We could have easily stayed inside on this particular Sunday afternoon - the older boys especially had no motivation to get outside....and I had the usual piles of laundry to sort.......But just as we were about to light the fire and turn on Netflix the clouds started to clear, and after 24 hours of heavy rain the mountain peaks were just becoming visible through the murk.
Articles in Category: Mountain High
James has always been a good walker. Since he took his first steps at 10 and a half months, he’s not stopped and he’s been on the go ever since. Even when he was little he rarely asked for carries and would happily plod along on our daily dog walks. Ever since we moved to Scotland he’s been desperate to get out into the mountains, “proper ones, with their tops in the clouds”. So far, all our walks in the hill have failed to convince him and he was still left longing to head up a mountain. The boy was ready for his first Munro.
The third day in the Peak District brought some cloud and strong wind. We would need somewhere sheltered and ideally – as we would have to pack-up by mid-afternoon for the drive home – somewhere quick to get to.
What do you do when you find yourself with a sudden free weekend before the new school term starts? Climb a mountain of course!
I love small hills. Before we had children, I could never have imagined writing anything like that and genuinely meaning it.
The view of Stanage Edge is surely one of the iconic images of British climbing. Not for nothing is she known as the Queen of Grit. James tells me that he vividly remembers his first glimpse of Stanage. I vividly recall his reaction: as we approached from Hathersage and the Edge reared up out of the landscape, like the ramparts of a great castle, James’s jaw dropped. He spoke in soft, reverent tones: “Wow. Just wow. Are we going to climb there, Mummy?”
We could easily have gone back to Froggatt Edge for the second day of our trip to the Peak District but, since variety is the spice of life, we decided to take the boys to experience another crag.
We climbed a giant! Rising out of the plains of Hastings is Te Mata Peak, a glorious park with heaps of walking trails, forests, views and legends.
Chloe came home from playgroup with this piece of art many moons ago and it’s become a kind of mantra we try (and often fail) to stick to in the busyness of life. It was particularly hard to stick to last Thursday when it ended up being nearly one o’clock before we embarked on our much anticipated “Christmas holiday mountain adventure day”.
When, a few years ago, we discovered Brean Down, we noticed another ‘interesting-looking’ promontory called Sand Point. Brean lies to the south of Weston-Super-Mare, while Sand Point lies to the north of it, near Kewstoke. The forecast for the New Year’s Day Bank Holiday was good, and Sand Point had the attraction of being a slightly shorter drive than Brean Down, so it was the perfect moment for a visit.
Since Easter, when James experienced real rock for the first time, he’s been desperate to go ‘proper’ climbing again. Given where we live, this can only really be achieved by making a weekend of it, which provided a great excuse to spend the May Bank Holiday weekend in the Peak District and catch-up with some friends who also climb.
In early March, we were really excited when we had the opportunity to spend a weekend in our old stomping ground of North Yorkshire. The big dilemma was to decide which of our many favourite haunts we would visit – there were so many great places that we knew it would be a hard choice.