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Borrowdale trip report


posted by Dom Cozzi on 2014-02-04
Destination: Langdale
More information about the Langdale trip

After the copious amounts of cheese, wine and other gastronomic fancies combined with the inevitable laziness of Christmas, what a joy it was to be back in the beautiful Lake District. Especially after 4 weeks in the flat and frankly unhikeable Cambridgeshire countryside! It was time to kick off our packed Lent Term calendar with our first hike of 2014 and where better to bust those January blues than the stunning Borrowdale Valley. Recently, I've been trying to tick off some of the lesser known Wainwrights and so teamed up with Harry to tackle 4 peaks I'd scarcely heard of... splendid!

I'd got some new boots over the holidays and couldn't wait to break them in and so after munching up my habitual pre-departure pork pie, the day began. Starting our day from Rosthwaite, we headed South to tackle our first peak of the day: Eagle Crag. Although a mere 503m, it rises dramatically up from the landscape and walking along the valley, the imposing fell looked almost impossible at first, but a winding ascent through the crags afforded us a scenic route to the summit. The weather was surprisingly kind to us, and good visibility at the top was greatly appreciated by all, especially by Harry who got to give his new gadget, some binoculars, a try. As we rested for a moment, Gregory pensively reminded us that some of the world's greatest thinkers, writers and artists were all taken by the beauty of the fells and the words of Wainwright sprang to mind...

"Eagle Crag is so splendidly situated, so nobly proportioned and of so arresting appearance that it is a far worthier object than the parent fell (High Raise) rising behind"
After a quick break, we stayed high and continued South along the ridge to reach our second summit of the day, Sergeant's Crag. Despite only being at 571m, this is the highest we would reach all day! We had a decision to make over lunch as to our routing for the rest of the day. We could either immediately descend into the valley to head back North or stay high and walk all the way around the ridge along a slightly trickier route just below the snow line. In the end, we decided on the latter and carefully made our way around to the other side of the valley. We continued past the path up Ullscarf, where the other group would eventually end up, crossing over very boggy land, with several of us getting quite soggy feet, a good test for the new boots! Eventually we reached the third summit of the day, Great Crag. It was at this point, that I decided to put what I've learnt from Emma into practice... it was the perfect time to share out the Fuzzy Peaches, delicious Canadian sweets courtesy of Marguerite! They went down quite a treat and gave us the last burst of energy needed to bag the fourth and lowest summit of the day, Grange Fell.

There was the tempting proposition of possibly nipping up Castle Crag (The shortest of the Wainwrights at 290m), however with the ever fading darkness and tiring limbs, we resigned ourselves to the pub for a well earned pint... always the best way to end the day! Overall, a fantastic start to the new term, with some new hills to tick off my Wainwright map. Thanks to Harry for leading, Ivar for driving and everyone else for their sparkling company. VP: Over and Out.