I am still alive! Not been out in the Lakeland hills for a while as I have been skiing on some bigger hills in Austria! But I am back now and plan to get cracking on with the challenge.
Apologies for some of the photos in this entry. I messed up some of the settings and don't have the time to fix them on Photoshop!!
I started from the car park in Lanthwaite and headed up the path towards Whin Ben.
Looking towards Whin Ben from the car park
The weather was great, with practically no wind and the sun giving a pleasant warmth, so very different from many of my walks so far this year! As I made my way up the steep but clear path the vuew behind of Crummock Water were amazing.
A very still Crummock Water with Mellbreak in the background
Looking over Whin Ben to the reflection of Mellbreak in Crummock Water
It wasn't long before the step scree path began to level out and I made the first Wainwright of the day - Whiteside.
Looking towards Hopegill Head from Whiteside
From Whiteside it was a really nice path along the ridge to the top of Hopegill Head, the second Wainwright of the day.
Grasmoor from Hopegill Head
From Hopegill Head I headed down the clear path over Sand Hill towards Coledale Hause.
Looking back towards Hopegill Head from Sand Hill
I was planning to meet some friends who were on a stag do on top of Grasmoor. As I was making good time I decided to walk up to Wandope before going up Grasmoor.
Crag Hill from the summit of Wandope
It was a short walk back from Wandope to the main path up Grasmoor. It was a steady pull up a well worn path, but is wasn't long before I made it to the top. The views were great from up there.
Grasmoor Summit shelter
Loweswaer from Grasmoor
Buttermere from Grasmoor
As found a grassy spot to lie back and wait for the guys to turn up. It was so warm and sunny up there, I didn't mind waiting. I drifted off a few times and was really enjoying the peace up there. After over 3 hours, I was wondering where they had got to, and I finally got through to them. They had gone back down and not let me know!!
So much later than planned, I head back down to Coledale Hause and then took the path down Gasgale Gill to the car. The winter rains haven't been kind to this path, there was a lot erosion and the path had a lot of detours, but after a while I made it back to the car.
With forecast for clear sunny skies, I was somewhat disappointed when I opened the curtains in the morning to be greeted with low cloud. But the bag was packed and a meet time was arranged, as once again I was joined by Sarah for today's walk.
As we headed down Dunmail Raise the sun was burning off the cloud and it looked like it was going to be as good a day as forecast.
Steel Fell from the Ghyll Foot
From Ghyll Foot we headed up the first Wainwright of the day, Steel Fell, as the picture above shows there wasn't a cloud in the sky. Just goes to show the early bird doesn't always catch the worm! If we would have started earlier this would have still been in the cloud I think.
The gentle path up Steel Fell
The path was a good one going up Steel Fell, a nice long steady climb. However there did seem to be an awful lot of false summits, which allowed for lots of pictures to be taken along with the rest stops!!
Looking across to the Hellvelyn range on the way up Steel Fell
We also had the opportunity to see the rest of the days walk across the valley.
Helm Crag (The Lion and the Lamb)
Finally the top of Steel Fell comes into view
After a while the top of Steel Fell appeared and it wasn't long before we were at the top enjoying the stunning views. There were only a few patches of snow lying about, the sun shinning on the south facing slope had melted most of it.
Steel Fell with Thirlmere in the background
Steel Fell cairn with St Sundays Crag in the distance
Me on Steel Fell
Sarah on Steel Fell
After a sandwich and some flapjack it was time to head towards Calf Crag. On the way we passed a number of small unnamed tarns, all of which were completely frozen over. There was also a lot more snow and ice on the northern facing slopes, including a great slide down a slope on some hard compacted snow!
One of the many frozen tarns
The area was boggy, but frozen enough to be able to make a fairly direct route to the top of Calf Crag without getting wet feet.
It was a reasonably short climb to the top to reach the top of the second Wainwright of the day.
On the top of Calf Crag
From Calf Crag it was a really nice walk along the ridge heading towards Helm Crag via Gibson Knott. As we walked along we could see Morecambe Bay in the distance and could also see Easdale Tarn which was frozen over.
It didn't seem to take long before we on the third Wainwright of the day, Gibson Knott. We had another long rest stop here as the views were so good and there was no wind so wasn't cold at all. After looking at the watch we decided we should get going again as we wanted to get up Helm Crag before the sun went down.
We passed to path back down to Ghyll Foot on the way up the steep but short climb to Helm Crag.
Helm Crag is also known as The Lion and the Lamb as it the rocks look like a ion and a lamb from the valley. It isn't so easy to make it out from the summit, but it didn't matter as the views were great!
The Lion and the Lamb, with Grasmere in the distance
From the top we retraced our steps back to the little saddle and down the grassy slope back to the car. An excellent days walk completing another 4 Wainwrights.
When I got home I realised I was my head was glowing rather, yes I have my first sunburn of 2010!! Don't expect to be needing sun hat and cream during March in the Lakes!