Troutbeck Tongue and a String of Cockups!

17 05 2014

April 2014
Our April Lakes trip was a bit of a shambles – all my fault – I just don’t seem to pack my brain recently! First off was when we drove to Staveley near Windermere for our weekend’s booked accommodation at The Old Rectory. This was the Saturday night of the start of the Easter Holidays so due to be a busy one…

(Photos are a mix of Richard’s and mine as marked – click on for full size/resolution)
We called in at one of the pubs for a drink and to ask where Church Street was as we couldn’t seem to find it either on the town map or walking around checking by the various churches. The barmaid seemed puzzled – she didn’t know a Church Street. She asked the barman – I thought he was sure to know as he seemed more local. Nope – he didn’t know it either. He asked for the name of our B&B and said he’d look it up on t’internet… He came back a minute or so later and informed us we had several hours drive to get to it! I’d inadvertently booked our accommodation at a Staveley in Derbyshire! I had no idea there was another Staveley apart from THE Staveley in the Lakes!

The next hour or so was spent in a phone box calling the accommodation to cancel (and of course to pay for our first night – they weren’t best pleased), then to ring around the local accommodation to try to get somewhere for the night. We seemed to be completely out of luck – even the really expensive places were full! In the end I ran out to the information board outside and saw one place we hadn’t rung yet – down Kentmere at Green Quarter. Lucky I rang when I did as they were just off out – they had a room for both nights they said but could we hurry down there.

Five minutes later we were booking in at the truly beautiful (both in form and location) farmhouse of Maggs Bank. I vaguely remembered rushing down off the end of the Kentmere Horseshoe for refreshments there on a hot day a few years back. She said that, not only do they still do teas but they also allow cars to park cheaply (proceeds to charity) in their yard to do the round.

We went upstairs happily to unpack – cockup no.2 soon hit me. I’d completely forgotten to bring any of my medication or my washbag and we were away for a week! Oh well, my asthma was well-controlled (I thought). Also the bathroom had all sorts of useful stuff including, luckily, a toothbrush and paste pack.

As mentioned in my previous post, both Richard and I are fairly lame just now, both having groin strains, so we had to stick to easy walks. The first day we just did Sallows and Sour Howes and I had a bimble onto Green Quarter Fell/Hollow Moor afterwards past Skeggles Water.

Skeggles Water

On the Monday we were due to move on to The White Lion Pub in Patterdale so we decided to do Troutbeck Tongue on the drive round. For a change, it was a gloriously warm and sunny day ๐Ÿ™‚ We parked up at the main road layby just above Limefitt Park and booted up for the short stroll up the main road to the footpath into the bottom of the valley. We didn’t realise at this point that, just over the wall, a nice new footpath had been made to keep you off the road.

No matter, we were soon leaving the busy road down the stony path between two hedges. This was a walk I used to do quite often with my mother back when she was fit – happy days!

At the bottom of the stony path, you join a lovely flat lane which heads up the middle of the valley towards the Tongue.

Road to Troutbeck Tongue and barn
Troutbeck Tongue is above the barn

Troutbeck Tongue Road Approach

Troutbeck Tongue Approach

I was amused by this pollarded tree which I called ‘The Shaving Brush Tree’ – I got Richard to take a photo…

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Soon you leave the lane just before the farm (good job too as, when my Mum and I passed through there a few years ago, we found the farm dogs pretty wild and savage) then strike up across the field to rejoin the track after the farm.

Troutbeck Tongue from Farm

I couldn’t remember how we used to access the end of the fell but, as that is the most exciting way up, I was determined to take Richard up that way. I remembered last time me and my mother having to climb an awkward fence on the steep fellside though…

I was pleased to see that, after we rounded the corner and the wall under the fell ended, there were tracks heading steeply up the side of the steep nose. I could see the fence up ahead though and, as Richard hates climbing fences, and it isn’t easy anyway with groin strain, I hoped there would be a stile – luckily there was.

As we puffed steeply up the hill I found that my supposedly well-controlled asthma was a myth – only controlled by the daily preventative inhalers I take. Pretty soon my chest tightened up and I was coughing and wheezing badly. To my great annoyance, Richard started to draw ahead and I couldn’t keep up with him at all – it used to be the other way around! ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

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Oh dear!

I eventually staggered up to the summit, by now very asthmatic and also my leg had started to seize, and collapsed at the cairn for a rest and a coffee…

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After I’d sat coughing for a while, we decided it was time to continue – I took this photo back to the summit and past Troutbeck to Windermere…

Troutbeck Tongue Summit to Windermere

After a long walk along the top of the fell, we found the path which cuts back underneath back to our initial valley of Hag Gill. It should have been a really pleasant walk back down the valley but my leg was now almost completely seized and my chest was awful – what a shame on such a lovely day. I decided we’d cut across to the other track down the valley on the way back for interest.

