Friday, 14 December 2012

A year in the Lake District (Part 1 Jan - Jun)

I can't believe it's December already!  As we've been sorting out our admin and filing photos for the year I thought it might be a nice idea to take you through the highlights of the year month by month.  Many people only visit Cumbria during the summer months but, as you'll see from the pics, the weather can surprise us at all times of the year, and there's always something to do.

January

The year kicked off with a chest infection for me, but it didn't stop me sneaking up Crinkle Crags on a particularly stunning morning.

Crinkle Crags

Having started to get my "snow legs" we made the most of the conditions and gave Helvellyn a go.  The shelter wasn't much use mind...

Helvellyn Shelter

Deciding to stay a little lower our next hike took us to Holme Fell and Black Crag.  Stunning location with fab views of 3 lakes - and pretty impressive sunlight.

Black Crag sun
And lastly for the month a wonderful visit to Great Rigg and Alcock Tarn,  You can see from the tarn how peaceful and still the day was.

Great Rigg & Alcock Tarn

February

We enjoyed Crinkle Crags so much the first time that we went back again - though this time via a different route.  This is a fabulous shot Steve got from Three Tarns.

Three Tarns over to Scafell Pike


We got to grips with inversions and caught a few fabulous ones in Feb, after an early start on Gummers How this was the last of the mist disappearing from Loughrigg.

Loughrigg mist

March

March started off much the same way as February ended, but things were about to change.  Not before we'd enjoyed a long day hiking Fleetwith Pike with a night-time finish over Haystacks.

The sun about to bid us farewell...

Later in the month the weather improved dramatically and we enjoyed a few days up at Wast Water.

Picnic lunch on Ill Gill

The next day we headed over Yewbarrow.  Imagine, Yewbarrow in March in T-shirt & shorts!

The other side of Yewbarrow

April

We started April of in pursuit of Swallows & Amazons along the banks of Coniston Water and enjoyed glorious views of the fells.

View from Coniston Water

Easter found us looking at birds of a whole different kind as we admired this unusual plantation in the other Borrowdale valley.
Is it a bird? Is it a plane?

Cumbria Wildlife Trust held an open event at the nature reserve on our doorstep - and it would have been rude not to attend, especially with everything coming into bloom.

Blooming lovely!
And we finished the month with a fabulous hike over Stoney Cove Pike where I spent too much time admiring the frogspawn and mudcracks!

View down to Brothers Water

May


Well, May was a busy month as I was writing for Berghaus and trying to cram in lots of adventures.  Here's just a glimpse of what we did.

A blistering hot day & a lap of Haweswater

After a hot lake next up was a cool roof and some wonderful limestone formations.

Hutton Roof Crags
And then I got to meet one of my heros at the Keswick Mountain Festival...

Chris Bonnington & simpering fan.
...before relaxing on the wonderful Walney Island.

Oyster catchers over Peel Castle
The biggest adventure by far was a descent of Lord's Rake.  Scary and only to be attempted (by me) very slowly and on my backside.

Small person.  Big mountain.

June

To be honest, the weather in June didn't bode well and our street was unfortunately flooded.  We escaped, but some of our neighbours weren't so lucky.  The spring in our garden only bubbles into life after torrential rain and it was going full tilt for around 12 hours.

Lots and lots of water.
Thankfully things were a little drier when we went to see the Red Arrows at the Whitehaven Festival.

The amazing Red Arrows.
We also spent a wonderful afternoon on Foulney Island watching Terns and Kestrels fighting it out.  Sadly the Kestrels appeared to be winning...

Kestrel - on the lookout for more Tern eggs.
And like thousands of others we celebrated the Queens Diamond Jubilee.  A beacon was lit up on Hampsfell and it turned out to be the most glorious clear evening with a stunning sunset and a wonderful full moon.

Standing on the hospice watching all the nearby beacons being lit.

So, that's the end of Part 1.  Part 2 will be up and running tomorrow and will take us from Olympians to Murmurations.