Really last minute decision last Friday to go and do a wild camp up in the Lake District. The weather as we know had been very poor all week, but with the weather looking set to improve over the bank holiday weekend I couldn’t resist going as my plans for the weekend I had previously had fell through. After a suggestion from a friend Andy Beck to go to Fleetwith Pike for a wild camp, this is where I ended up going.
I’m sort of ashamed to say even though it was mainly out of my control for the most part that I hadn’t been to the Lake District for over a year so it was good to return, really good. That said I must admit my fondness of the area had worn off a little as everything seemed so flat and soft compared to the likes of Skye.
I arrived at 4pm in Buttermere after a hellish drive due to bank holiday traffic but still had plenty of time. I made my ascent up Fleetwith Pike, a ridge walk which is fairly steep but this time carrying my Nex and with the terrain much easier than Sgurr Na Stri I found it a pleasant enough walk without feeling like it was trying to kill me. I got to the top at around 5:30pm and had plenty of time to kill.
The views on the way up were amazing throughout, stopping every now and again to take a breather and look at the view over Buttermere and Crummock Water. I hadn’t been up Fleetwith Pike before and loved its sense of grand views and it felt secluded. However I did make the mistake of having a walk at the top and saw Honister Slate Mine and all the old via geila equipment lying around which spoilt a lot of the appeal for me. I’m all for local businesses being needed in the area and even support “blots on the landscape” if it means they provide jobs to the local community…but this just took the magic out of the mountain for me a little.
I walked back to where I had decided I was to camp before and met a lovely couple from Buxton who had decided to camp too. I pitched up and being a nice calm evening and lots of grassy spots I had a rare luxury of pitching where I wanted and was able to pitch my tent with the porch looking out across the grand view. Not a bad place to spend the evening. Here was my pitch as the sun went down: