The members of the Club have been active in many ways during this year but Club activities have been affected by “you know what” and we have only had one meet so far –
Saturday – 25th July 2020
I was down for organising the EVMC walk on July 25th, so suggested a visit to Cautley Spout, on to the high point of the Calf, and return by Bowderdale Beck – away from the crowds. I was very pleased to find that Phil, Rosie, Steve and Lucie all wanted to join, and thanks to Penny’s parking tip off, we agreed to convene at the earlier time of 9am by the Cross Keys – the healthy pub with no beer. On arrival Penny’s advice paid off as there was not another car in sight, but the weather was blowing a hooley so I was regretting only taking light clothing. Steve and Lucie arrived shortly, then Phil and Rosie to complete our platoon. We were the only people about and it was not until we were high up on Cautley Spout that we spotted others following in the valley. The rain veered between drizzle and torrential, but we were kept warm by the steep slope and were all glad to be out and able to catch up with each other. The spout was is full force, and at the top we found a rather posh looking sheepfold with a pointy tower in one corner (Andy Goldsworthy job?). Passing a bloke with a big rucksack on his way down, we found ourselves the first at the Trigpoint and settled in for lunch where Steve flaunted his luxury storm shelter.
As we chomped in the murk we took note of the forwards direction, but the rain stopped, the cloud lifted and provided us with fantastic views to the West. Fully munched, we set off along the top and down the track to Bowderdale Beck, stopping to remove gear and later passing many parties on their way up. About five hours after setting off we were back at the layby, now packed, and decided to round off the day by not having coffee in the pub that didn’t have beer…!
Friday 13th March 2020 – Eden Valley MC film night
George Hotel, Penrith – 7.30pm
We have selected three films for the evening, they are all directed by Jen Randall who produces films through her company Lightshed Pictures. This is the first ever evening, exclusively showing Jen Randall pictures – a world first. The three films are –
- ‘Push It’ – climbing in Yosemite,
- ‘Mind Control’ – Hazel Findlay coming to terms with shoulder surgery and returning to climbing in Spain and
- ‘Home’ the 4 year human-powered adventure of Sarah Outen as she travels around the world by bike, boat and kayak.
22nd February 2020 – Exploring the other Borrowdale
7 demotivated walkers and 1 eager dog met up on a blustery Saturday to make themselves go out! Starting from Huck’s bridge, we were pushed by the easterly up a refreshingly heathery Ashstead Fell and down the crags into Combs Hollow where we found some merciful shelter in the forest and signs of Goshawk in the many large pellets scattered about. On Castle Fell we were sent sideways and in circles by the gusts before reaching the shelter and making our way over to the pylons.
Here we picked up a track through ancient Alders, bedecked with lichen, finding a perfect picnic spot in a large Pine. Following the Borrow Beck, we passed Low Borrowdale Farm then into High Borrowdale – owned by Friends of the Lake District where extensive upland planting has been undertaken. Belinda was able to show off the tree cages that her apprentices had built before we turned uphill to the road in a fierce hail storm that made us glad to see the cars. The cobwebs were well and truly blown away and back in time for the rugby. Shame about the result….
2nd February 2020 – February Social – Bird Race
On an auspiciously palindromic date, nine gathered at the Monument, in Penrith for the inaugural EVMC bird race.
Names were drawn from a hat and 2 teams departed on foot in opposite directions. Phil’s team of Ron, Dorothy, Jane and Rona headed for Thacka Beck and Belinda’s team of Rosie, Chris, Robin and Rob aimed for Eamont Bridge. At Thacka, the highlight was Snipe and later Tree Sparrow at a pre-arranged garden. Good spots! All the species normally flocking on Phil’s bird feeders were conspicuous by their absence though the team had a nice sighting of a Greenfinch.
The Eamont was raging so no birds there, that Belinda had been counting on, but the haphazard route the team took unearthed some unexpected bounty like Fieldfare, Nuthatch and a flock of Bullfinch.
Back at the George, Dorothy’s Keith joined us to choose the star species for a bonus point. He chose Treecreeper as a favourite bird of his so Belinda’s team won with 28 species + 1 to Phil’s team with 23. The main point was that everyone had a fun morning and discovered that Penrith is not bad for birds. 33 species spotted in total. Thanks everyone for coming!
The following is a list of bird seen – Greater Black-backed Gull, Herring Gull, Carrion Crow, Starling, Blackbird, Chaffinch, Jackdaw, Collared Dove, Woodpigeon, Robin, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Dunnock, Rock Dove, House Sparrow, Black-headed Gull, Magpie, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Treecreeper, Rook, Bullfinch, Nuthatch, Song Thrust, Coal Tit, Fieldfare, Redwing, Kestral, Long Tailed Tit, Mallard, Moorhen, Snipe, Teal
25th JANUARY 2020 – NINE STANDARDS RIGG
…. or “How 5 get lost in the mist”
A car-full left Penrith in the rain and arrived high on the Nateby – Keld road in the mist. For such a rubbish day – a good turnout!
Undeterred, we set off on the path to the Nine Standards. Apart from it wasn’t. 3 maps and 3 compasses bowed the superior knowledge of the GPS which said we were here not there. Through a combination of experience, technology and bloody mindedness, we bog trotted to the top. Which we found 3 times – the trig point, the viewing point and the nine standards, which are magnificent, unlike the view.
We saw nothing anywhere but, following the ridge off, experienced the delight of the cloud lifting and the view appearing and as if by magic we knew where we were. Ending up on the Keld road, we found we were fine at navigation after all and walked our way back into Cumbria.
At Kirkby Stephen we celebrated our reunion with the car at a tea shop with huge slabs of cake and vowed to return when the flagstones are laid and the sun is shining.
Thanks to Ron, Andy, Gillian and Aki for a good day and keeping good humour.