A couple of holdups put us back a while but it probably did us a favour with parking the car. It’s still kids holiday season and we were heading for Dockray, just west of Ullswater where parking is limited at the best of times. I wanted to park in a definite spot i knew, where the car would be safe for the weekend. We were lucky with just a space left.
The rucksacks seemed heavy, i had taken my Deuter Air Contact 40 + 10 which isn’t a light rucksack empty to start with, but it’s a nice rucksack and comfortable so i had decided to give it an outing. Sheila had her only rucksack which is the OMM Jarishinca. It’s a touch small for multi day hiking especially with a winter sleeping bag installed. She needs a new sack.
Weather wise we were lucky again, the predicted rain was holding off and so the walk to our intended overnight camp at Rowantree sheep fold at NY343 219 was very pleasant.
The Old Coach road between Dockray and the Vale of St Johns is a good track and one which was new to me. A few good wild camp spots were noted for future reference.
The views opened up across Barbaryrigg Moss and it was great to see Skiddaw and Blencathra with the white mantle of cloud which seems permanent at this time of year.
Once we reached Mariel Bridge the Coach Road was left and the track taken following Mosedale Beck to the sheep fold.
The track is horrible, the whole way is bog after bog. Just a huge sponge. On reflection it probably would have been a better option to walk on the opposite side of the beck and cross over the water to get to the sheep fold, but hindsight is a wonderful thing.
We plodded on and it started hail stoning. Then it started snowing. The sheepfold came into view non too soon. Our trousers were wet through with the constant sinking down to the knees. Would the sheepfold be dry we wondered because if it was then it would be the only patch of land. If it wasn’t then God Forbid.
Thankfully it was dry and the snow shower petered out. We got the tent up and brewed up. Then got the trousers out to blow dry on the fencing rails. It wasn’t warm enough to sit out, especially without trousers on.
The water in the beck flowed well so getting water was no problem. We just enjoyed the peace and quiet, the view down stream and the gradual approach of darkness. The fell sides above us were shrouded in mist and not long after we had eaten our Pasta and Tuna followed by Birds Custard it started to snow again. Grabbing the trousers inside before we forgot them we battened down the hatches and hoped it didn’t snow all night.
Lets hope tomorrow is fine.
Crossing a ford on the Old Coach Road.
Skiddaw is somewhere in the mist. (Right).
Mosedale Beck and Rowantree sheepfold.