A delight of a day

23rd April

A delight of a day. I was a *model* for @paulbesleywriter as he walked, photographed, and took notes on a walk in the Dark Peak for an article for a special interest magazine 😉. The sun shone, and amongst a lot of wildlife, we were privileged to see five mountain hares. Nine hours wandering and nattering and munching cream cakes and a few stops for a nice sit down. And the source of the Derwent too. It was a joy to be entertained by @searchdogscout too. I’d forgotten the restorative qualities of ‘just’ walking. Many thanks to Paul and Scout 🙏

happy birthday Millican

A woodbine and a quick read of the paper.

Millican Dalton was born 154 years ago today at Neathead, Alston. I would urge you to read widely about his life.

I had the great pleasure as a youth of living in his splendid ‘hotel’ in Borrowdale for half a year. We would chat every morning as i made coffee on his belvedere.

His was a life lived fully. Happy birthday marra x

a little bit of effort …

‘I know’, i said to myself at 6pm on a Saturday evening whilst absent-mindedly googling my own name and eating a fist size chunk of Swiss cheese……, ‘i’ll put 20kg in a rucksack, and my big boots on, and see if i can dip in under the 30 minute (Mountain Rescue team fitness assessment) cut-off for the 300m / 980ft 1.3km ascent of Win Hill via Parkin Clough from Yorkshire Bridge.

As you do ….

It served to remind me why i never guide this walk with clients. It’s hideous on the way up (see photo !), and borderline dangerous in descent, slippy in the dusty dry, and like a bobsleigh chute in crap weather.

It also served to remind me that i’m not 23 and living in Aldershot anymore.

Nice views from the top mind …..

Tips: How to buy backpacking gear – Andrew Skurka

Good, solid, HONEST advice, backed up with sheds of experience.

The sort of outdooserists that pour scorn on the likes of Decathlon for being shit are the type of outdoorserists that spend nowhere near enough time *actually* outside to justify that opinion.

Over 75% of my outdoor gear (and there’s a LOT of it) comes from eBay.

Buy shit buy twice
Have a ‘Swiss Army Knife Mindset’ (multiple use items)
Pack in ‘systems’ depending on activity, duration, and weather
Remember that 99.9% of the idolised influencers trying to persuade you to buy that thingy were given it for free

Anecdotally – there’s a small outdoor clothing manufacturer near Manchester UK that spent a long time evolving the very best belay jacket ever made. Many a high profile sponsored awesome alpinist bough that jacket (aka the Zeta) with their own money and wore it when the chips really were down in the mountains … but just didn’t let their sponsors see !!

oh, and learn from experience (preferably you’re own) !!

Tips: How to buy backpacking gear – Andrew Skurka

learning assets for Burbage Valley

Some resources i have been using to better understand the human and natural history of Burbage. Carrying a Chris Goddard map for the area will illuminate countless places of interest ….