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August 2021

April 2021

outdoor activities lake district and training

lake district wild camping 

family days

April 2021

So April saw a few Lake District wild camping adventures! Douglas wanted to go out into the wilderness and hone and learn the wild camping craft.

Luckily the weather was fine and kind for him (which always helps anytime, but especially your first time)

Fill those gaps!

We first looked at the number one priority of packing a bag. This you may be rolling your eyes at, but believe me it’s an art form! And can be refined over many years. In a nutshell, the more you bring the heavier your bag will be…and make sure you fill the gaps! So spare socks and gloves/hat can be stored away in the gaps to save space.

Our Lake District wild camping trips will teach you everything from the basics, and top tips and tricks for seasoned veterans alike. There is so much to cover, topics like where to camp, what to take, food and nutrition, hydration, navigation (massive subject!) weather, planning your trip, and so much more. In fact Douglas couldn’t believe how much there was to learn and how much extra knowledge he went away with.

After the trip he kindly wrote his own blog post about the trip and I guess that inspired me to start mine. Likewise, this is something I have wanted to do since starting an outdoor business way back in 2003. So a big thanks to Douglas for the article and letting me sharing it with you here:

Part 1: Here 

Part 2: Here 


I had decided to head to the remote and beautiful area of Brotherilkeld, and walk in past the river Esk to our wild camp of Great Moss. I’ve camped here many times in the past, mainly for a suitable base to climb on the impressive and towering Esk buttress. Ticking many routes over the years such as Central Buttress, Red Edge, Gargoyle’s Wall, Medusa Wall and many other classic lines.

Today though wasn’t about Rock climbing, it was to learn what to do whilst Lake District wild camping.

Our packages include a 1.5-day and for those wanting to stay out longer, then a 2.5-day package. Douglas had sensibly opted for our 1.5-day package to get use to things, and this gives a great taste of what it’s all about.

After the walk in, I usually like not to go miles and miles especially as the load is often quite heavy and for a newbie it can be a bit much. So an approximate distance of 3-5 km’s are covered before pitching the tents.


A note on tents, for all our Lake District wild camping trips, we use the trusted Terra Nova tents. A bombproof tent designed in the UK. I have used these exclusively for the past ooh 20+ years and not only have I found them to be reliable, but great customer service too.


The evening was spent cooking and chatting and taking in the beautiful surroundings. Sadly we didn’t make the summit of Scafell (A much less frequented and more interesting mountain than it’s neighbour Scafell Pike) but the hike up and back down meant we got some bonus ‘higher’ views.

And then…

The night was a still one although chilly. Douglas had opted for a slightly thicker sleeping bag, whereas I packed my ultra light mountain bag. Pros and cons with this. Lightweight and great pack size, but I need to wear clothes whilst sleeping in it.

Morning came and we were awake early, a cup of tea for me and coffee for Douglas was needed to get the day going.

After a leisurely pack down, and some meditation we slowly walked out back down to the valley floor.


Any trip is possible, and our trips don’t just cover Lake District wild camping. We run trips in Wales, and Scotland too. Get in touch for more information and to have a chat.

Our Wild Camping page: Here

Terra Nova: Here 

August 2021

outdoor activities lake district and training

family days

August 2021

Family Days Out

August is generally one of the busiest months especially with families. But it also attracts thrill seekers looking to achieve some of their long-term goals. family days out

So It’s normally about now that I head up to the highlands of Scotland to climb the classic Old Man of Stoer. This year was no exception and I climbed this iconic sea stack 4 times with different clients. We also made another 2 ascents using our freelance staff again with different clients.

I never get bored of this, and each trip is different. This time I went a day ahead and rigged the Tyrolean traverse so it made things quicker. This stayed up for almost a week as with good planning and the clients booked near each other I was able to do this.

