Jan 13 20
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We met up with our friends from Leeds, Helen and Kris, for a winter-walk up Wetherlam via Wetherlam Edge. Wetherlam Edge is a steep rocky path in summer, but in the frozen snowy conditions we’ve got in the Lakes at the moment, especially with the strong freezing wind from the east, it promised to provide some interesting and bitterly cold sport…

Getting kitted up with crampons and axes ready for Wetherlam Edge

Getting kitted up with crampons and axes ready for Wetherlam Edge

Wetherlam Edge

Wetherlam Edge

Pete, Helen, Kris, and Laetitia on Wetherlam Summit

Pete, Helen, Kris, and Laetitia on Wetherlam Summit

The entire area around Coniston is peppered with old mine workings. As we passed the vertical sided cleft of one adit descending back to Tilberthwaite we were drawn by the beautiful icicles dripping down the walls and the perfectly frozen flooded floor. On inspection of the interior of the adit one 15 metre ice fall draped on the rock looked climbable! Crampons back on, ice axes drawn, and off I went soloing the route on thin but perfectly clear water-ice and nice hooks on the quarried rock. Almost certainly a new route, but not one I think will attract many repeats – the fun being in the snatched solo rather than the quality of the line.

An irresistible fall of ice inside one of the mine adits

An irresistible fall of ice inside one of the mine adits

Descending back to Tilberthwaite

Descending back to Tilberthwaite

After that there was just time for a posh slice of apple and toffee cake and a cup of tea at Cafe Treff in Ambleside before Helen and Kris had to head off back to Leeds.

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