First to the bar gets
the round in? Suddenly Stan and I stopped
racing. To be fair, James then insisted it was
talk over a pint (or two) turned to us encouraging John
and James to do all the Wainwrights. We looked forward
to being their support team. John's response was touching.
He said that "If I needed someone to lead,
you're the ones that I'd be thinking of. If I
needed someone." James wasn't in a hurry
but conceded that it was "Something I'd like to
do in my life."
there we are, that's all fourteen of the
Rubber Sole songs somewhat torturously worked
into this report. Some more than once. Did you spot them all?
Answers next time.
"Rubber Sole?" I hear you
"Don't you mean Rubber
I don't. Given the forecast earlier
in the week of snow, sub-zero temperatures
and frozen ground, I had suggested to the
boys that they bring microspike crampons.
we need them?
All we needed were boots with a rubber
10th October 2013
Bryan Got The Hump
two thwarted attempts to summit Mount Khuiten,
it's no wonder Bryan got the hump. Twice.
as readers of his Altai Tavan Bogd
know, Bryan really enjoyed his Mongolian
adventure despite twice being frustrated by adverse
team leader, Tom
has written an expedition blog with photos
featuring our intrepid BOOTboy.
find out more, click on the two-humped camel.
seeing the BB1334
report, John S wrote to say:that he had
not noticed Stan's foreshortened right leg
before now. He added:
kerbs are are helpful in allowing Stan to
adopt a perpendicular and balanced gait
but how does he do so well on the fells?
he keep his right leg up-slope?
of course, that would mean having to walk
backwards where the hillside sloped from
left to right in the direction of travel
- and that is only when traversing.
does he cope when going directly up or down?
It's a mystery!
other BootBoys can explain?
naughty colleague provideed a dubious answer:
do you think his hands were in his pockets?
He was trying to find his pole
10th October 2013
climbed in feet:
(Memory Map / OS)
Don, James, John Hn, Martin, Roger
routes are put online in gpx format which
should work with most mapping software. You can follow
our route in detail by downloading bb1335 .
discover which Wainwright top was visited on which BB outing
- although it may not be that up to date - see: Which
For the latest totals of the mileages and heights (ditto) see: BB Log.
have been gleaned from many sources although mostly
from me! Likewise written comment. Unless stated
otherwise, please feel free to download the material
if you wish.
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