That wasn’t supposed to happen! The weather was predicted to be the same as yesterday, blue skies and general loveliness above the clouds – however, rule #1 is there is no accounting for the weather. There was a strong wind and grey skies above the low lying fog with the upper clouds only clearing at the very end of the walk. This was a good long walk on the shortest day of the year and the fells were surprisingly busy today.
No blue skies today, it was back to grey and it all looked a bit ominous at the start of the walk up to The Old Man of Coniston. Things magically cleared up in the space of a few minutes on the climb though and whilst the sun didn’t shine, it was still clearer than we could have expected at the start.
Overnight storms have freshened things up a little giving a cool breeze at times and bringing a mixed bag of cloud and sunshine. Surprisingly, there weren’t many people around today – even The Old Man summit was quiet which makes a change (when Angus got there, the peaceful atmosphere disappeared!).
It didn’t look too promising when I set off along the Walna Scar Road and sure enough when I reached Brown Pike the wind was gale force and the hailstones were shotblasting my face. Magically, when I reached Dow Crag, the clouds cleared (blown away presumably!) and there were lovely blue skies. The wind was ever present and made the walking difficult at times; full winter gear was required today. Today was the first time I have ever been recognised on the fells from this website (okay, Angus was recognised to be technically correct). He’s famous that dog!
Connie had better things to do today so it was up to Coniston for me and Angus. The weather was variable with the odd spot of rain but there were generally good views, especially when we got to Swirl How. It was really busy up there today so we went the quietest way we could – straight up the nose of the Old Man and returning via Boulder Valley. Both are much quieter than the popular routes.
This morning’s walk was an ascent of The Old Man of Coniston using a less popular route via Boo Tarn up the south face which I can highly recommend; similarly the descent from Brim Fell was using a less popular route from Brim Fell down to Low Water. It was quite warm this morning and the sun shone on occasions – it was nice to get onto the tops early enough to be on my own.