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Travel to Cumbria and Beyond

Westerly Wainwright

Westerly Wainwright

I was almost pleased to see the rain in Greenwich today, simply because it has been such a grim weekend here, but having spend many years of my past involved with horses I appreciate how miserable it can be.  those riders who had to ride in the torrential down pours deserve an extra few points.

Back to the walking.  Yesterday’s walk was pretty grim, and one I shall have to do again when there is less cloud on the top.  Black Combe is the most south westerly of the Wainwright hills and in an area I have not walked so often.  Though as I child I spent many balmy summers days on the beach at Silecroft. 

WonderfulSkyThere is a bridleway which goes up and over the top of Black Combe,and several other walks take advantage of ‘open access’ to make a slightly shorter day than  North South route.  We followed Walk 10 from this Cicerone book, which took off the most northerly stretch.  Only afterwards reading  that it was not a good idea to follow it on a misty day.  Suffice to say we survived, and the erratic clouds and fickle weather produced some interesting, if not always clear images.

Mist1

The green of our ‘green and pleasant’ land has greater emphasis when newly washed and spotlighted through clouds, rather than a full summer sun.  Though in balance I would rather walk in the full sun.

Mist2

The route begins on a clear bridleway from Whitbeck, passing the delightfully named crags of Tarn Dimples. There is more of a challenge when it takes a right turn up William Gill.  At times there is no clear pathway and walking over blueberry bushes and heather is certain good for the thighs, and balance, ref my outdoor gym.    Typically it was at this point that the mist descended and began to play havoc with the view. Thankful of the wind for a change, as the veil was removed as quickly as it was applied. 

TopBlackCombe

At the top of the ridge then there was the advantage of having a clear track, but the gain in height meant a static grey hat to the hill and on a featureless summit, the only way to find the downward track was to use a compass.  But the reward when slipping under the brim was the green undulating sides of the Wincham Valley in a soft summer spotlight.

WinchamValley

Return to the start is by a footpath which borders the A59, so not such a pleasant end to the walk, but at least it is off the roadway.  And naturally, the sun had returned and the sky was blue.

Walk starts SD 118 839

More of my pictures here.  Cicerone book here, and other books here. Map OL6, buy here.

 

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