I was really excited. I’d seen mum packing all my food and my bed roll into her rucsac on the Thursday evening, so I knew something was planned. I couldn’t believe it though when she left me as usual on the Friday morning and went out to work! Gosh the time dragged ’till she came home at lunchtime! And then, we had to wait for Reuben and his dad to turn up and pick us up. By this point, I was so beside myself I just didn’t know what to do with my paws.
Eventually, we set off. Reuben’s dad drove us all up to somewhere in the Yorkshire Dales called ‘Wild Boar Fell’. Got something to do with pigs I think, but I didn’t see any. Saw lots of sheep though – they all need taking down a peg or two, but mum will never let me for some reason.
It was uphill right from the word go, and still quite warm too in the early evening.
We only had to go a couple of miles to the first camp. There were lots of rocky bits to pick my way through mind – it’s a good job I’m nimble on my paws.
But what a spot for camping! Tilly will be really jealous when she sees these photos – she needs taking down a peg or two as well, thinking she can take mum out backpacking and leave me at home – she would be in seventh heaven camping next to a swimming hole like this.
I had to suffer the indignation of being tied to the rucsac while mum put the tent up, but it was soon time for a relaxing Jumbone.
It was a gorgeous evening, but did cool down a little as the sun got lower. I had to keep reminding mum to get the camera out and take plenty of photos for my blog post.
The wind got up a bit during the night, but I still slept well. I just love my tent (take note Tilly, my tent, not your tent, I just let you borrow it), and mum had made me a new super-comfy bed roll for the weekend.
The sun hit the tent early the next morning, quickly heating it up. I kicked mum out of bed around 5:30am to take a photo in the shadowy light.
A lazy breakfast in bed followed, and pretty soon Reuben and his dad were also stirring, although I was a little peeved to discover that Reuben’s dad had actually carried a Thermarest up for him to sleep on.
Must put in a request for one of those……
Today’s route was a 7 mile jaunt to the top of Baugh Fell. To start with though, we went straight up to the summit of Wild Boar Fell. We visited The Nab at the northern end of the plateau, before turning and following the eastern edge southwards.
I thought these stone cairn things were a bit spooky – from a distance they looked too much like people watching you.
By now, it was starting to get a bit hot! There then followed a curving descent and then re-ascent up to the top of Swarth Fell. We had lunch here, and thank goodness mum had remembered to pack my meaty pouches – I was feeling like I needed the extra sustenance.
After our break we then went down what seemed like a really, long, steep descent to Rawthey Gill Foot. On the way, we crossed over a boggy, level bit which was covered in cotton grass as far as the eye could see. Fantastic stuff for running through!
I was beginning to melt a bit by the time we got down to the river, so it was good to have a chance to cool off.
Reuben said he was feeling a bit hot, too.
We had a good, long break before setting off on what seemed like a mega ascent in the heat – straight up to the summit of East Baugh Fell. We all needed several breaks going up here in the afternoon sun!
I’m glad I don’t have to carry those silly pannier things that Tilly and Reuben have. After all, what do I have mum for if not to carry my stuff for me?
The climb was worth it though. We topped out and found several tarns we could camp by. Tents were soon up and Jumbones were once more given out.
I rather liked that cairny thing by our spot for the night – gave it a bit of extra atmosphere.
I have to admit I was quite tired on the Saturday evening, and mum and I went to bed quite early. It was a hot night, too. The next morning, Reuben told me how he and his dad had stayed up late and gone for a wander around as it was getting dark, and he’d had to go into guarding mode due to a weird, spooky experience.
Apparently, he and his dad had been sat watching the sunset, on some rocky bits just near the tents, when he’d seen something weird approaching them! He said he gave it a good bark and a good glare and mananged to stop it in its tracks, but he says he’s never seen anything quite like it before. Apparently there used to be mines up there, so he reckons it was probably connected with them in some way. Got his adrenaline going though, whatever it was!
Sunday morning dawned warm, still and sunny. You could tell it was going to be an even hotter day. Reuben started working on his tan as soon as he’d finished his breakfast.
We had quite a long trek over the summit plateau to start with, passing by Knoutberry Haw, picking our way through bogs and tussocks.
I was glad we’d made an early start today as it was so hot. I was having to dive in every bit of stream and puddle we came across, to try and cool down. What a pleasant surprise it was then, when we suddenly came across West Baugh Fell Tarn.
(Look and be jealous, Tilly! Lots of serious swimming holes on this trip!)
An absolutely perfect spot for a paddle and a water top up.
Well, the day just got hotter and hotter after that, and we now had a long, hot descent down to the River Rawthey; once again jumping in every bit of water I could find.
But the river made a great lunch spot. I sat in the shade for my meaty pouch.
The last couple of miles back to the car were along a quiet country road – although it did seem to have a surprising amount of traffic on it from time to time.
Still lovely countryside and views, but unfortunately no shade. Hot walking, and we nearly got ambushed by some sheep! (Told you all sheep need taking down a peg or two.)
What a good weekend though. Reuben’s a cool walking companion and many thanks have to go to him and his dad for organising such an excellent route – and providing the transport! Great stuff!
Reuben’s dad has also done a good write up about our trip, so if you want to read his report – and get the low down on my secret night club life – click here!