18th - 20th November:

Glaramara - Lake District

Present: G Barnes, B Benton, R Brown, A Chatburn, M Clowes, H Cotton, J Conlon, P Crowson, T Crowther, J Eastwood, S Goodier, C Goulden, B Grayson, B Griffiths, R Harris, J Hood, G Hughes, M Johnson, E Shawcross, R Shawcross, G Peppit, R Peppit, M Peppit, M Pierce, E Sampson, G Sampson, A Tickle, M Travis, guest David Mullineaux, prospective member Mike White.

B Earnshaw & Kit Brown resign. R Harris was elected President without becoming Vice President, and the outgoing President Lionel Stout was unable to attend due to an operation. M Clowes started a second year as Vice President! The Hon Sec C Willan resigned due to age, infirmity and longevity in the post, and R Shawcross ably replaced him. Skellie, Greenaway, Stout, Lett, Laura Travis, C Willan, kindly contributed money for free drinks.

By Crowson: Ok, up a snowy Great End via Cust's Gully, escaped from waterfall under chock stone to exit on head wall. (Crowson Grayson). 

By Bob Grayson: On Saturday Phil and Bob tried to climb up a snow gully on Great Gable.  The snow was like tiny polystyrene balls - we didn’t leave foot prints - it was so powdery that it was like wallowing in fluff.  We failed to make it up the gulley - despite being well equipped with Colonel Haythornthwaite’s ceremonial ice pick - a chock stone blocked our way but we did have a fantastic snow slide on our way back down.  Having walked around the side to the top the snow blew quite hard and Crowson took the opportunity to take off his socks and boots and to announce that a) he was having his heart stopped on the Monday and b) he had severe chest pains.  Fortunately we made it down the valley to a lovely pub in Stonethwaite (the Langstrath Country Inn) which I would recommend.  Sadly too small for the club to hold the AGM there - but well worth a pint or two on the way down.

From Andy Tickle: I presume you are not looking for a report from my (armchair mountaineer) visits to the Kendal Mountain Festival?! More seriously, can I offer my apologies to fellow members for my lack of participation in the weekend's activities? I was suffering from poor health and it didn't make me the best of companions. I am hoping normal service will be restored soon! However it was great to see you all and I very much enjoyed my first stay at Glaramara. The quality of the cooking was unbelievable!

From Griff: Saturday: Having had our characters (mal?) formed years ago, Rod & I eschewed the call of the cold and retired to the warmth of Keswick climbing wall where we found gravity to be particularly strong. It must have been some sort of local abnormality, it certainly wasn’t mentioned on Radio 4. Sunday: Feeling less than fresh, we felt obliged to check out the chocolate factory in Orton, where we enjoyed a veritable calorie depth charge in the form of their excellent Hummingbird Cake. Thus refreshed and having collected my wife’s “beany” hat left behind on the reconnaissance expedition two week earlier, we headed off into the sun to confront the traffic on the M60.

From Ed Shawcross: Rick and I set off with the main walking party towards Seathwaite, We parted company from Crowson and Grayson (Phil had declared his desire to do a 'Classic Victorian Snow Gully' on Great End - not what I fancied in unconsolidated snow)!  Pierce, Shawcross * 2, Peppit *2 and Sampson *2 set up off Sour Milk Gill and were soon at the snow line.  Here progress slowed not due to conditions underfoot but because Pierce and Sampson G were a better target for snow balls that anyone could have wished for.  We made our way in great conditions with spectacular views towards Geen Gable.  On a subsidury top Rick and I parted company from the main group to climb Great Gable.  The conditions were wintery and we soon encountered very cold winds and driven snow.  Summiting we descended to Sty Head tarn, stopping on some boulders over looking it for a bite to eat. Descent to Glaramara was uneventful and we were back relatively early to allow Rick to get his paper work in order for the AGM.  13 kms and 1000m of ascent made for a pleasing day out. On Sunday we drove to Bassenthwaite and parked at the Lakes distillery.  From here we took an hours cross country run in good fun conditions, breaking the layer of ice on a couple of big puddles and getting very wet and muddy.  We had a coffee at the distillery cafe before heading to Carlisle to visit our older brother and heading home.

By Geoff: The crocks, with Tony Crowther, Bryan Benton and guest David (who probably wasn’t a crock), had a pleasant but wet underfoot amble to Seathwaite, Stonewaite, Roswaite and back, meeting up with the younger Peppit party above the hotel. About 6 miles of level walking. Mike Johnson started slowly whilst nursing a twisted knee, but turned back at the first boot deep puddle, but really a mini lake.

 By Axel: Here is my account of the Friday's activities. Mike Johnson, Tony Crowther, Richard Harris, Graham Barnes, Axel and guest David Mullineaux met at Ambleside Pier. The weather was rainy and the happy group made for the Pier Cafe for refreshments, which were served by an amiable proprietor. After discussion and despite the discouraging weather, it was decided to tackle the round shown on the accompanying map in an anticlockwise direction. We set off up hill into the woods and soon stopped for lunch on Jenkin Crag. We continued to High Skelghyll and snowscape and Mike and Tony broke away towards the Water Sports Centre. We others continued over the hill into Townend and Troutbeck. Then came the ascent of Wansfell Pike which was accompanied by improving weather.  We got back to the cars in the early dark of the evening and met up again with Mike and Tony who had walked back along the road.

Saturday started a fine day. Richard Harris, Graham Barnes and myself set off for Honister. We had considered attempting Dale Head as we had done it some 6 years before but we persuaded ourselves the weather was not inviting and so decided to settle for Haystacks instead. There was quite a lot of snow about, but some vehicles appeared to be getting over the pass. We got to the slate mine and then, after a bit of indecision regarding the route, we went up onto higher ground where there was about 5" of snow. We headed across the moor towards Haystacks. There were very few people about. Initially, we had it to ourselves. Eventually, we decided on lunch. Richard's knee was playing up, and as we deemed it essential to get him back in good time for the AGM and Dinner, we regretfully abandoned our attack on Haystacks. On the return we suddenly noticed the view had opened up over Buttermere to Mellbreak which was bathed in sunshine. We arrived back in Seatoller somewhat too early and so decided to walk up the road to Seathwaite. It was flooded in places and we met some DPC coming the other way. It then began to rain quite hard and Richard, bearing in mind that he must be back for important duties, returned along the road. Graham and I carried on to Seathwaite and took the path on the other side of the valley, crossing the main road and then the river, to return, in the gathering darkness, via the National Trust carpark in Seatoller.

Here is my account for the Sunday's activity:- Tony Crowther took Graham Barnes and myself to Grasmere and we were joined there by The President with guest David Mullineaux and Mike Johnson. We set off together on the path to Easedale Tarn. It was a sunny morning and very pleasant. Mike and Tony dropped back and walked together. The remainder carried on up the track to the Tarn where it presented a snowy scene. On the way back we ate our lunch on a little bridge.  Motored home in the afternoon.