"I don't normally associate Ambleside with the start of a hike. It's usually a place of sanctuary on our camping trips - a reminder of what it's like to be completely dry or how convenient it is to go to the toilet without having to put on shoes and a coat. But, the day after tackling Ullock Pike, filled with a new sense of adventure and apparently with no memory of the rougher parts of the day before, we decided to go South for our next Wainwright and parked up in Ambleside on a grey summer morning with a view to climbing Loughrigg Fell."
"When I was a child my favourite series of books was the Chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis. Completely oblivious to the Christian undertones of the stories, I read with delight and jealousy as the four Pevensie children adventured into the back of the wardrobe and discovered a magical world where animals could talk. I longed to find Narnia. Didn't we all? Who else can admit to checking (head butting) the back of a few cupboards or trying to strike up a conversation with a horse (surely not just me)?"
"Like a small child I tried every excuse to return to the car: 'I feel sick. I feel faint. I need a wee.' Then a little later and a little more forcefully, 'I am going to be sick. I am going to pass out. I am going to piss myself. I am going to die.' When none of these petitions succeeded in shattering the rock that is Pete's determination to get me up mountains, I merely focused on slowly putting one foot in front of the other, head bowed in submission, muttering terrible things under my breath about Pete, about Skiddaw and about my total inability to just push through 'the wall.' Lots of people overtook us and I mentally gave each one of them the finger for having better stamina than I could muster."
"We didn't fall into any of the disused lead mines nor did we meet Mrs. Tiggy-winkle, Beatrix Potter's loveable hedgehog washer-woman who lived behind a 'door into the back of the hill called Catbells.' I can only assume that lead poisoning must have gotten the better of her."
"What better way to begin all 214 Wainwrights than with the tallest one?"
"This is a blog about struggling uphill (literally, not metaphorically). If you like reading about the hiking experiences of others as much as I do or you just want to see lots of nice photographs of the English Lake District then this is the blog for you. I also hope it might help others like me who want to climb the Wainwright Fells but like to research their fell walks before they venture out."