Monday 20 February 2012

Last of winter? an icy but sunny Glaramara

Today it is wet and windy; so was yesterday the last of winter? I hope not.  Anyway, the sun shone on a beautiful Lake District. The air was crystal clear giving wonderful distant views and the ground underfoot was frozen so we could ignore the paths and walk wherever we liked.

Skye only lay and looked 'cos I told him too!
Anne took some persuading to drive over from Leeds on Saturday morning the conditions were so horrid but she was rewarded with an unmissable day on Sunday.  We drove up Borrowdale under a clear blue sky and parked below Thorneythwaite Fell.  As we approached the ridge the sheep busy feeding took no more notice of Skye than he did of them. As we climbed the ridge the view behind us gave us plenty of excuses to stop and gaze.  A green Borrowdale with snowcapped Skiddaw in the distance.
snow capped Skiddaw in the distance

As we gained height there was a bit of snow around and any water was frozen. At the top of Combe Head the temperature was about -2C but it felt colder in a brisk wind.

view down Borrowdale from Combe Head
Summit of Combe Head with Great Gable in the distance

After a quick coffee in a sheltered hollow we headed across to Glaramara. The frozen water allowed us to take a direct route across the wet area to our south and pick up a snowy ramp up to the eastern ridge of Glaramara. After taking in each of the summits we headed southwards to Allen Crags exploring several tarns on the way which would normally have been too wet to do. The ice, however, was much too thin for walking on the tarns, and even on the streams care and speed were needed at times!

Great End from Allen Crags
After Allen Crags we soon dropped below the snowline and cloud was beginning to build up. A steady descent of Grains Gill avoiding several icy bits brought us down to Seathwaite Farm and along the Allerdale Ramble back to the car. Looking down Borrowdale we could see that the snow on Skiddaw was almost gone.

Friday 10 February 2012

Snow above Easedale

We've had snow on the tops around Keswick but none in the valley. On Wednesday Barry and I drove over to Grasmere to find snow. Even in the valley as we walked up the Easedale Road there was ice and snow under foot.  When we left the road and crossed over the bridge we donned our microspikes which allowed us to walk without worrying about the surface under foot.

Barry and Skye as we climbed to the ridge

We headed uphill to Blindtarn Moss on virgin snow much to my surprise and saw more evidence of deer than people until we reached the ridge at Swinescar Hause.

view down onto a snowy Langdale
What an amazing view over to a Langdale plastered in snow.  After lunch enjoying the view from Swinescar Pike we strolled east along the ridge and back to Grasmere via Wray Gill.

Last of the fine weather - now it is warmer, greyer and damper - ugh!