Something that a person cannot conquer, achieve etc.
Found in in the Lake District National Park Scafell Pike is the highest mountain in England, with the summit standing at a height of 978 metres (3,209 ft) above sea level. It has a stony summit which can be reached via a number of routes, the most commonly used routes begin at Wasdale from the West and Seathwaite from the North East as these are the the common starting points used during the National 3 Peaks Challenge.
It is at this point that I should confess Scafell Pike has never been my favourite mountain and in fact I was beginning to believe that the mountain had a grudge with me, or I had upset the spirits of the hills in some way! During 5 previous outings on which I have crossed the summit of Scafell Pike it has been with head down and compass out due to little or no visibility, sliding about over the slippery rock strewn summit with nothing to hang around for - my mountain nemesis!
To add insult to injury it wasn't just myself that the views from the summit were reluctant to reveal themselves to! Undertaking the National 3 Peaks for charity over the first weekend of July 2012 with Ellie, Chrissy, Jodie & Richard we thought we may of had half a chance of a rewarding view but we were met with a heavy mist & constant rain from the start, which were joined by strong winds on the summit!
With a high pressure system loitering over the UK I decided to beat the mountain spirits and headed for the Lake District to ascend Scafell Pike in the clear, still, winter conditions of mid February.
Setting off at approx 7am from Seathwaite I made my way 'quietly' through the farmyard towards Stockley Bridge where I stopped for a 'kit faff' to take a layer off.
Beginning a route from a cold valley floor can make kit selection a slight dilemma as though the air temperature may be very cold, and the ice and snow on the ground suggests it is very cold, you may begin to warm up very quickly whilst walking. This is where a layering system made up of a number of layers that can be reduced to prevent overheating or added to for insulation is important.
|Following the route along 'Grains Gill' towards 'Ruddy Gill'.|
|Col from 'Broad Crag' to 'Scafell Pike'|
If only more women gave me that 'I want your equipment look'!
Entering into a conversation whilst gently enquiring if all was well I was further alarmed to hear that an ice axe had been left back at the car in the thought it wouldn't be needed.
N.B winter conditions in the mountains should never be underestimated!
I was relieved to hear that they would be taking a less hazardous route of descent.
|The reward for a winter ascent & beating the mountain spirits!|
|Rocking horse shit views from Scafell Pike.|
|Scafell Pike to Scafell.|
|Approaching Scafell Pike summit on a summers day July 12!|