Three long mountainous journies.

Once the clocks go forward the scope for long mountain adventures begins. I undertook three relatively long trips, one in each month: April, May, June 2009. The first was an extended Lakes 3000s, the second an extended Welsh 3000s (covering 30 peaks), and the third a long route in excess of 30 peaks in the north west of the Lake District. All rounds were done as relatively ad-hoc outings (minor logistics involved!), and all done solo/unsupported. I partially slept on one of three rounds by choosing to carry a lightweight bivvy bag and sleeping bag. Generally I carried no more than 2 litres of water (about 1 litre on average) and filled from reliable streams. I certaintly took lots of food for which much was left over afterwards. Brief overview's are given below, but see the following linked pdf: LONG ROUTES which gives a detailed description of each round.

A Lakes 3000s variant.

Classical long distance runs in the Lakes extend the Lakeland 3000s, notably the Wakefield and Bob Graham round's. Suitable preparations for attempting these include trying fast Lakeland 3000s, Old County Tops or versions of these. As a prelude to various summer antics the following peaks were traversed (starting and finishing in Grasmere):

Seargent Man, High Raise, Great End, Ill Crag's, Broad Crag, Scafell Pike, Symonds Knott, Scafell, Great Gable, Green Gable, Brandreth, Grey Knotts, Dale Head, Hindscarth, Robinson, High Spy, Mainden Moor, Cat Bells, Skiddaw Little Man, Skiddaw, Clough Head, Great Dodd, Stybarrow Dodd, Raise, Whiteside, Helvelly Low Man, Helvellyn.

The route covered circa 55 miles and 19500ft. The time taken was circa 22 hours as a continuous non-stop traverse and I was admittedly starting to flake after climbing Skiddaw: the initial plan being to also add in Fairfield and some other peaks within a 20 hour schedule. The weather was favourable except for the thunderstorm just as I was about to set out from Grasmere!

North Snowdonia 30 peak traverse.

There is certainly scope for extending the Welsh 3000s route, and in mid-May 2009 I found a natural line going from Llanfairfechan to Beddgelert. Starting from Llanfairfechan shore and finishing in Beddgelert village the following peaks were taken in:

Drum, Foel Fras, Garnedd Uchaf, Foel Grach, Carnedd Llyelyn, Yr Elen, Carnedd Dafydd, Pen y Ole Wen, Tryfan, Glyder Fach, Castell y Gwyny, Glyder Fawr, Y Garn, Foel-goch, Mynydd Perfedd, Elidir Fawr, Crib Goch, Garnedd Ugain, Snowdon, Bwlch Main, Yr Aran, Y Garn, Mynydd Drws-y-coed, Trum y Ddysgl, Mynydd Tal-y-mignedd, Craig Cwm Silyn, Y Gyrn, Moel Lefn, Moel yr Ogof, Moel Hebog.

The route covers circa 43 miles and 21000 ft of ascent and there is much scope for scrambling on Tryfan, the Glyder's, Snowdon and the Nantlle ridge. I had the pleasure to incorporate a few scrambles but I underestimated the schedule to a degree and had to ensure I made Snowdon before nightfall. The time taken from point to point was 24 hours dead, but this included almost 6 hours sleep/bivvy near the 704m spot height off south Snowdon.

North-West Lakeland Adventure.

The weekend closest to June 21st is the usual day for midsummer madness in the hills. This year was no exception. Previous years have featured various other long distance attempts: some successful but some to be reconciled at a later date!. This year I preferred to choose a long route that seemed more achievable (with flexibility), gave good mountain interest and gave a relatively easy night section. The following peaks were traversed (starting in Grasmere and eventually finishing in Seatoller):

Blea Rigg, Pavey Ark, Harrison Stickle, Loft Carg, Pike o Stickle, Great End, Ill Crags, Broad Crag, Scafell Pike, Symonds Knott, Scafell, Yewbarrow, Red Pike, Steeple, Little Scoat Fell, Pillar, Looking Stead, Kirk Fell, Great Gable, Green Gable, Base Brown, Brandreth, Grey Knotts, Dale Head, Hindscarth, Robinson, Knott Rigg, Ard Crags, Sail, Eel Crag, Grasmoor, Whiteless Pike, Red Pike, High Stile, High Crag, Haystacks, Fleetwith Pike.

The route covered circa 50 miles, 23000ft and done as a continuous traverse in just under 23 hours. I scheduled in some extra peaks and also the possibility of going back to Grasmere via High Raise, but this grew increasingly unlikely after I chose to divert to Buttermere directly from Robinson (to avoid bogs in the dark). The going went fairly well, but generally started to slow after leaving Robinson.

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