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Sunday, 23 January 2011

Flan Fuelled Cross Fell from Kirkland

bruno and cross fell snow
I don’t know why I suddenly decided to climb Cross Fell. It must have been lurking in the undermind.
And so, armed with a cheese and onion flan (only Southerners and the genetically effeminate eat quiche), a fine banana a mince pie (we still  have lots) and some fair trade chocolate, the knipemobile screeched to a halt in a shower of flying pebbles in the turning circle of the unoccupied holiday cottage village of Kirkland, on the windy side of Cross Fell.
bridleway up
There’s a nice bridleway which goes to Garrigill from here and it is this that we slipped over and nearly cracked both wrists on, and, after being suitably punished by an attack from superdawg using his ice-crunching powers, we followed gingerly through a fierce but brief snowstorm towards Gregs Hut. Gregs Hut is named after a famous North-East pie retailer. The extra “G” was lost during the doomsday survey.
Historical fact #1
superdawg attacks naughty ice
There’s no need to go as far as Gregs Hut, though, so we didn’t. Instead, just after tiptoeing over some well frozen but still somehow wobbly bogs, we turned off over the moor to the scree and snow slope that guards the equally frigid summit area.
cross fell summit 
Any thoughts of having a bit of a tarry in the summit shelter soon faded as the nithering wind discovered the chinks in the seventeen layers of thermal liberty bodices and merino stuff as I sat and scoffed the flan.  Bruno helped, in view of the urgency of avoiding a slow but probably quite enjoyable death from hypothermia and we soon sloped off and slithered off down the Pennine Way to find bridleway number two, which took us pleasantly back down the hill.
south to dun fells
We had a brief stop in some brief sunshine in a little shelter on the edge of a view of Eden, but we were soon off again.
cross fell 010
the edge
Just before we got back to Kirkland, I did notice some ancient ploughing terraces, and, found later, that these were, in fact the “Hanging Walls of Mark Anthony” Bugger all to do with Mark, actually, and much more likely to be lychets – terraces on a hillside created by repeated ploughing.  These things are all over the Pennines, as it happens – some really good ones at Eggleston in Teesdale. They’re quite good for botany because the plants on the little scarps are different from those on the flats. Have a look next time you find rows of long, green platforms on a hillside.
Anyway, we did just under 9 miles and 2300 feet of up. 
Be a man, scoff some flan. Just a tip, there.
cross fell


QDanT said...

“It must have been lurking in the undermined.”

Dante's Inferno again ! Rub yourself down with the Radio Times
If you'd smeared yourself in goose fat before pulling on the com's the Dawg probably has a chance of surviving before your remains are found !
cheers Danny

Mike Knipe said...

I used "undermind" cos I can;t spel subconcious... I can't say baccaruda either..
Goose fat? That would be a risky strategy with super stomach around...

The Odyssee said...

2300ft of up. I notice from the pics that K9 seems to be pulling you up.
It must be the weight of the Cheese and onion flan.

Smashing day out for you even in the bitter weather.

Mike Knipe said...

That's right, Alan. Bruno is, in fact, an artificial aid and, therefore, unethical. It'd be great if you wouldn't mention this to anybody.

James Boulter said...

Mmmmmm can't beat a nice quiche up on the hill.......

I am sorry to say that there is another Superdawg on the hills now. Bruno has a blogging rival. Just a shame that he can't climb a stile in a dignified manner......

Mike Knipe said...

Ah, bless 'im. Have you applied for his provisional licence yet?

Tilly said...

When we walked over Crossfell when on the Pennine Way it as throwing it down with rain and thick fog all day, I never saw a thing which was perhaps as well as I would have been more worried was I able to see just how far the horrendous wind would have been able to blow me!

Mike Knipe said...

There's certainly a lot of space down to the east, Tilly - plenty of room to get a bit dislocated in.
I've been pretty lucky with visibility up there - just one nasty day, when I was doing the Pennine Way(!)

Fell Finder said...

Went up Cross Fell last weekend for the first time after a trek in it's self from langwathby station! The weather was great!. However the place stood up to it's reputation, by the time I was half way back to Langwathby, on my way home, the weather swallowed the Fell completely.
It looked bitter from your pics that day. Respect for climbing her in January!!

Mike Knipe said...

Its miles to Langwathby! Miles and miles and miles....
I quite like Cross fell. Never had a warm day up there, though...