Monday, 28 July 2014

In Short - Holiday Debrief: A Week and a Half in the Lakes



So it turns out that 10 nights in a tent is hard graft. I think my limit is probably closer to 5 (6 at a push). But nonetheless, the holiday was pretty... um... interesting.

Within the first four days alone we had:
  • Food poisoning
    I think. Actually to this day I still don't know what caused me to spend the 8th classily puking behind the tent.
  • Explosive nosebleeds. 
    And lots of them.
  • Nearly getting stuck on Hardknott Pass
    Doing a hill-start on the steepest road in England because of some moron not understanding the purpose of a passing place was not fun for Sam, nor for me (who has a history of not enjoying that road to begin with).
  • FIRE!!
    Flameless cookboxes are not as they seem (post to follow).
And after that we had:
  • Me habitually throwing soup/noodles everywhere
  • The fact you can't get a decent pasta in the Lakes. Petty, but gods I missed pasta.
  • Purposely going before the summer holidays to avoid school kids... so an entire school appears at the site.
  • Sam coming down with whatever it is he has towards the end of the holiday.
  • Fucking Maryport


But there were loads of awesome things as well...
  • Easy drive up, listening to Alan Partridge
  • Seeing half a dozen hawk jets over the first few days - and a Hercules!
  • Side Pike. Always.
  • Sam winning undisputed best person by looking after me when I was gross and pukey.
  • Splurging at the Herdy shop - I got loads of bits for the new flat.
  • So Mickleden is lovely
  • Discovering the "bunny nursery"
  • Sunset over Blea Tarn
  • Waterhead times
  • Bumping into 4 baby bunnies on the way to the loo at 4am(!)
  • Lingmoor Fell was nice
  • Illgill Head! My highest hill yet! (even though the view was definitely not as expected :p)
  • Ravenglass - Eskdale Railway
  • Cow and Herdy traffic jams
  • Being by the sea, surrounded by beached jellyfishes.
  • The Strands Inn in Nether Wasdale is awesome. Pity we only found out on the last night. 

So while I reckon we'll be saving up for a cottage stay the next time we fancy more than 5 nights in the Lakes, it was still a pretty decent holiday on the whole.

Plus, Sam and I spent 10 nights together, living in a tent, and still don't hate each other. So that's a good thing to take away if nowt else. :p

Now that I'm back and procrastinating both work and packing for the big move to Sheffield, expect many photos from the most beautiful place on Earth. 

I'm sorry/you're welcome.

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Grindsbrook Clough in the Sun

Now there's a sentence I'd never thought I'd write.

As I mentioned a bit ago, back in May I did the Grindsbrook Clough route up Kinder Scout for the third time - and for the first time with decent weather!



This was also my first time out on the hills with my gorgeous new camera (aka. love of my life. Sorry Sam.) so there are plenty of photos with ridiculous filters over them thanks to the "art" settings.



Filter faffing aside, it was a pretty standard walk - even if it did take me a while to readjust to hiking in the warm (so sunburned).



Those of you who have been reading the blog a while will know that I'm not great at coping with streams - even though I've done ghyll scrambling and rock climbed up a waterfall, I still panic ferociously when confronted with stepping stones.

So I was really happy and impressed with myself on that day. Okay I still panicked, but by the end of the watery bit of the route, I'd stopped overthinking things, being too scared to jump, and reaching frantically for Sam's hand/shirt/hair every two minutes.

Well. Mostly.






The only things particularly annoying about the day was the fact that it was so bloody busy. Sam's schedule meant that it was that Saturday or bust if we were going to hike that month (!) and of course the good weather brought people - walkers and tourists alike - out in droves. While I'm not good with crowds, I don't mind people per se, but one of the reasons I love hiking is the tranquility in nature

...Ok the main reason I don't like busy hills is because no one needs to see me sweaty, red, and out of puff. Never mind randomly-occurring crowds.

But the quiet is nice, too.



After the walk, we wandered back to Edale and parked ourselves at the Rambler's Inn (where we spent a great deal of time when we visited for my birthday last year). It was ridiculously busy, but luckily for us we were ready for a break from the sun, and the inside was basically empty.

So we had an awesome dinner of steak and ale pie (the first one I've ever bought - clearly gearing up for moving back to Yorkshire!), and cider - which I drank without blackcurrant! Amazing! Here's the proof...

(note: Sam would never order a half, so this is obviously mine)

Then it was off to get the train back to Manchester. We were happy to see it was a few minutes delayed as we would have missed it otherwise... We were then less happy when the delay went up to 25 minutes... and then the train itself didn't move for another 30.

But it wasn't all bad - we ended up sitting with an old man and his awesome Bernese Mountain Dog who took a shine to Sam. Sam now wants a Bernese Mountain Dog.


So all in all, a pretty decent day.