Saturday, March 31, 2012

Cold Pike, Crinkle Crags and Bowfell - March 2012

A walk Jonathan and I had been planning for some time.  Crinkle Crags is a lot of fun, I've done it before, so wanted to do it again and blog it to cross it off the list.  We also took the opportunity of bagging Cold Pike and Bowfell, another place that is lots of fun.

dry Oxendale Beck and a cloudy view towards Crinkle Crags

We set off from the New Dungeon Ghyll Hotel.  We might have been better setting off from the Old Dungeon Ghyll Hotel but the walk along the road was quite nice, looking up towards the Langdale Pikes, picking out climbers on the rock.  Eventually, we crossed Oxendale Beck and began climbing.
Steep climb up Browne Howe towards Red Tarn before turning right to bag Cold Pike.  Langdale Pikes behind Jonathan.  Pike of Stickle on the left and Loft Crag on the right.

first view of Crinkle Crags and the path leading there.

looking back from the climb up Cold Pike.  Red Tarn visible below to the right and Pike of Blisco taking in most of the picture in the middle.

Crinkle Crags and Bowfell.

Crinkle Crags and Bowfell from Cold Pike summit.

and again.

heading towards The Bad Step which is visible in the middle left of this picture
not that bad of a step really.  You have to scramble a bit here but there are plenty of hand holds.  You can also go around if you are not confident.

top of Crinkle Crags looking towards the Scafells.

Scafell, Mickledore, Scafell Pike all visible with Bowfell far right

up on Crinkle Crags

Close up on Scafell Pike (centre), Scafell to the left and Ill Crag to the right


Climbing Bowfell now

the Great Slab - great fun

Jonathan on top of Bowfell

Scafells again from the top.  Mickledore clearly visible here.

more Great Slab.

Bowfell Butress

looking out over the path over The Band with the Langdale Pikes beyond.
back on level ground now, Wrynose Pass in view here
3d route map

map and elevation

10 miles in total. Three Wainwrights.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Swim Progress - March 2012

Here are the goals I set for myself at the start of the year.  I'm not trying to reach them all this year but want to work towards them as much as possible.  Take particular notice of the swim goals:

I've made progress.  Last year I was swimming with a nose-clip because I could not stop water from going up my nose when I put my head under the water.  I struggled to do two lengths of my pool (40metres in total) without stopping.  Not that long ago, 100metres or 5 lengths was a difficult, but maybe achievable goal.  I gradually built up my distance, eventually reaching 400metres, or 20 lengths.  I was very happy with the 400metre distance because this is the distance of some sprint triathlons.  My time of 10-11 minutes was pretty slow compared to those I had seen when looking at results of triathlons but I was getting the distance in.

A few weeks ago, I went to a swim clinic at my local swimming pool.  The idea is that you have a swim and a coach will give you direction and advice if that is what you wanted.  I'm quite anxious about new social situations and so it took quite a bit of nerve for me to go.  I was really glad that I did, I was pleased to see that I wasn't the worst swimmer there and that it wasn't as bad as I thought it might be.  I asked the coach for some advice and got some - I was generally pretty good but try to slow down the kicking of my legs.  This uses up a lot of energy and means that you are less streamlined in the water.  I gave it a try, I tried a few lengths with a pull-buoy between my legs and I wasn't sure whether it felt better or not.

I kept trying to use my legs less and kick more gently when swimming and seemed to be making progress.  On Thursday, I was on a training course.  The evening before we had been on quite a gruelling fell run and so a swim was the perfect form of gentle exercise.  The training finished a bit early and so I got to the pool when it wasn't busy.  I thought I would see how I felt, got in and swam.

And I just kept going:

Yep, I've made progress.  Time to set new goals I think.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Fellrun Blake Fell and Gavel Fell - March 2012

Last night's run around Cogra Moss, up Blake Fell and Gavel Fell.  Some lovely weather conditions we are having at the moment, apparently not going to last until the weekend so the only thing to do was get a run in after work.  The clocks had sprung forward the previous weekend so we had until approximately 7.30pm before it was dark.

Path up from Cogra Moss to the side of Knock Murton.  This is as far as I thought I could run but when I saw how much further it was to the level track, I thought that I should have toughed it out.

The path we were aiming for going horizontally across under the tree line of Middle Fell.

A forest track.  Much of the first part of the run looked like this.  This photo was taken while running so I have an excuse for the blurriness.

After a couple of miles on the forest track we started the climb up to Blake Fell.  This is looking back with Knock Murton on the right and Banna Fell to the left.

Jonathan on top of Blake Fell

Views from Blake Fell Summit - left to right Whiteside, Grasmoor, Melbreak in Front (look for the M shape) Fleetwith Pike is visible on the horizon in the middle then it looks like the High Stile range and Ennerdale peaks of Pillar etc beyond.

Whiteside, Grasmoor over Crummock Water with part of Melbreak on this side of the lake on the right.  I think that's Skiddaw visible over the top of Whiteside on the left.

running down from Blake Fell behind towards Gavel Fell.

In the direction we are going - Great Borne directly in front linking to the left to Starling Dodd.  Pillar is visible behind Starling Dodd with the col of Wind Gap to the right of the peak.

Summit of Gavel Fell looking in the same direction Red Pike and High Stile range now visible as a continuation of the line from Starling Dodd.

looking West over Saddler's Knott and Banna Fell.  This is the way we headed.

more summit dorks.

after a real slog through brambles, we eventually got back onto a nice grassy field and then onto the roads.  We still had a couple of miles left and it was starting to get dark now.


Here's the stats:

Back to the car after about 9 miles.  Really good run, curry on the way home restored the balance.