Threshthwaite Mouth from Hag Gill
Looking back
Threshthwaite Mouth up Hag Beck

This route takes you past what I fondly call ‘Thunder Barn’. When I was initially ‘doing the Wainwrights’, I’d walked along the Dubs Track and was a few minutes from the summit of my first fell of the day, Yoke. At that point it started to thunder so I immediately fled down into the valley (which is much lower than my starting point had been on the Dubs Track). Good job I did – the thunderstorm was exceedingly fierce and lasted for an hour and a half. I found the handy barn and hid in it peering out of the windows at the ridge and seeing my proposed hills getting repeatedly and regularly struck by lightning!

After the storm abated, I gave it another half hour just to be sure and then, by now late in the day, I headed up Scot Rake to the far end of the ridge to walk back along my hills to the car. I got back to the car at 10pm! Richard kindly opted to take some photos of my barn hideaway for my report…

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Thunder Barn!

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(photo Richard Wood)

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(photo Richard Wood)

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(photo Richard Wood)

The track back was both wetter and busier – there were many folks from Limefitt Park caravan site strolling along in the sunshine…

Hag Gill from Troutbeck Tongue Return
Last look back (my photo)

We’d originally planned to do another hill in the afternoon but, with my chest and now-rigid leg, we decided to take the rest of the day off – Richard wasn’t bothered anyway as he felt we’d done enough for the day. We ended up booking in at The White Lion and then strolling down to St. Patricks Boat Landing at Glenridding and admiring the lovely, calm Ullswater where Richard took this beautiful photo:

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14 responses

27 05 2014
Dan

Don’t go to Staveley, Derbyshire unless you like old diesel locomotives. Incidentally you’re not the only one to get your Staveleys mixed up. There used to be a map of Staveley (in Cartmel) pinned up at Staveley (with Ings) station.

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27 05 2014
mountaincoward

Funnily enough, I do actually like old diesel locos ๐Ÿ™‚ Especially Type 37s and Deltics.

I didn’t even realise there were two Staveleys in the Lakes until Simon pointed it out in the comments lower down! And I always thought I was good at British geography…
Carol.

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20 05 2014
bob

A valley I’ve not been up yet and a hill I’ve not yet climbed. Richard must be a rich man to prefer hotels over tents. My natural meanness and waver thin wallet would never allow me to sleep in a hotel if I can doss down in a field somewhere. Tents are Cool.. especially in winter :o(

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23 05 2014
mountaincoward

He could do with cheaper tastes now he’s early-retired – but I have to say he seems to be doing okay financially – a lot better than I’ll be doing when I retire at the normal age ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

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19 05 2014
McEff

That was a good read, Carol. If it’s any consolation, we always manage to book the right place but get the wrong dates.
All the best, Alen

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19 05 2014
mountaincoward

I’m definitely getting scattier about bookings this year – I’ve just found a form for a holiday let booking at Glen Shiel which I should have sent off a few months ago – we’re due there at the start of next month! ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

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19 05 2014
McEff

At least with Glen Shiel there are a couple of camp sites if it turns out you’re double booked. Better take a tent just in case.
Alen

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20 05 2014
mountaincoward

Richard won’t sleep in a tent – he’d be thumbing to Kyle and getting the long train journey home! ๐Ÿ˜‰

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18 05 2014
chrisharrison2013

It’s a beautiful valley, but I suppose any ascent is a challenge with the asthma. I also thought you were going to say you’d booked into another lake District Staveley. I’m sure it’s easily done. (Ahem!)
Chris

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18 05 2014
mountaincoward

I’m going to have to be quite a bit more careful with my booking procedures I think!

I really thought my asthma had gone away and was just taking the preventers ‘just in case’ – now I know I was wrong and I still have it ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

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18 05 2014
chrissiedixie

I haven’t got asthma, but it often causes problems on school trips when children forget to bring their inhalers, and then we refuse to take them on the trip until one arrives from home!

Probably not the best decision in the world to do that walk without your medication………. ๐Ÿ™‚

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18 05 2014
mountaincoward

I didn’t think I really had asthma any more – but it was just the preventers keeping it subdued after all ๐Ÿ˜ฆ I did better on subsequent days fortunately – I think the very steep ascent got me. I did another very steep ascent a day or so later but we took it very steady… A lot of it is breathing control and how you breathe which sets off the asthma.

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18 05 2014
fedup

You couldn’t mistakenly get the other Staveley in Cumbria you had to go the whole hog and get one in another county! Missed you by about a week I was up Kentmere/Skeggles Water the week after.

Looking at Troutbeck Tongue its easy to underestimate the ascent, despite its small stature it certainly energy sapping. Nice pictures up Hagg Gill to Threshthwaite ๐Ÿ™‚

Hope you’ve made a check list for the 31st :O

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18 05 2014
mountaincoward

I think I’m going to have to. I’ve just been on a Scotland trip and was hostelling and going to camp – I realised I’d forgotten towels this time – also a lock for my bike. Luckily, I stayed at a friend’s B&B the first night so they lent me everything until on the way back.

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