One of the greatest pleasures of living in Cumbria is Saturday breakfast, not because I have anything exotic, but rather because of its simplicity; coffee, a map and the wonderful anticipation of where we'll be headed this weekend.
After a long and, usually, hectic week at work, Saturday breakfast is the time I can catch up with myself whilst the rest of the house is quiet. Monday - Friday usually sees me zooming around different parts of Lancashire and occasionally beyond, but Saturday and Sunday are mine and on Saturday morning I get to plan what we'll be doing.
The kettle goes on and 5 maps come out of the bookcase. Why 5? Well there are the 4 OS Maps for the Lake District plus the tourist A-Z Map which is fabulous because it covers the entire region on one side and gives me a clear idea of how long it will take to get to where. We've been up here over a year now and we know the main routes so these days I use the A-Z more for picking out the smaller passes and short cuts.
Once I've homed in on somewhere suitable then out comes an OS Map (or two depending on where I've homed in on.) and the real planning begins. Usually by now I'm on to my second cup and a little toast and my feet are itching to get into my boots. This time of year I'm looking for a fairly straightforward and relatively short (4 - 5 hour) route up a peak we've never done before. We're not trying to bag all the Wainwrights as such but we do like to go somewhere different each weekend.
Route sorted, coffee finished and toast crumbs tidied, now it's time for the real fun to begin. A little faffing and then we're away. Just perfect.