Log 20 Oct 2012

YORKSHIRE DALES WEEKEND 19-21 OCTOBER 2012

A rocking, rolling, freewheeling weekend of fine weather, great days and riotous evenings based at Lowstern, the Yorkshire Ramblers Club cottage by Clapham.   The highlight was probably Saturday's round of the 3 three peaks (Pen y Ghent, Whernside, Ingleborough), albeit with car-assist, by Dave K, Alex, Phil and Noelle; while over 3 days Koon and Malcolm, accompanied at various times by Noelle and Phil, clocked up 11.5 rock climbs (sport and trad) on 4 crags.   Perhaps most memorable was Moughton Nab crag, a limestone scar that sits atop the hill and looks straight down into the vast pit of Dry Rigg quarry, giving a sense of exposure matched only by Malham Cove.   However, Castlebergh crag (in the very centre of the picturesque town of Settle); Giggleswick Scar (sheltered by beautiful autumn woods) and Twistleton Scar all yielded fine climbs.  
Other outings included the Howgill Fells (Fraser, Allan, Phil); Ingleborough (Fraser, Allan); Whernside (Fraser), Fountains Fell (Dave, Alex) and a mass visit to Malham Cove to gawk at the sheer audacity of routes up the beetling limestone cliffs.

After a trial run on Friday, the New Inn at Clapham provided excellent beer and food on Saturday evening to accompany the, sometimes over-boisterous, craic ( no names, no pack drill but you know who...).

Many thanks to the YRC for use of their lovely hut.
Report by Malcolm Hodgins


SATURDAY 20 OCTOBER THE THREE PEAKS
 
Noelle, Dave, Alex and Phil left the Yorkshire Ramblers’ Club cottage at Lowstern just before 8am to drive to the start of the expedition at Ribblehead on the B6255 (OS grid Ref.) SD764791.  The weather was dry, but cold and misty on the summits.
We headed NW along a good path that turned underneath the viaduct, then past Gunnerfleet and Winterscales farms.  Just past Winterscales we took a boggy path NE to Whernside ridge, then north to the summit (736m).  The downhill route took us south along the ridge for 1km, then down to meet the B6255 at SD742776.
Ingleborough was the next challenge, and we picked up the well-travelled path south, passing Braithwaite Wife Hole and Humphrey Bottom, as well as some remarkable limestone rock formations.  The path itself had been turned into a pavement and a staircase, and by this time was getting busy – rather like walking up Buchanan Street (a touch of hyperbole for the sake of emphasis).  The summit plateau was misty, and who should emerge from the miasma but Fraser descending.  After an exchange of pleasantries, we proceeded to the trig pillar (724m) and then discussed walking to Pen-y-ghent and back (about 17km). 
However, we wanted to return before dark, so headed back to the car along a muddy path NNE over Park Fell.  We went three different routes for the last 2km, but Dave clearly chose the best as he was at the car first.  We had time for a bowl of soup and a drink at the inn before driving to Brackenbottom, just off the B6479.
The car was parked off the road just beyond the school at SD812723 and, at about 3pm, we took the well-marked track east to join the Pennine Way.  The Pennine Way climbed steeply up the southern profile of Pen-y-ghent, and this was probably the most enjoyable climbing of the day.  There were lovely views from the top (694m), the mist having cleared.  After a short break we continued along the Pennine Way towards Horton.  200m before the village there was a signed path and a footbridge over a stream that took us directly back to the school and the car (by 5.30pm).

A tiring but very worthwhile day.  Thanks to Alex for all the driving.
Report by Phil Barlow


FOUNTAINS FELL SUNDAY 21 OCTOBER 2012
 
Sunday started out with a MMC 8 person bimble from Malham National Trust Car Park to Malham Cove.  Lots of photos taken, as it was a sunny day.  Saw climbers with a clipstick on the limestone face.
From there, Dave K and Alex struck overland towards Malham Tarn.  Halfway there we picked up the Pennine way, and then followed it all the long way to the top of Fountain's Fell.
At the top, catching our breath at the site of old mine workings, admiring the view, and having a quick bite, we remarked that we had seen very few walkers after Malham Tarn.
'Here comes one, to meet us' says Dave.  Then a couple of minutes later 'He's not wearing any clothes ... it must be the Naked Rambler'.  Sure enough, naked, apart from sunhat, pack and plastic bag, he rambles towards us.
'I'll have to get a picture to show my wife' says Dave and shoots off to meet him. I'm more of a retiring cove and headed back down the track, with Dave meeting me some 10 minutes later after getting the shot.
We hurried back, as I had miscalculated the time it would take for the round.  6 not 5 hours would be realistic.  Managed to get to the car for 14:45 having arranged to meet at 14:30.
Fraser and Allan were sitting on the carpark verge, having gone round Malham Tarn followed by coffee and a pint of Old Peculiar on draft.  Dave joined us a while later. 
Drove back to Lowstern and met everyone else who had been trad climbing.  Cleaned up the hut, took out rubbish and then Dave and I left to go back home. 

On the way back, the car was not quite running smoothly, occasional juddering, but got home safely.  I wondered if part of the steering gear needed replacing.
Two days later the flywheel pulley delaminated, so the rubber bond between two metal castings sheared away, making a din like dustbin lids being smashed together. 
Turned out an expensive repair bill, but a good job it did not happen on the way there or back from the Dales.
Report by Alex Maclennan