: The Squaw on the Hippopotamus
28 November 2019
will perhaps remember that the
squaw on the hippopotamus is
equal to the sum of the squaws
on the other two hides?
was the statement made by the
North American Indian brave
when asked about the relative
value of his three wives.
explained that loved them all
but one he loved twice as much
as the others. He had
bought her the special present
of a hippopotamus hide rug (sent
all the way from Africa) whereas
the other two had to make do
with rugs made of coyote skins.
least, that is mnemonic I recall
from my school days to help
remember Pythagoras’ theorem*
about triangles that incorporate
a right angle. In fact,
it had little to do with today
but angles definitely did.
this is a BOOTboys
report, it perhaps more properly belongs
to a different group of walkers with whom
Mike T regularly ventures forth. We
have met them before; firstly on the World
Naked Hiking Day (BB1820)
and more recently on the What Three Words?
were in short supply this week but Mike
had been deputed to set the walk for his
other pals and kindly invited us to join
them. This Martin and I did with a
degree of trepidation, partly because the
weather forecast was awful and partly because
we were aware from the previous encounters
that they are a bit younger and fitter than
us. We were worried about holding
them up. However, we looked at it
from the angle that if we were embarrassing
ourselves (and the reputation of the BOOTboys)
too much then we could always curtail our
participation and convert to some lesser
plan (or at least what he told us) was in
effect the circuit of Boredale, namely Beda
and Place Fells. The forecast was for northerly
winds up to 43 mph with a “feels like” temperature
of -4 degrees plus some rain, hopefully
clearing in the afternoon.
met at the Martindale old church.
team consisted of Mick, Dave
and Paul, whom we had met before,
plus Keith whom I have known
for many years but never previously
on the fells. I knew he
was fit (and comparatively young
by my ancient standards) as
he has just completed all the
brought his lovely Labrador,
Amber, to keep us company.
had my suspicions that all might not be
quite as expected when, right at the outset,
the decision was taken to attack Beda Head
by a path that climbed at a steep angle
as opposed to going up the nose from the
north as I had anticipated. Mike’s
boys set off at a brisk pace, rather more
demanding than a normal BB start. Martin
and I found it difficult to keep pace with
them. However they did stop frequently
which enabled us to catch up.
we had achieved Beda Head and were making
our way along the comparatively benign ridge
I heard two words that took me by surprise.
I had thought we would take the path
down to Boredale Hause. Indeed I am
sure that had been mentioned.
quietly spoken between them I could hear
mentioned “Angletarn Pikes”. Now,
I like Angletarn Pikes but they weren’t
in my prospectus for the day. But
we weren’t going to wimp out.
further took me by surprise was that the
line of attack turned out to be from the
south, i.e. we first dropped down almost
to Angle Tarn itself. I’m not complaining,
Angle Tarn is one of my very favourite tarns,
I just hadn’t expected it and the extra
the two short sharp climbs of Angletarn
Pikes were completed, we stopped in a sheep
fold for lunch before, at last, dropping
down to Boredale Hause.
path from the Hause, almost up to the Place
Fell summit is wide, well-trod and comparatively
easy going apart from its steepness.
managed to remain in the peleton for much
of this climb. There were spectacular
views back to the fells around Brotherswater.
I got somewhat burned off in the final sprint
to the finish on the top. However,
I knew the climbing was now over for the
observed that along the ridge was High Dodd
and that High Dodd was a “Nuttall”- (i.e.
a peak of 2,000 feet or higher) so that
had to be climbed also. To be fair
this was only a minor addition and did provide
a good viewpoint for the lower end of Ullswater.
taking the path angling down through the
bracken to the Boredale Beck, we were faced
with a decision.
we use the level but longer road route back
to Martindale and the car or should we start
climbing again and head over Howsteadbrow.
This would be much shorter in distance
but did involve a steep climb then descent
using a well-used path. You know what
the decision was!
confess that I felt rather fatigued when
we reached the car. At 9.1 miles it
was by no means my longest outing this year
but in terms of height climbed it certainly
was (and considerably more than I had anticipated
at the outset). However it had been
an enjoyable day in good company.
intended to round off the festivities at
the Greyhound at Shap but to our surprise,
it was closed. How about trying the
Barrel in Kendal, we wondered. We
did but it was closed also. However,
as expected, its near neighbour, the Tap,
was open. It was absolutely buzzing
with braves and their squaws. However,
from the angle we were looking we couldn’t
tell the sort of hide on which they sat.
Thursday 28th November 2019
The square on the hypotenuse is equal to
the sum of the squares on the other two