I missed my blog post yesterday, for which you will have to forgive me.  I try my best but sometimes other things get in the way, and yesterday was pure excitement and endeavour from start to finish.

Alcock Tarn (1)

The first walk of the holiday, to Alcock Tarn.

I began yesterday with a 50k bike ride just to keep the old joints and muscles in form, and in the afternoon, as if the morning’s exertions were not enough, we girded our proverbial loins and made the 931m ascent of Skiddaw, which I have since discovered is the sixth highest peak in England.

In retrospect undertaking such a climb after the biking may not have been the wisest thing, but, well, Skiddaw was just there and although the final ascent looked nearly vertical, over screes, we went for it and did it.  Back home it was steak, red wine, and the healthy aches of a peak overcome.

Apparently the stones of Skiddaw have a strange resonant quality, so much so that they have been turned into a musical instrument, the lithophone.  I had no idea such a thing existed, but now I feel I have to find one and have a listen to the kind of sound it produces.

I always liked walking but have only recently done any half serious climbing, and I relish the psychological battle of it, the partitioning of the journey into segments and rewards.  In a way it is like attacking the composing of a piece of music, slips and steps and detours, but then the reward of the completed ascent, that feeling of look how far we’ve come.

Skiddaw (7)

The route taken before the final attack on Skiddaw – starts with a single step and all that…

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