Climbing the OMOS

The first ascent was not looking good, as the weather had been damp the night before, but as we sat on the landward side ready to cross the Tyrolean, I could see that the 5a traverse pitch was soaked. This isn’t good as it’s slopey and requires a bit of grip to get across. Martha was unsure if the day would go ahead and I told her to have faith as it would dry and all would be good. We had an early lunch and sat it out for an hour or so. This also meant that the tide was receding and so we were able to nip round the back and do the easier approach start.

Can I have a go?

If anybody is reading this and fancies climbing the old man of Stoer.  Here’s a few pointers. It doesn’t come under our ‘family days’ umbrella and there are one or two things that we ask for before setting sail.

It is possible with limited experience, although it is preferable to be able to climb up to and have seconded VS 4C as a minimum. The crack pitch (pitch 2) is 5a and quite thuggy. That said some clients rest on the rope on this whilst contemplating the moves.

An understanding of rope work is also good although not essential, but belaying and experience of is… As you will be required to hold the ropes and belay the instructor up the old man of stoer, which is the most important job in a climbing partnership.

For more information on this excellent adventure click here 

What else? family days out

Lot’s of family days out doing cool things, and making trips to suit their location, needs and group size. This mainly consists of doing 2 activities in one day. For example a half-day Rock climb with some Canoeing, or some Scrambling with an Abseil. See here for more details – Here

I did manage to get a day off here and there, and headed up to the remote and seldom frequented Heron Crag. The plan was to go up hang out, and climb on my own using a rope and some mechanical devices to keep me safe. Sadly the belay at the top to anchor my ropes doesn’t exist except for a worrying ‘drop in’ from the top so I had to re think. Luckily there were 2 other climbers there who offered to give me a top rope/second and so I jumped at the chance!

Experience family days out

These guys had done lots of climbing throughout their lives and, Neil still is but had been a hard climber. Now older it was great to watch his technique as he hung in and worked out the moves whilst not getting flustered or phased by the hard move’s above him still to come. Remember a well-racked climber should always remain calm in a crisis. Ha, many times I’ve been ‘in a crisis’ and still a little concerned! His wife Claire was as smooth as he was and it was a pleasure to be out sharing the day with these guys. We climbed up to E3 and after exhausting the ‘drop in’ belay we called it a day.


Sea Stack formation: Here

The old man of stoer: Here

wow what a beauty

July 2021

outdoor activities lake district and training

July 2021

Mostly Church Beck…

Well July has just sped past. We’ve had many requests for the classic Church Beck, of which I have been down at least 7 times this month, and have had our team of instructors cover the rest. I’m amazed but then again I guess it’s kind of the way things go. That so many people know about Church Beck who have never even been to the Lake District. I think word has spread and now people Google Ghyll scrambling, or gorge walking etc. We predominantly Canyon – top to bottom – this Ghyll, a combination of access rights and I believe it’s far more exciting to do it in this way.

Apologies for the blurry picture. I have drowned my Iphone 6 in this very Canyon before today…Gutted! Taking action shots and multi tasking is tricky! And the old Panasonic camera is pretty naff which is really in need of an upgrade.

Variety is the key

As well as Church Beck, I try and break things up and where I can steer people into different Ghyll’s and canyons, ones that don’t often get used or have been neglected over recent years. This doesn’t mean that there any less exciting it means that it hopefully gives the others a chance to ‘breath’

A fine example of this Ghyll/canyon abuse is the Esk over on the Western Lakes. I have stopped using this now and I know the outdoor centre in Eskdale has stopped as well.

Our Wild Camping expeditions are proving a hit, as well as useful for people. Kicked off early in the season with one, and on the way day in the afternoon I must have counted 50+ people on the way up to hang out at the pools.

I remember only 5/6 years ago you would be lucky to catch a handful of people finding their way up here. Social media, word of mouth and companies promoting this has all led to over crowding and over use. Now you could say, well I am to blame, and this may be the case, but the famous Ghyll’s and canyons are now known, where ever possible the less frequented ones are not advertised on our website, nor are they directly mentioned on social media platforms and we try and not give the game away. So far so good and one particular canyon we use (not telling 😉 is awesome and I rarely see folk there which is a lovely refreshing change as it gives clients a sense of pioneering and freedom.


