After climbing Mount Ngauruhoe as part of the Tongariro Crossing in New Zealand in February 2013, I made a promise to myself that when I got back to the UK I would make an effort to do more hiking in my own country.
I arrived back in the UK in March 2013, and it took me 5 months to build up to it, but in August 2013 I climbed Scafell Pike.
Scafell Pike is one of the ‘three peaks’ and stands at 978 metres (3,209 ft) tall, the highest mountain in England.
It took us around 3 ½ hours to drive from our home in Cheshire, to Eskdale in Cumbria, where we stayed in the night at Irton Hall. Irton Hall was a great choice for us as we managed to get a last minute deal through booking.com, plus it was only 30 minutes’ drive from Wasdale Head, the start of the trek up Scafell Pike.
The following morning we filled up on a hearty full English breakfast, and set off for Wasdale Head. We arrived at Wasdale Head at around 10am to start our climb. The car park was extremely busy, but as we arrived relatively early we managed to get a space.
To fuel our climb we took a couple of cans of diet coke, and some biscuits and fruits to keep us going. Although I would certainly not recommend diet coke – definitely take WATER!
In terms of clothing, I wore jogging bottoms, a thermal top, a t-shirt and I took a rain jacket with me. The weather for our climb was dry and not overly hot/cold – perfect. I’d read prior to our climb that people advise taking a tent – I certainly WOULD NOT recommend this. You should be prepared for the weather to change, i.e. plenty of layers and wet weather gear, however it is a relatively easy climb so it is unlikely you’d get stuck up there!
The route we took to the top was the one detailed here – it was very well signposted from the car park at Wasdale Head. You can’t miss the car park, it sits in front of the Wasdale Head Inn and I’d guess there would be space for around 100 cars.
We managed to climb up and then descend Scafell Pike in 3 hours, and the clouds did part for a little while when we were at the top – bonus.
Next up – Ben Nevis and Snowdon!