May Day Meet

May 20th, 2010 by Simon C

This year's May Day weekend was a return to the George Starkey hut in Patterdale, and we had a good turnout.

Saturday's forecast was for early sun with rain later. Carmen and I opted for some obscure climbing near the hut. We started with Coffee Slab (details on, which turned out to be a large boulder with half a dozen piss-poor 'routes' – despite being only 5 minutes from the path it's not worth the trouble. We then moved up the hill to Dubhow Crag, another new addition with details on the FRCC site. This one was a bit better, though over-starred. We started in the wrong place and ended up doing a new route by mistake (Caterpillar Ridge S 4b) – nothing great, but no worse than the rest of the routes we did when we found the right buttress! Rain was by now threatening so we wandered back to the hut but managed to stay dry – whcih is more than can be said for anyone else!

Peter and John had set off at first light for Eagle Crag in Grisedale. They climbed the fine Kestrel Wall (S **) and were half way up Doctor's Grooves (HS *) when the heavens opened, so they abbed off and swam back to the hut.

Peri led another group of climbers to Castle Rock of Triermain, where they had time for Via Media (S **) before the rain arrived.

There were also various walking/scrambling parties, but I'm afraid I've forgotten what they did (I'm writing this 6 months after the trip) – I do know that it involved getting very wet though!

The next day was much better, dry with some sunshine. Carmen and I set out early for a long run, training for the Fellsman. Round the east side of Ullswater to Martindale, then up the curiously-named Pikeawassa and along the ridge to Wether Hill. Then south over Rampsgill Head, High Street, Thornthwaite Beacon, Stony Cove Pike, and down to the Kirkstone Inn. Slog up Red Screes, then round the ridge to Fairfield, back over St Sunday Crag to Patterdale and the hut. Phew!

Peri's group of climbers went to Shepherds Crag, and various walks were done, perhaps someone will remind me of the details!

Finally, on the Monday, John, Peter, Carmen and I all headed for Longsleddale, where the Buckbarrow bird ban had been lifted early. The Evanses climbed the crag classic Sadgill Wall (S **). We'd done the route before, so went for Dandle Chimney (VDiff *) – some good climbing, but extremely vegetated. This was followed by Slab and Rib – allegedly VDiff but due to guidebook confusion I think we finished up a VS instead! Bright and sunny with a bitterly cold north wind. Peri and co chose Corvus on Raven Crag, and claim to have enjoyed themselves despite the wind!

More photos here.

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