After September’s drowning on Castle Crag anyone would be forgiven for thinking October was going to see more of the same. The SMASH crew prepped with wet weather gear set on sealing themselves from the slightest signs of moisture. The sun spat a solar flare at England on Tuesday just in time for SMASH to return to the Lake District. This time they aim for a little more altitude and distance. Keswick’s favourite and most accessible Wainwright Latrigg is one of the lowest fells in the district and has long been a popular people’s peak due to its beautiful views down the valley of Borrowdale from the summit. It’s the least mountainous of the Skiddaw fells and is almost devoid of rock. SMASH set off from the old railway station and in no time were on the trail headed skyward into the woods flanking Latrigg. It was fairly arduous along Spooney Green Lane which served up some nice views early on towards Bassenthwaite Lake. SMASH pressed on up, snapping camera shots of the massive Skiddaw range which was now beginning to glow from the morning sunshine and along with it the growing SMASH team which had some small people to show them the way. One walker commented as he passed “you’ve brought half of Keswick with you.” No just some reprobates from the dream factory and a couple of ankle bitters incase we get peckish. We swung around the back heading north via Mallen Dodd with the sense of summit. Latrigg has an unremarkable summit prompting a premature peak smashing celebration at the memorial bench. Just a little further east saw us all safely sprawled out in sheep pasture that is Latrigg at 368m, 1203ft overlooking Keswick.
Number 206 on Wainwright’s list he was moved to describe the view from Latrigg “a panorama of crowded detail, all of it of great beauty: indeed this scene is one of the gems of the district…The far horizon is a jumbled upheaval of peaks, with many dear old friends standing up proudly.” We all sat for a while soaking in the fine view and picking out the peaks while scoffing sarnies and throwing sheep droppings at the small people. We huddled for the group photo (see above) all looking quite chuffed we had bagged another peak in the name of just getting out with some good company in beautiful surroundings.
We set off down the ridge toward Brundholme Wood which looked a lot like Mario land, there were all manner of different mushrooms everywhere. We followed the river and the old railway stopping occasionally to bunch up or cool down at the waters edge. The scene was one of a balmy autumn day, hard to believe it was October. By the time we arrived back in Keswick we had all walked over 6 miles. We needed a well earned cuppa and a slice of cake so we dumped our gear in the cars, changed clothes and headed into Keswick to search out the Temporary Measure with it’s disturbing blend of haberdashery, photographic canvases and stories, commissions, cards, accessories and a lovely cup of tea… SMASHing!