Monday, April 6, 2015

Red Pike

from the top of Red Pike looking over a cloudy Ennerdale Valley.  Yesterday's Crag Fell sticking out through the clouds.

Plan for today was to try to get some decent mileage in.  Setting off from Ennerdale, trying out a new track over to Buttermere and then back over Scarth Gap into Ennerdale with the option of a valley bottom run or, if we were feeling really energetic, climbing up Black Sail Pass and along the tops.

Setting off from home, it looked like the cloud was very low.  Good opportunity to practice map reading I thought.  It turned out that the cloud would burn off (although it seemed to sit over Ennerdale all day).  From Bleach Green, we ran around the shore line and picked up the footpath over to Flouten Tarn and down into Crummock/Buttermere.  It soon became apparent that it was going to be a hot day.  We ran along the Crummock Water shore line path for a bit and decided to climb up Red Pike via the steep path through the woods.  This seemed a better idea than carrying on to Scarth Gap.  The Climb up to Red Pike did us in.  It was hot.  This is always a steep climb but I can usually manage it ok.  Maybe I was still a bit run down but by the time I had reached the top, I was all up for taking the shortest way back.  Options were to drop steeply into Ennerdale from Red Pike or from a bit further along between Red Pike and Starling Dodd.  Another option was to go over the tops of Starling Dodd and Great Bourne and pick up the track from Flouten Tarn that we had said all the way up would be a good run down.  We planned to do the latter but a twisted ankle and boulder to the ribs from Jonathan, along with sore feet from me helped us to make the decision to walk the last three or so miles from Starling Dodd.

Starting out at a cloudy Ennerdale, it was pretty much the same view when we got back

claggy over the Flouten Tarn route

but clearing up as we reached the crown of the track.  That's Flouten Cop on the left.

views got better as we descended towards Crummock Water

Crummock Water now in view

From the Crummock Water shoreline track, we continued on and climbed the steep track through the woods up to Bleaberry Tarn and on to Red Pike.  Being Easter Sunday, we met some people with little awareness of where they were.  "Does your map show an easier way down?" one of them asked.  I thought of the route over the top of Red Pike and down towards Scale Force.  I tried my best to explain that it was still a tough climb to the top of Red Pike and there was greater chance of them getting lost and suggested they go back the way they came.  When we stopped for a rest just beneath the last scree climb of Red Pike, it did look as though they had started to follow us up.  Oh well.

Bleaberry Tarn from about halfway up the final climb

Jonathan's facial dexterity sums up how we both felt at this point

topless sunbather on Red Pike summit

looking back towards Red Pike.  If you look carefully at the rocky patch, you might be able to see one of Jonathan's ribs

Starling Dodd, looking West

encroaching carpet or lovely Wild Ennerdale

Jonathan was excited to find some easter eggs

1:50k OS Map

1:25k OS Map

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