Festive reflections

I’m conscious that I can moan about the weather just a bit too much… grey days, no views, drizzle etc etc

High above Greenfield Reservoir on Christmas Eve, 2008So, to redress the balance, my festive break has been blessed by superb weather and some memorable days on two feet and two wheels.

Christmas Eve was simply stunning. In clear blue skies and spring-like temperatures, I climbed high on to the moors around Dove Stone Reservoir. At last I had the day to merit my edges walk, which I abandoned in November.

This is a fine excursion that I can heartily recommend. The scramble up Birchen Clough poses sufficient scrambling challenges to quicken the pulse while the rocky eastern rim of the valley has much to offer. What a difference a day made compared to my Kinder trip.

With the commitments of Christmas out of the way, it was up to Langdale for the New Year. The Eve was spent the bar of the Old Dungeon Ghyl as a heavy frost gripped the valley. If ever there was a place to people-watch, then the ODG is it.

Among the climbers, revelers and drifters was the ‘toker’ community who regularly disappeared outside to colour the crystalline air with ‘Purple Haze’ or White Widow’ (or whatever the latest sativa craze is to find its way from the ‘green houses’ of Amsterdam to the Cumbrian valleys).

Blea Tarn, frozen, New Years Day, 2008After a surprisingly comfortable night in the tent, the other half and I spent the afternoon skidding on icy paths over to Little Langdale and beyond, enjoying the peace of frozen landscape.

A superb start to the year.

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