For more information on Ghyll’s, Gorges, and Canyons call us to discuss either Church Beck or one of our locations, we will be happy to give advice even if we do not take the booking.

Ghyll, Gorge & Canyon walking: Here 

As well as Canyoning July actually has been one of the best months we’ve had in terms of clients. A combination of Covid and people wanting to get back out there, as well as more people taking holidays in the UK. Keep it up!

Friend and regular client Deepan has been on the scene and we’ve had a blast! Thanks mate for your valued support, friendship and adventures over the years.

Deeps (AKA Deepan) took a family holiday down to Pembrokshire and it would have been rude not too but he incorpriated some climbing whilst down there. We headed for the beautiful St. Davids and climbed on the sea cliffs. Picture below of the man himself busting the moves out and looking confident on the fantastic Aries a VS 4c. The traverse into it is probably the crux of it (picture of me at the end of this)  The only thing was, and Deeps also admitted it was too hot! The rock was baking and almost too hot to hold! I had to bail for half an hour and throw myself into the sea, I’m sure I fizzed as I hit the water!!

We had a blast, climbed lot’s ate some great seafood and got hot! church beck


North Wales


After the few days in Pembroke, Deeps had arranged for a few folk from his work to meet up and do some Scrambling. We did the uber classic Bristly Ridge a grade II/III which is very exciting all the way and great for a beginner, or seasoned scrambler for that matter. Picture of gang descending the bad step to the col.

It was a big day mainly because as new comers to the mountains they were understandably slower, and I had made the call to go the long way round for the descent as Deeps will tell you, the scree gully is not really fun, especially for beginners. We have done it a few times together now and although I generally would rope the unsteady down this, it’s still easy to twist an ankle or take a slide down.

I’m glad we did go the long way round, as we passed the Mountain Rescue Team on the way up as someone had sadly slipped and needed rescuing. Unluckily/but luckily the outcome was a twisted ankle. church beck


The next day was spent lower level and we got the group Rock Climbing. Several climbs were rigged and the group got amongst it. I felt very proud when Deeps climbed a tricky 5b route and stuck with it until the end. 5b is a tough grade, many experienced climbers reach this grade with many years of practice, and to be honest as a leading point of view this would be there top grade to lead climb. I could tell he was buzzing after this and it’s times like this that if I could bottle and open on a ‘down day’ then this is what I would do. Well done fella. Hand clap, hand clap!


So these have definitely been the highlights of July, great clients, good weather, good food, and most of all great mountains. We are blessed with some of the best in the world, for such a small isle we pack a mighty punch. I have climbed around the globe but always relish in mountaineering here.

Again, ass ever a big thanks to Pacerpoles for their use and support over the years. Check there fantastic poles out here. In a word, they are the best – I’ll be reviewing and adding an article on these over the coming blogs.

church beck

outdoor activities lake district and trainingJuly 2021
19th August 2021

July 2021

July 2021 Mostly Church Beck… Well July has just sped past. We’ve had many requests for the classic Church Beck, of which I have been down at least 7 times…
outdoor activities lake district and trainingUncategorised
20th August 2021

August 2021

family days August 2021 Family Days Out August is generally one of the busiest months especially with families. But it also attracts thrill seekers looking to achieve some of their…
outdoor activities lake district and trainingApril 2021
26th August 2021

April 2021

lake district wild camping family days April 2021 So April saw a few Lake District wild camping adventures! Douglas wanted to go out into the wilderness and hone and learn the…
outdoor activities lake district and trainingUncategorised
28th October 2021

May 2021

May 2021 Mostly Scrambling & Mountaineering... Firstly May historically for me has always been a month when I get away and play in the hills. Not for all the month,…