June’s here and it finally felt like summer might be on its way as I planned our penultimate training hike. I selected a Lake District route around the Langdale Pikes and Bowfell , armed myself with a map and compass and arranged with Paul and Debbie to meet at 9.30am at the New Dungeon Ghyll hotel. Jeff wasn’t free to join us this weekend but we’ll get the whole team together for one last walk next weekend before we head out to Tanzania.
It was a little overcast but presently warm as we set off , each of us enjoying being able to wear just T-shirts. I led the way out of the car park and with minutes we were onto the pathways and picking our way along and up a rocky climb alongside a stream. After about 30 mins of hard work we were all hot and ready for a rest as we came up and over a crest to see the Stickle Tarn. This wasn’t in the plan but I’d manage to take us up a more northerly track. Still it was a pleasant place to stop for a snack and drink as we studied the map and worked out a revised route. I’m definitely going to book myself of a navigation training course when I get back from Kili.
We left the tarn for High Raise to the north and climbed over some very wet ground and ten onto some pretty steep slopes. We stopped off at Sargent Man to take a rest and shelter from the wind and have a drink. We were rewarded with stunning views to the south and east over the Lake District and out over Morecambe bay as we basked in the sun’s warming rays. On went the fleeces as we got back into the wind and made our way over to High Raise’s trig point.
We then turned south west and headed down to pick up the Cumbria way foot path with the intent of looping over to Angle Tarn. However we missed the path and so ended up carrying on to follow stake gill as if flowed own into Mickleden Beck at the base of the imposing Langdale fell and its many stony crags. Our knees were glad to find the valley floor (sometimes going down is just as tough as going up) and we waked parallel to the Beck as it led us back the last few miles to the car park.
At just over 8 miles this wasn’t a massively long walk but it had a lot of steep ascent and descents which all help work the muscles we’ll be needing for Kili in a couple of weeks. I’ve post some photo on the Kilimattjaro facebook page and the climb stats and map.