The weather has been so dreadful since November that there have been very few lovely days. There was a good one back on 27th February, though, and so Piggle and I nipped up to the Lakes to do the Fairfield Horseshoe.
In relative weathery terms it was a great day: dry and sunny, with the promise of a scattering of snow on the tops. Unfortunately, however, anticipation of the snow failed to alert me to the wisdom of packing my elasticated mini-crampon thingies–doh–which led to a great deal of rather scary slipping and sliding on the steeper sections higher up, and particularly on the descent from Fairfield towards Hart Crag. Piggle has her own built-in little crampons, of course, and couldn’t understand why I was proceeding so slowly, and sideways, like some sort of huge disorientated crab. She’s grown used to my foibles, though, and so she forgave me in the end.
As we were descending I stopped for a moment, and noticed a couple some distance away who looked very familiar. They were on the way up, and they turned out to be John Manning and Steph Hughes. I’ve not seen them for years, and it was nice to stop for a few minutes to catch up.
(The last time I saw them, in fact, and upon reflection, was the last time I went up to the Lakes–that time with a friend from work–to do the Fairfield Horseshoe. We stopped on the way home to eat, and we ran into them in the restaurant. How spooky is that?!)
Anyway… they’d been sensible enough to remember their crampons, and so as Piglet and I slid on down the hill they got out their crampons and prepared to make their way rather more safely to the top.
The descent towards Ambleside always begins to feel like a bit of a chore–all that relentless down, Down, DOWN–but I’d forgotten about the awkward step. I think it’s just below Low Pike. That formed a bit of a distraction for a few minutes, because little Piglet doesn’t like heights any more than I do, and she did a bit of squeaking with fear as I manoeuvred her in her little carrying harness. Or maybe that was because she thought I might drop her…
Anyway, we got safely down in the end, and for what I think must be the first time in my whole life I drove straight home without stopping for a look around the kit shops!
We did stop, in fact, but not until Windermere, because I’d been harbouring a macaroni cheese plan since somewhere around Rydal Fell. Sadly, though, the yummy ready-made macaroni cheese in the special frozen section at Booths required 45 minutes’ cooking, and so I settled for pizza instead. Piglet ate a little tub of dog food in the car park to keep her going on the journey, and then went to sleep in her crate.
Catty had thoughtfully set the fire for us, and so it wasn’t long before the three of us were snuggled up in our PJs, sharing the pizza and catching up with something on the television. Roll on the drier weather!