Weather: A mild showery autumn day, when the sun shone it was very pleasant
Where: Borrowdale, Lake District
|Derwent Water from Kettlewell - Looking Good|
Days out with Glyn (who is In2venture's Technical Advisor for all things mountains) are always a highlight - his love of the mountain environment is infectious; his coaching excellent and company first class! Yesterday morning we met at Kettlewell on Derwent Water, the aim of the day was to progress my personal rope work & leadership on steep ground skills to something a little higher than the standard needed at the Mountain Leader award.
Given the unsettled weather forecast we switched our venue from the planned Pinnacle Ridge to Nitting Haws. The scrambling at Nitting Haws is described in several publications including:
Scrambles in the Lake District Volume 2: Northern Lakes
50 Best Scrambles in the Lake District
Depending on which book and which edition the scramble is graded from 1* through 2 to 2*
After leaving a car at Kettlewell we drove on to Grange, a place I have often driven past but never stopped at before, which is unfortunate and will now change, as it is well worth a visit. We got ready, full waterproofs from the outset and headed off along the road following the sign to Hollows Farm. Through the camping field beyond the Yurts is a stile on to rough fell, A short distance saw us amongst the rocky slabs & outcrops that mark the beginning of the scrambling. Harnesses, & helmets on; rope & metal work sorted - time to start.
This is not really the place to describe the route of the scramble, it is well covered in the two books referred to above, save to say that after a series of rocky slabs and steps the main event is the section shown in the picture above where the route proceeds around the holly trees just to the left of centre of the photograph,
We spent the morning looking at kit; considering movement i.e. where to put your feet; spotting; verbal coaching; confidence roping; moving together on the rope; selection of belays; body belays; direct belays; use of slings; nuts; knots; ascent; descent; traversing & how to keep it all slick!! A good few hours passed in no time and we finally made off the buttress when a longer period of rain set in.
All good - thoroughly enjoyable!!