As mentioned in our last post, between Christmas and new year we managed to squeeze in a little three day break in Keswick. We love the Lakes, it’s probably our favourite National Park in the UK. There’s something magical in climbing the magnificent peaks here and hiking along paths forged from footsteps long gone by.
For our second hike of the trip we decided to take a little stroll up Cat Bells. We were tired from our longer hike up Skiddaw the previous day, the weather was looking very grim and our reputation of becoming the Lazy Weekenders was seeping through. We chose this 4 mile hike from WalkLakes and set out on the icy roads to Hawse End.
Our ascent up to Skelgill bank was a slippery one indeed. Cat Bells is a popular hill all year round and the many footprints of the early birds had compacted the snow into an icy upward slope as our punishment for starting our hike late. Some light scrambling starts just after the Thomas Arthur Leonard memorial and continues up to Skelgill Bank and then onwards to Cat Bells. We love a good scrambling section and this was no different. It’s a very easy section and it was not hindered too much by the snow and ice as demonstrated by the many dogs bounding about the rocks.
There are many easy lines up from Skellgill bank to Cat Bells and we probably took one of the easiest routes (forgive us, it was raining A LOT). We quickly reached Cat Bells and the torrential rain eased to a more British drizzle and we caught a few snaps of the views from the summit.
Cat Bells has such a lovely trig point that I couldn’t resist to take a photo. It includes one of Wainwright’s wonderful summit diagrams which leave me in awe. I bought Troy the Wainwright Guides for his birthday a while ago and we thoroughly enjoy reading Wainwright’s take on the fells we’ve just climbed.
Soon enough, the rain returned and we trudged on with our route. We headed south over the Cat Bells summit, bearing east down many many steps before looping back north following a track that hugs the side of Cat Bells with a wonderful view up the mountain. Nothing is more satisfying than seeing where you’ve just hiked from.
There really is something magical that runs through the Lakes and the fells within it. Whats your favourite fells and scrambles in the Lakes? Let us know.