AGM WALK - 28.10.12


It was a glorious sunny day with frost firming the ground, ice encrusted puddles and a thin wind that soon abated making for memorable walking conditions. Unfortunately the AGM walk was the following day when continuous rain, high winds and lowering skies made the planned walk over Helvellyn and the Edges a non starter. Even so eight set out on a lower level route and ‘enjoyed’ an exploration of the lesser hills at the northern end of Thirlmere. Unusually ladies outnumbered the men by five to three providing yet more evidence demonstrating the fallacy of the weaker sex argument!


After an initial soggy half hour walking above the A591 we happened across the new Lodge in the Vale at the entrance to St John’s in the Vale. It seemed churlish not to celebrate the end of British Summer Time so a further happy half hour was spent over an early coffee break. After several attempts Leader Tony was eventually able to extricate the party from the cosy interior and the walk proper was started.


Great How was the first objective, a neatly situated wooded hillock nestling above Thirlmere’s dam. Although not a Wainwright this standalone belvedere is a fine vantage point for both the giants of Skiddaw and Blencathra (not seen) and Thirlmere itself (well seen). It also features in the newly invented hill list of Humps – don’t ask! Moving on we crossed Thirlmere’s dam constructed in the 1890’s to provide water forManchester.


The next objective was Raven Crag, sadly currently out of bounds due to wind blown trees, but the nearby Castle Crag fort and subsidiary summit of The Benn were a suitable consolation. Descending through the trees to Shoulthwaite we admired the wild crags and impressive waterfalls to the east of Bleaberry Fell while looking for a sheltered lunch spot. A redundant barn full of obsolete farm machinery fitted the bill well and was made even better by a friendly caravanner who provided tea-for-free!


Crossing the A591 again we progressed to the Diocesan Youth Centre before climbing onto the isolated wedge of High Rigg. It only remained to traverse the easy ridge southwards and rejoin our outward route. Thoughts of the impending AGM hustled us along the busy road to our journey’s end at The King’s Head Hotel where dry clothes and refreshments awaited us.