Our last full day in the Lake District before having to head home, which was a bit of a shame, but the kids only get one week off, so we were scuppered from that perspective. We had to get back home and get some washing through the washing machine. Anyway, that’s all tomorrow.
Back at today, we set off fairly early because Kas wanted to go for a run to recce a bit of the course she is supposed to be running on some madder-than-a-sack-of-monkeys ultra marathon she’s doing in September. The part of the course in question was away on the west side of Skiddaw, so we drove her off there and then went for a bit of a drive looking for a few caches. Well, Izzy and me were looking. Ami was sat in the back of the car playing on her iPad, as she tends to these days. We found a couple of caches in pretty good locations. Here’s the view from one of them.
When it was about time, we drove round to our assigned pickup point and found a convenient parking spot but therein began the problems. We had absolutely no phone signal where we were parked and assumed Kas didn’t either, so we couldn’t see where she was on Glympse and nor could we phone her. Anyway, we sat waiting for 15-20 minutes with me getting increasingly disturbed about Kas being late. There was some nervous pacing about going on. But eventually Kas rolled up, having discovered that fell running is a little slower than running on roads, due to the uneven terrain, and the having-to-navigate. She’d ducked a chunk of her planned route on the basis that she was taking far longer than planned, so she cut short and run up to meet us along the road, which was not a direction I was expecting her to come from.
We drove over to the The Old Sawmill Tearoom for a quick change and to grab a handful of cold drinks to take with us, and then we set off for our main event of the day – the walk up Cat Bells. This is more of a family-friendly mountain than some of the others nearby, being only modest in height and having a decent quality path most of the way up. It certainly is a well-trodden path.
When we reached the top it was well into lunchtime, so we sat for a break and some well earned nosh. It was another fan-dabby-tastic day for the weather and the view from the top is pretty darn good.
We were doing (well, I was doing) a few caches on the walk around – just those we passed within 100m of – which added up to eight or so on the walk. Most were easy. The one down the side of the hill in the ruined shepherd’s hut surrounded by bracken was not so easy. Ami came with me to that one. From the summit we lurched over the back a little bit and then descended a path down to the shore of Derwent Water. We’d been walking for a while so the first thing we did at the lakeshore was to whip our shoes and socks off and cool our feet down in the lake water. The water was refreshing.
By the time we got back to where we’d parked time was moving on a bit and the ice cream stand was shut, which we obviously count as a total failure. We therefore drove into the middle of Keswick, safe in the knowledge we’d find something there. What we found was the really rather nice Bar Metro. It was a very small but perfectly formed mock American diner, serving a selection of American favourites, plus beer and massive milkshakes. Perfect pick-me-up food after a day of walking up and down mountains.
As we had an appointment with the motorway system the following day, and planned to do some more walking, we got home quite early, packed our bags, and went to bed. The end of another day filled with fresh air, sunshine, and mountains.