The Road goes ever on and on; Down from the door where it began;
Now far ahead the Road has gone; And I must follow, if I can;
Pursuing it with eager feet; Until it joins some larger way;
Where many paths and errands met; And whither then? I cannot say.

[JRR Tolkien, Lord of the Rings]

Thursday 18 September 2008

Day 2 - SE of Crag Fell to Stonethwaite

18 June
Distance: rough guess of somewhere around 12.5 miles
Number of killer anythings: 0

At just before midnight I nipped out side of the tent and found that even by night we had a fantastic view. Admittedly the large moon and clear sky helped, as did these new continuous-wear contact lenses that I'm trying.

This morning dawned, but slightly before that happened I popped my head up to have a look what the weather was doing, as the weather was an important factor in our high route/low route decision. Cloudy and grey was the answer, but with promise that it would clear later (something of a false promise as it turned out).

After a tiny bit of umming and arring, we made the only sensible choice on a whole host of bases. We went low.

It started quite interestingly too, as there wasn't a path going in our direction, so we soon found ourselves traipsing through five feet high bracken, with heather that nicely concealed the big rocks and big dips.

Battling our way over to a wall, we had a brief aquafaff to fill our reservoirs from a lovely stream and then the going got a bit easier when we found a path which led us down to the lake-shore.

We had received yesterday news that Mike (the same Mike who has a talent for joining us for the hardest days of our walking) had popped up to the Lakes for the week and was going to meet us today. It was easier said than done to arrange a rendez-vous as the marvels of mobile phone technology are only helpful if both parties have reception at the same time.

After a bit of faffing with phones we managed to squeeze text messages through and learned that Mike was about an hour behind us and said that we would wait at Black Sail Hut for him.

He put on a bit of a sprint and we indulged in a large pot of tea and soon enough he popped through the door.

Things were uneventful, but truly spectacular over by Brandreth and Grey Knotts but it was another test of the knees on the descent and Mick's one knee is protesting. As a result of that we've abandonned our long held plan of going via Helvellyn tomorrow (and being thankful that we didn't take the high level route today). For the moment we will stick to the aim of reaching the East coast and stay low. The hills will still be there another time (and hey, we have a record to maintain of missing all significant hill tops on our long walks this year!).

By the time we were heading down from Honister I had realised that our food situation meant that I needed to ge to the shop in Rosthwaite before it closed, so we put a bit of a spurt on after a positive amble over the hills.

Before we knew it the chaps were heading over to the campsite in Longthwaite and I was heading towards the shop in Rosthwaite, where the stock was so low that it was a challenge to put together enough ingredients for breakfast and lunch tomorrow.

I eventually located the campsite and found the chaps already pitched - it wasn't hard to spot them, given that there were only two tents in the field.

After sampling the showers (much better than they looked) we made haste towards the Langstrath where we have had a most excellent meal and a pint or so of fine ale. That people rave about this inn is justified, in our experience.

Mike will be joining us again tomorrow, at least for part of the way before he sets out to work out how to make his way back to his car in Ennerale Bridge.

We've also met another C2Cer this evening. He explained to us that he's carrying all his gear and that as a result has a 75 litre pack weighing 37lbs. On further discussion, it turns out that he is staying in B&B's for the whole route. The mind boggled until we found that amongst other things he has with him two pairs of boots (one crampon compatible) plus a pair of shoes plus a full change of clothes. AndI thought that my pack was heavy!

1 comment:

  1. "... and Mick's one knee is protesting". I didn't know you were married to a one-legged husband!