Well; Friday the first of March came around; the preparations were complete and the eighth In2venture Activity Weekend at Blaithwaite House got underway. A massive thanks to the nineteen folk who turned out – it was great to meet you all, both new faces and returning friends. Great company; great activities; great food; great location – a very enjoyable weekend.
Folk gathered at Blaithwaite House from Friday afternoon and final activity choices for Saturday were made. The social dimension of the weekend got off to a good start in the evening – I retired at midnight but there was still a good gathering around the log burner.
We all met at Seathwaite, which must be one of the best Lakeland access points for all kinds of activity, and after the usual last minute of faff with kit split into groups and set off for an ascent of Sour Milk Gill.
The scrambling in Sour Milk Gill is excellent, ample challenge but with the option to step out at just about any point. We got the rope out twice to provide security on the more exposed sections – everybody reached the top of the scramble without significant incident.
At this point the group divided according to activity choices made the night before with some turning left and heading for an off-piste route on to Base Brown followed by a walk along the ridge before descending towards Taylor Force Gill & Sty Head Tarn and then returning to Seathwaite.
The remainder of the group carried on up the fell from Sour Milk Gill to tackle Seathwaite Wad Mine (as two independent smaller groups). This is a great underground trip: the abseils – a challenge to some; were enjoyed by all with the added bonus of a traverse across the Grand Pipe to finish in daylight!
Back at the Centre sweet & sour chicken with rice and apple sponge were the precursor to another enjoyable evening around the log burner in the Main House.
Activity choices were: a very wet day Gorge Walking in the River Lidd at Penton or an open canoe workshop at the same venue. The group split about 50/50. I spent the morning with the canoeists along with Ferg, whilst Alan & Graham guided the group up the gorge – it must have been really cold in the river!
The Canoeists, meanwhile, divided into two smaller groups one of which spent the morning with Ferg looking at a range of paddle skills aimed at being able to get tandem open canoes to go where you want them to on flat water. The rest were with me & we had a go at: moving water skills; forward paddling and a bit of poling!
The weekend wound up with lunch back at Blaithwaite & lots of farewells – brilliant!
Thanks to John Wood for the photography, there are a full set of his pictures on Flickr