A weather window opened up so on Friday evening I headed to Threlkeld in the van to sleep at the start of my planned Lake District walk and wild-camp. The route (see right) would take me from Thelkeld Mining Museum to Ambleside. I chose the route because of the long ridge, the possibility of camping at height and the ability to get a bus back to start at the end of the weekend.
As I started off the tops of the fells were being kissed by cloud.
But this rose as the day went on and by the time I reached 800 m the cloud was above me. The air was much clearer on the Sunday, but here are some highlights from day one.
My chosen night spot was Nethermost Pike (890 m). The classic place to camp would be next to Grisedale Tarn (2 km further on), but I wanted a wilderness experience (as far as this can be possible in somewhere as popular as the Lake District). Nethermost Pike is pretty much flat topped, but there is a slightly (6-8′) lower plateau on the Eastern Edge and with the wind coming from the West it was slightly sheltered. Also it offered a better view from ground (my kitchen / bed!) level.
It was really glorious on the Sunday morning with only the Herdwick for company, the air was clearer and I didn’t see a soul until I descended to Grisdale Tarn to collect some water.
After a longer than expected detour to take in the top of St Sunday’s Crag I had my lunch on top of Fairfield and then started the descent via Hart Crag, Dove Crag then High and Low Pike into Ambleside. There I was able to celebrate with a pint of Windermere Pale from the Hawkshead Brewery. A great example of a modern British pale ale
The whole route totalled 23 miles with only 6000′ of height gain. Next time I’d like to tackle it in the winter.