Christmas shopping in Lancaster: it may not be a typical hike but it did involve several hours of solid walking, intricate navigation through the back streets of the city and an overwhelming desire to accomplish the entire mission in one expedition. Recklessly I left my head torch, map and compass at home and pinned my hopes on Lancaster City Council's streetlighting and signage departments; luckily they didn't let me down.
There was a good degree of camaraderie amongst my fellow hikers though I did notice that on this particular hike there were far fewer men than I usually see out on the fells. I can only assume that the arduous nature of the route had proven too much for them and they were most likely at home with a pie and a pint bravely planning their next assault on an empty grassy hillside.
Sunday, 4 December 2011
|Helm Crag, up close.|
The walk itself was pretty uneventful but as it was our first time out in these conditions it was an opportunity to learn. If you're an old hand at this sort of stuff then you'll probably laugh at what I'm about to say, but cast your minds back to the fist time you were out in winter and try not to be too harsh.
Firstly I learned that I need a pair of waterproof overgloves as my wonderfully warm gloves became an icey cold block of sogginess pretty darned quickly, not helped by the fact that I have a rubbish sense of balance so have to hold on to stuff a lot. I also learned that I need more hot drinks and less cold squash and lunch breaks in these conditions require you to be able to neck a sarnie in 60 seconds flat - without getting hiccups. My boots, as ever, did an amazing job keeping my feet dry and toasty and the gaffa tape on my waterproof trousers thankfully stayed put.
|A very festive dusting of snow.|