Another Dry Lakeland Bank Holiday

After an amazing start to the summer weather in May and early June, July and August have been quite disappointing really. More wet, grey, and disappointing weather days than the proper summer sunshine we had hoped for. 🙁 However, despite that we’ve been out and about on the Lakeland crags a fair bit. 🙂 Then, as luck would have it, the August bank holiday was again (mostly) dry and sunny. Unfortunately we’ve both been ill so this held back adventures somewhat, but not completely… More “Another Dry Lakeland Bank Holiday”

Coniston, RLH, and the New Langdale Guidebook

Despite the less than perfect forecast this past weekend was a particularly busy one with loads of diverse activities including:

  • an introduction to open water swimming,
  • enjoying excellent company and great food at the SMC meet at RLH in Langdale,
  • scrambling in the rain on Pavey Ark, and
  • the launch of the new Langdale guidebook.

Coniston Water

Laetitia has been enjoying her open water swimming this past summer, and now she has dragged me in too! “Dragged” is the right term for this as I can tell you getting in to the cold water of a Lakeland lake is not easy for a land lover like me. And to think the water is relatively warm at this time of year and real open water swimmers go in wearing just their trunks! :freeze: Anyway, I’m not a very strong swimmer but I had expressed interest in the activity from the point of view of enjoying another aspect of the Lake District’s beauty. Viewing the fells from the middle of a lake is wonderful. However, I do find it quite scary to think about the consequences of getting tired or cold so far from the shore and so totally out of my depth. So before my introduction in Coniston Water on Saturday I insisted we stop and buy a drag-along buoy for safety. It’s something to hang on to for a rest, and offers enhanced visibility. This latter aspect is especially useful on a day like Saturday when the rain was hammering onto the surface of the lake creating a kind of mist at the perfect height to conceal a swimmer from other water borne craft.

Laetitia pointing out in to Consiton Water, "we should swim to there!.  As if it's possible to point at some arbitrary spot of a completely scary and featureless body of water!
Laetitia pointing out in to Consiton Water, “we should swim to there!”. As if it’s possible to point at some arbitrary spot of a completely scary and featureless body of water!
Pete trying to look like a swimmer!  This illusion is almost pulled off thanks to the trickiness of taking pictures while treading water and the consequent lack of focus...
Pete trying to look like a swimmer! This illusion is almost pulled off thanks to the trickiness of taking pictures while treading water and the consequent lack of focus…
Laetitia treading water somewhere in Coniston Water
Laetitia treading water somewhere in Coniston Water

SMC Meet at RLH and scrambling in the Rain over Pavey Ark

On Saturday evening we were booked on the SMC meet at the Wayfarer hut, RLH, in Langdale. This is a super sociable catered meet run by our friend Dick. Unfortunately the combination of beer, gin and tonic, wine, and scotch meant I was very much worse off on Sunday morning! Although the initially dry morning weather quickly showed signs of deteriorating to showers. Hence a plan was hatched to go for a scramble up the classic Jack’s Rake on Pavey Ark. This plan had the added attraction of not being too demanding of my hammering head! 😳

Pete at the start of Jack's Rake on Pavey Ark
Pete at the start of Jack’s Rake on Pavey Ark
Laetitia at the top of Jack's Rake where we quickly donned our water proof clothing!
Laetitia at the top of Jack’s Rake where we quickly donned our water proof clothing!

Langdale Guidebook Launch

Sunday evening saw us at the Stickle Barn in Langdale for the FRCC‘s first ever formal guidebook launch party – after many many hours of work by Max and his team the latest and greatest Langdale guidebook is done! It’s a brilliant book and should make finding, climbing, and enjoying some of Lakeland’s best rock climbing a great deal easier! (Although it is a bit embarrassing how many of our photographs have found their way in to the guidebook! I can only guess the editorial team didn’t have that many other photo submissions to work with. Not that they are bad pictures – we of course think they’re great pictures – it’s just that there are quite a few!)

In just a few days time you’ll be able to go here to buy your copy of the new Langdale guidebook!

Max Biden's labour, the brand new Langdale guidebook
Max Biden’s labour, the brand new Langdale guidebook

Tremadog Launch Party

We travelled to North Wales at the weekend to celebrate the publication of the new CC Tremadog guidebook.

Loads of people were invited and despite the terrible rain loads turned up too! 😛

Celebrating the new Tremadog guidebook!
The editor, Peter Sterling, says a few words of thanks.
Photo credit, Steve Long
The author, Steve Long

After the food, partying, celebrations, speeches, and booze we headed outside to mark the publication with a bang – and to enjoy a day-late bonfire night – with a few mega fireworks! 😈 Amazingly, as if by providence, the rain had stopped and the fireworks were amazing echoing of the hills at Pen y Pass and illuminating the whole of the Llanberis pass. 😛

Steve watches a display at the start of the Miners Track up Snowdon
Pete Robins launching a Chinese Lantern from the Pen y Pass car park

After the firework fun and games, and having categorically proven once and for all (again) that climbers are just big (but very brave 😉 ) kids, we headed back in to the Caban for more booze and photographs…

The Tremadog guidebook team...
Don Sargeant (Artist), Pete Sterling (Editor & Layout), Andy Boorman (Historical), and Steve Long (Author)
Photo credit: Steve Long col

Sunday
Sunday, with heavy hung over heads, we ventured out in to a brilliant blue-sky sunshine day! Albeit there was a heavy covering of snow on the tops… Richard was so excited that he headed off for a winter conditions traverse of Crib Goch without crampons and axe – I expect that was very exciting! We opted for rock climbing at one of the sunnier cliffs described in the Tremadog guidebook; Moel y Gest.

Moel y Gest
T-shirt sleeves in November!
Laetitia abseiling at Moel y Gest