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Spring Walks 2015 - The Coledale Round - Sunday May 3rd

By Nigel Koenen & David Shepherd

Advanced group containing 7 people and 1 dog, met up in Braithwaite at app 9.45am and we started our walk following road up WINLATTER PASS branching off left up a muddy track onto KINN which was the start of the COLEDALE HORSESHOE; as we ascended the wind and rain increased and the visibility reduced.

As we scrambled up GRIZEDALE PIKE 791 METRES; it became very difficult, finding the route, with a large buffeting from the wind and rain, and it required much concentration to keep ones footing!

We circumnavigated and staggered up HOPEGILL HEAD- 770METRES, where we managed to get a brief glimpse of our surroundings.

Coming down SANDHILL into COLEDALE HAUSE; we dropped into relative shelter, and had lunch looking west down GASGATE GILL; the writer was, at this stage, suffering fatigue due to a 6.00am start from south mcr; and with the weather still looking bad on the summits, he decided to descend into the valley between the 2 ridges under FORCE CRAG and past the old mine onto a pleasant level track into complete calm and shelter meanwhile the rest of the group carried on up EEL CRAG 807 MTS and turned left at a crossroads of 4 tracks up CRAG HILL 839MTS, and down towards SAIL 773MTS.

At this time the sun started to appear and the sky cleared to give the writer and the rest of the group pleasant views of Keswick and adjacent lakes with all their colours!!

The writer was looking for distant figures, of his friends, as they passed over STILE END 447MTS and BARROW 455MTS.

We finally met up in COLEDALE INN beer garden at 4.00pm for some well deserved beer.

We all agreed it was a great horseshoe route with [when sky cleared] fine views of the beautiful valleys.....................Nigel Koenen

As for the rest of the walk.
After a short hike up into the mist, the sun started to break through, the wind was minimal to non-existent later on.

After we went over Sail.
Thereafter the views to Skiddaw and all points east and s/east were glorious. The path split on the way to Barrow, and 3 members of the group opted for the high road which took them very slightly higher than expected but soon it merged back onto the lower track where the main party were waiting with Dolly the dog very effectively camouflaged in the heather. Thence onto Barrow from where it was t-shirt and sun hat weather down to the sunny upper terrace of the Coledale Inn's beer garden for well-earned drinks.......Dave Sheppherd

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