It's Inevitable

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August 25th 2012
Published: August 25th 2012
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The weatherman said today, there’s a slight chance of rain, I had to laugh to myself ...

It was raining when I got up, it was raining when I wandered into town for breakfast, it was raining when I was buying my lunch, it was raining all day!

The day dawned ...

... rain fell ...

... waterproofs were donned and two more Wainwrights were earmarked for climbing. Due to the inclement weather, two of the lowest were to be attempted - not difficult but, with the cloud base being so low, two offering the best opportunity.

And so, in the driving rain, I drove to Thackthwaite and parked up by the side of the road and made my way past a notice imploring the red squirrels to drive carefully, through a farm yard and onto an old track way. Slowly climbing, the track became overgrown and I had to divert through a field of Highland Cattle, looking bedraggled in the rain.

With the rain hammering on my waterproofs, I eventually climbed through the fields onto the old Drove Road which would take me to the summit. Water ran along the path, soaking the ground beneath my feet, deep mud occasionally accompanying me upwards. Mist rolled in and, as quickly, cleared. The rain remained constant.

Finally, after a number of fences, I took the final steep ascent onto the summit of Low Fell. The cairn welcomed me, solid in the cooling wet breeze.

Wainwright describes the view from the summit as the view is of classical beauty, an inspired and inspiring vision of loveliness that has escaped the publicity of picture postcards and poets' sonnets, a scene of lakes and mountains arranged to perfection. Unfortunately, all I had was cloud - albeit in abundance.

Lunch was taken in the lee of the summit, sitting on a ruined sheepfold, the stones providing comfortable seating although the rain did much to dilute the warm coffee poured from my flask.

After, the climb back up to the summit was followed by the vertiginous decent towards Watching Crag.

Arriving at the first fence, I noticed that there was an opportunity to traverse towards Fellbarrow, rather than return to the proper footpath and have a further climb.

So, in the cloud, I decided on a traverse, ensuring that the boundary fence was continuously to my left which would mean that I would intercept the fence line just prior to Fellbarrow's summit.

Sure enough, the fence appeared through the mist just a few yards short of my expectation with the summit of Fellbarrow shortly after.

The obligatory photo of the summit cairn was a precursor to my decent, the rain getting heavier as I returned to the car. Ironically, I got more wet having put my waterproofs in the car than I did on the walk. In this rain, I suppose, It's Inevitable.

2 Wainwrights, 5 miles and an ascent of 1414'.

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