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Good Friday | The Old Man of Coniston

Back in the Lake District


Coniston

With the forecast for Easter bank holiday weekend looking like a corker, I knew that I had to get back out in the Lake District mountains for a hike and a potential swim. So with my Dad, brother Alex and his girlfriend El all off work, we decided to head over to Coniston and attempt The Old Man of Coniston. I've actually done the Old Man years ago, which was one of my first blog posts I ever shared. You can find that here if you want to read a very brief post, with very poor imagery! It was a slightly different route to the one we did yesterday but this route was definitely more scenic and the perfect amount of time to be up and down by lunch time. I'd thoroughly recommend it for anyone wanting to get in to hiking, it's an easy route with only a little scrambling over some big rocks but on a nice day the views are stunning. Once you've reached Low Water, it's an ideal spot for a picnic and perhaps a swim if you're feeling brave enough. I'd recommend taking a swimming costume and a towel, even if you aren't sure you'll go in.. at least you have the option to! I'd also suggest taking a rather substantial lunch if you plan on swimming too. I was ravenous when I got out and ate my sandwich, crisps, a flask of soup, a biscuit and a yoghurt and really could have stomached something else!

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With a 6am alarm set, I was out the door by 6:30am with my banana, cherry and oat smoothie, topped with Granola, ready for a morning in the hills with my Dad, brother Alex and his girlfriend El. We parked at Walna Scar car park, which I totally forgot existed until El reminded us. It looks like you are heading off road when you get to the single road track to the car park but keep going, it is there and it will save your legs walking up that hill! There is a ticket machine to pay for parking but it wasn't working when we got there, so we all managed to bag free parking for the day.

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From the car park we headed towards Brown Pike, which was the first trig point we reached. It was a good hike up although strenuous but we haven't done any walking in so long that it felt tough to begin with. From here you can spot your first tarn, Blind Tarn. 

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From Brown Pike the next trig point you'll reach is Buck Pike and a view of Goats Water which is much bigger than Blind Tarn.

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I'm pretty certain, that the mountains in the background are Scafell, Scafell Pike and Great End but I should really research that so don't take my word for it!

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The next climb is to Dow Crag. This is a fairly gradual climb from Buck Pike and there is a bit where you need to scramble over some large rocks, which is fun when it's warm and sunny but perhaps not so fun in the wet and cold... so be prepared!

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... and then, after walking for a little while longer you'll reach The Old Man with an amazing view of Low Water and the zig zag path leading all the way down.

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Bit annoyed at my choice in leggings because they really don't go well with my orange Arcteryx bag but all my black leggings were in the wash. I really need to invest in a couple more pairs for this Spring/Summer!

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Braved it and quickly slipped in to my swimming costume to go for a swim. It was cold... in fact it was bloody freezing so it took me a while to get fully in but I am so glad I did. Erik on the other hand just watched from the shore.

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After a spot of lunch we headed back down but even though it was sunny and not a cloud in the sky, I had put my thermal top on and my Patagonia down jacket on. It took me ages to warm back up after stopping and having been in the water but half way back down I was stripping off again.

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Almost at the car park, it was a great view looking back towards the hills. It was super busy on our way down, so I'm glad we got up and down when we did. 

I really hope you've enjoyed this post. I would like to share more in depth posts on where we go and the routes we take etc. and I hope to get out hiking and camping much more this Summer. If there's anywhere you'd like to see in particular in or around the Lakes or the Yorkshire Dales that you haven't managed to get to or can't get to at the moment, please let me know and I'll do my best to plan a hike or camping trip. Speak soon and enjoy this glorious bank holiday weekend! Lots of love, L.

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