Yorkshire 3 Peaks

Went for a wee wander on Saturday…

…guiding a group ’round the Yorkshire Three Peaks! Not much guiding required, as we were treated to clear and cold weather so visibility was excellent.

Early morning on the south ridge of Pen-y-ghent

They were a good bunch, raising money for various good causes, and made steady progress to get ’round in a little under ten and a half hours.

Heading up Whernside, with Ingleborough ahead.

A long day, but Penrith MRT got £4,500 out of it, so many thanks to the kind folk of HSBC (North-East) for an enjoyable day (and the cash!).

Sunday was an East Cumbria Search Panel exercise, the scenario for which was a Mountain Marathon event in the Howgills, in combination with an E-coli outbreak – nice. Fortunately from my rather tired point of view, this required lots of sitting in a Land Rover, enjoying the view, drinking coffee and, erm, ‘co-ordinating’! The joys of delegation…

Summer makes a brief late show

After a late night out, Anna and I made a slow start, but finally headed to Grange to meet Martin. We headed up to Black Crag, but just as we got to the gate leaving the track, the rain started. It had been warm in the sun, so we pressed on and the shower soon passed.
The crag was fairly busy, so we plumped for Troutdale Pinnacle Direct, which was free. There was still a bit of knitting higher up as we met a pair on Troutdale Pinnacle.

Ian on the 5b crack start
Ian on the 5b crack start
Martin on pitch 1
Martin on pitch 1
Ian on pitch 3
Ian on pitch 3
Anna on the final pitch
Anna on the final pitch

Halfway up we were buzzed by the RAF, but they weren’t there for us; they headed just up the valley to meet the MRT who were attending a accident. We watched as they winched the victim from the valley floor and sped away towards Keswick.

The RAF move into position down the valley
The RAF move into position down the valley
The stretcher is pulled aboard
The stretcher is pulled aboard

The climbing and rock was great after the sandstone of a couple of weeks ago. Even when the sun disappeared and we got quite chilly, it didn’t detract from the day. Mind you it did cause us to head straight to the cafe.

The boys....... ready for cake!!
The boys....... ready for cake!!

The cafe was busier than the crag!! Keith and Fiona arrived , and soon after, Zac (just back from Cho Oyu) and Sarah turned up. We tucked into tea and cake, but forgot to take a photo, so when I got home I had more cake, just so I could take a piccy.

Anna's homemade courgette fruit square with cream cheese icing.. YUM!
Anna's homemade courgette fruit square with cream cheese icing.. YUM!

Expedition Medicine

I was lucky enough to be asked again to help out with the Expedition Medicine course based in the Lake District.

Tuesday was really wet, but I spent a good afternoon teaching basic rope skills, navigation, and basic casualty carrying techniques to a group of doctors. As always, they are really easy to deal with, only need to told things once, and generally remember it. A long way from Sunbury and trying to teach a figure of 8 to the kids from Feltham!!

Today was the scenario day, with a number of teams looking for casualties above Falcon crag in Borrowdale. All the teams moved their casualty to the evacuation point and the Great North Air ambulance arrived to give us a rundown of the aircraft, the equipment on board and the stretchers etc. used in moving casualties.

Exped Med 09 09 013

Exped Med 09 09 009

This was a really informative day, not just for the doctors and me but also for the walkers who happened to be passing by!

Exped Med 09 09 019

Windermere Airshow 2009

It was the first day of the Windermere Airshow, and I’d volunteered to stand and be sociable on the SARDA Lakes stand in the event arena. It was a good opportunity for Mil to meet lots of children and chat about training.

SARDA Lakes stand at the Windermere Airshow
SARDA Lakes stand at the Windermere Airshow

This was interspersed with the odd aeroplane but unfortunately Roge (& Beinn) and Ian (& Vinny) had to leave as there was a call out with Langdale & Ambleside Mountain Rescue Team

I also came across a big bird…but not sure about the ethics of this

Golden Eagle
Golden Eagle

A lovely lady called Pauline came and said hello with her pet Guinea Pig (sorry I forgot to take a photograph). We didn’t have any cakes so I couldn’t take a photo for all you cakephiles.

The day finished off with the flypast of the amazing Vulcan bomber.

The AVRO Vulcan G-VLCN (XH558)
The AVRO Vulcan G-VLCN (XH558)

It took nearly an hour to get out of the car park 🙁

Sunday practice

As the East Cumbria Search Panel excercise was called off as the Lake District was likely to be busy and needing Mountain Rescue Teams quickly was a priority.

However, Kirkby Stephen Mountain Rescue Team decided to have a day practising our skills.

We had two ‘incidents’…one near High Cup Nick and one on Murton Crags.

The long walk up - track blocked by big drifts
The long walk up - track blocked by big drifts
The 'casualty' site near High Cup Nick
The 'casualty' site near High Cup Nick

It was a successful day and thoroughly enjoyed by all. I think the casualties also enjoyed their trip down the snow slopes strapped into a stretcher on skids!

Posing for a picture
Posing for a picture

Secret Mission

Next weekend is a big search excercise (East Cumbria Search Panel) involving Mountain Rescue Teams from Penrith, Kirkby Stephen, Teesdale, Swaledale and SARDA Lakes (search dogs).

I was on a mission to check a suitable location for hiding some ‘bodies’.

The following picture doesn’t give too much away (I hope).

Secret location
Secret location