Midsummer Meet 23 – 25 June at The Smithy

Midsummer Meet 23rd – 25th June 2017 at The Smithy

Who was there? David Bateman, Andy Causer, Berenice Causer, Peter Haigh, Alan Moss, Lynn Moss, Luke Travis (Guest).

What did they do?

Saturday began rather gloomily causing a tardy exit from the hut only after things had brightened up somewhat.

Andy and David drove over to the fastest drying crag that came to mind, namely Raven Langdale. It was threatening rain again as they began Holly Tree Traverse and sure enough a winter-quality blast caught them at the eponymous tree. At the top of the climb they were hailed by Kenton Cool who was collecting a piece of gear. By the time second lunch had been disposed of it was now glorious sunshine and remained that way for the rest of the day – ideal timing and conditions for an ascent of Evening Wall with its splendid finish on the arête to the right.

What of the rest of the Grits? After watching the England vs All-Blacks – a great game with a final score TBF – Luke joined them on a beautiful walk over Rannerdale Knotts beside Crummock Water.

Thus went the day; come the evening, it being Midsummer and glorious weather, sunlight was streaming into the clubhouse through the North-facing windows and the sunset was something to behold.

On Sunday Luke, who is preparing for a diving expedition under the ice in Russia later in the year, attended a diving course in Keswick and then made an early departure. Lynn, Alan and Berenice had plans for a walk in Patterdale, but a road closure near Dockray occasioned a rethink; instead they walked to Gow Barrow via the terrace path and the walk afforded fabulous views. That left time for a spot of ‘birding’. They ascended Dodd Fell to the hide from which the resident pair of ospreys could be observed with three chicks at a stage when the two young males and one female were about to fledge. The chicks had already been ringed.

Andy and David flogged up White Ghyll and arrived at the well-known tree at the foot of Slip Knot etc by lunch time. The goal was Route 1, a fine route taking them from a calm start to a breezy finish. To avoid an unpleasant descent of the ghyll they decided to return from the top of the crag down the fell on a roughly parallel course. It proved different but no easier as it meant scrambling down a few rocky bands and wading through acres of lush bracken in the direction of Upper Scout crag. Still, it was doubly worth it as Andy picked up a Rock 13, and any crag booty in good condition doesn’t come amiss.

In addition to her walking activities back at the Smithy Lynn had been running a one-woman maintenance meet off and on all weekend. In fact she was still there paint brush in hand nobly assisted by Peter when the rest had cleared out on Monday morning.

David Bateman

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