Sunday, 15 April 2018

Ski-touring Cumbria-style

This write-up of local tours in early March comes from club member Nick Gray...
A trio of mini desserts!

After Tuesday night’s snowfall the strong easterly winds, and difficulty of travel  precluded the full main course trips to the high tops but allowed a tasty assiette of mini desserts to be enjoyed close to home. Here are the recipes for shorter tours near Kendal – some well tried others maybe not:
Benson Knott: Skis on at the barn on the Tebay road and fishscales took me all way to summit. Great  run down fell to boundary gate then good snow down easterly field all way back to car – plenty of time in the bright sunshine for a second round – it was that good!
Cunswick Scar: With winds whipping all the snow away , grey cloud and bitter temperature a run from Scout Scar to Cunswick and back sufficed and certainly blew the cobwebs away. Finding silky snow in the lea of the wind gave Lucy and I surprisingly good glide.
Borrowdale and Whinfell ridge: Researching a venue for the weekend ,as meet leader, I came up with the A6 Borrowdale, thinking snow would be blown into the valley with some shelter from the plantations. A return back along Whinfell would have any easterly wind at our backs. With no takers I waited for the winds to subside and sun to appear before setting off and enjoyed a great run down a perfect, quadbike groomed track to Low Borrowdale Farm. Then up through sparse woodland remnants to the repeater station and along the ridge in glorious evening sun. The final knobbles and small plantation gave more challenging “bushwhacking” but a great outing with 3 close-up wildlife sightings. A surprised fox crossing the ridge in front of me, a curious tawny owl disturbed from a roost by snowy rocks and a ruin on the ridge came back for a closer look, and a snipe in the valley exploded from under my skis.
Tasty treats indeed!