Garburn Pass & Trowbarrow

Saturday – Garburn Pass Mountain Biking

The weather on Saturday was cold and showery. So after a late start and some essential household chores had be achieved (including second breakfast and a café latte 😛 ) we decided the best way to get some fresh air and exercise was a ride on the mountain bikes. We’ve been out on the bikes a few times in the past weeks so our legs are a bit more used to the pain, and our bums are a bit more used to the saddle, so we decided to go over the Garburn Pass and descend towards Ings. Wow, the slog up from Kentmere to the col at the top of the Garburn Pass is a killer. I was knackered. We were even overtaken by a fell runner. But we did manage some overtaking of our own, passing another pair of cyclists.

The Garburn Pass used to be a really rocky and technical descent. However, its been significantly improved and levelled. Not so much fun from a technical point of view but a good deal safer and a whole lot faster! 😮 Not that it was possible to go at full-speed as the slate used to improve the trail was very wet. We even had a snow storm going over the col!

Laetitia successfully crosses the ford above Kentmere
Laetitia successfully crosses the ford above Kentmere
Laetitia on the fast, and much improved, Garburn Pass descent
Laetitia on the fast, and much improved, Garburn Pass descent

Here’s a GPX track of our journey…

garburn

Sunday – Trowbarrow Quarry

Sunday’s weather was much nicer. Sunny! 😀 However, it was still very cold so a sheltered and sunny location was required for the day’s outdoor entertainment. Trowbarrow Quarry is a little over familiar. But there’s a reason for that – it is sunny, sheltered, and has a selection of really great routes across a good range of grades. Perfect really.

The weather was a threat though. We could see intense storms rolling off the Lakeland fells, and every now and again we could just make out a few drops of rain in the air. We kept our fingers crossed and hoped the squalls tracked south and missed our location. Of course we couldn’t be lucky every time. One squall came right over us and for 30 minutes or so we were pelted with hail stones! Luckily I was at the top and missed having to climb in the onslaught. Looking down the route at Laetitia the crag had adopted a wintry look – all the edges and ground had become white, covered in a thick layer of hail stones. 😯 These promptly melted when the squall passed and the sun came out again. Then of course the rock became soaked. I sat on top, damp and cold, Laetitia stood at the bottom (wrapped in her duvet and waterproof jackets), wondering what to do next … the rock dried off … and we started climbing again! 😀

It was cold though. So much so that I think I put a fair bit more effort in to the climbing than I really needed to. This is something I’ve noticed I do often when I can’t feel my fingers, I pull extra hard to be certain I’ve really got hold of the holds. I can see that I’m holding on, but I can’t feel that I am. Anyway, today my arms and fingers are sore. 😉 A great day and adventure even in a very familiar location.

Sunny for now, but another hail storm approaches from the direction of Coniston
Sunny for now, but another hail storm approaches from the direction of Coniston

Yorkshire Dales Mountain Biking

We enjoyed our rideout in the Yorkshire Dales so much a few weeks ago that we chose that venue again on Sunday. More “Yorkshire Dales Mountain Biking”

Climbers’ Club AGM & Party Weekend

In my humble opinion last year’s CC AGM was a fantastic success. For me there are a lot of boxes to “tick” when deciding where to have the AGM. A location that offers: outdoor activities for all weathers and all pursuits; a quality indoor climbing wall that will join in the fun; an AGM and dinner venue that is big and comfortable enough and is able to provide good food; all that, and it needs to be relatively near to where a large enough number of CC members live. This isn’t an easy combination of attributes to put together. And unfortunately realistically there aren’t that many major climbing areas that can provide all of these ingredients. So this year the CC AGM machine made a repeat visit to Kendal. However, there’s likely at least two other venues that can also fit the requirements: Bristol and Sheffield. Watch out for where the AGM will go to next year…

Friday night, Hawkshead Brewery, Staveley – The President’s Quiz

Friday night saw the start of the opportunities to have fun with a light hearted quiz, with our President Richard as the quiz-master, at Hawkshead Brewery in Staveley. Amazingly Pete put in his best ever performance in any type of quiz; a winning score of 21 out of 25! Ye ha, a couple of spangly new colourful carabiners as prizes!

The President's quiz at Hawkshead Brewery in Staveley
The President’s quiz at Hawkshead Brewery in Staveley
Paul, Keith, and Pete debate the difficulties of Richard's quiz questions
Paul, Keith, and Pete debate the difficulties of Richard’s quiz questions

Saturday morning, Mountain Biking around Kentmere

Saturday’s weather forecast was quite pleasant. That is, pleasant in a particularly damp winter in a particularly damp part of the country, the Lakes. So rather than going to the indoor climbing wall in Kendal we opted for the mass mountain biking adventure around Kentmere, led by one of our Vice Presidents, Steve. I’m sure the wall would have been great – there were coaching sessions and climbing challenges with big prizes. However, the lure of the great outdoors was stronger for us…

The Mountain Biking team at the end of the metalled road about to set off on one of Kentmere's best circular trails
The Mountain Biking team at the end of the metalled road about to set off on one of Kentmere’s best circular trails
Single-track mountain biking in Kentmere
Single-track mountain biking in Kentmere
Richard, Steve, and Pete take a break before the final big descent back to Staveley
Richard, Steve, and Pete take a break before the final big descent back to Staveley

Saturday afternoon, The Climbers’ Club Annual General Meeting

Saturday afternoon was time for the AGM itself. There were some big issues to cover at this year’s AGM: a big rise in annual subscription charges to cover the rapidly escalating costs of running eight club huts; and Pete’s election to Vice President! 😯

The Treasurer, Becky Moore, outlines the running costs of the club
The Treasurer, Becky Moore, outlines the running costs of the club

Saturday evening, the AGM Dinner

The dinner at the Castle Green Hotel in Kendal on Saturday evening, organised by Alison Athroll and Steve Crossley, was of course another amazing party. The word must be getting around that CC AGMs aren’t as stuffy as they might once have been perceived to be – numbers were up significantly on last year.

CC AGM

Duncan Bourne’s artwork for the dinner cards were to his usual incredibly high standard! However, I was a bit shocked when people started asking Pete to sign it thinking it was supposed to be him! 😯 Of course it isn’t. But Duncan hardly helped when he started laughing and encouraging the notion! 🙄

The President, Richard Wheeldon, laying down the rules!
The President, Richard Wheeldon, laying down the rules!
The dynamic AGM Party organising duo, Steve Crossley and Alison Athroll
The dynamic AGM Party organising duo, Steve Crossley and Alison Athroll