Sunday, 14 December 2014

North York Moors 'Mini' Wild Camp 12/12/14

I decided not to blog about this trip as it was just a case of trekking out into the middle of nowhere and taking a few night sky shots, had I covered more distance or been out there for a couple of nights I definitely would have added more.
Enjoy the shots :)

Tripsdale Beck.

Looking down over Kay Nest.

Wild Country Sololite under the stars.

The morning after a bitterly cold night.

All packed up and ready to depart.

One of the cabins overlooking the moor.

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Kinder Scout Wild Camp 7/12/14

On the drive there I was wondering how much snow there would be and how good Kinder Reservoir would look with a snowy backdrop, I was like a child on Christmas morning looking forward to my first snowy Wildcamp!

I arrived at 12 o' clock to absolutely no snow at all, I was gutted and cursed myself for taking the forecast as gospel, nevertheless I set off up Kinder Road towards the reservoir.

Just before I crossed over the River Kinder it started to rain, I quickly packed my camera and lenses into dry bags and donned my waterproof overtrousers.
The rain quickly turned into hail and I plodded up the cobbled path beside the reservoir.

A storm crossing behind Kinder Reservoir.
The downpour quickly subsided but I could see another storm hitting Kinder in the distance as I skirted the familiar path overlooking the reservoir.

The lack of snow showed some fantastic pastel shades of the surrounding vegetation, every cloud and all that..!

Looking up to Sandy Heys.
After rounding the reservoir I crossed over the footbridge and meandered towards Blackshaws, the sun was now out and bathed the surrounding areas in a warming light.

Looking over to Leygatehead Moor.
I struggled on up Broad Clough while a fell runner cheerily passed me and disappeared into the distance.
My energy levels were dropping so I munched on a couple of fig bars without any pause of my slow progress.
As I rejoined the main path heading South the gradient relaxed and I could see storms battering hills over to the West.

My easy walking was short lived as I approached Kinderlow End and I passed a few cheery folk on my way up.

The path up Kinderlow End.
As I turned around to check back I got a shock, I could see an icy storm heading straight for me, I kept snapping away as long as I dare and quickly dry bagged the camera once again.

An icy storm heading straight towards me!
The storm didn't last long but it was a promising sign that I may get some snow after all.
As I neared the top of Kinderlow End the sun broke through the clouds creating some fantastic effects.

As I neared Edale Rocks I began looking for a potential pitching spot and I couldn't help but notice Swines Back looked a better prospect, as I looked over I saw a tripod set up on the summit and hoped I hadn't been beaten to it.
I took a slow walk over and noticed someone leaving the summit, as our paths crossed he introduced himself as Harsharn from Peak-Exposure and after a brief chat about photography, weather, camping and suchlike, he headed for Noe Stool.
Despite the tiny elevation increase from the Pennine Way path, the winds up on Swines Back were borderline ridiculous, I sought shelter behind some rocks and made myself a nice warming brew.
After a passing storm I checked out the area and although the tent would have endured such winds, there's no way I'd be able to sleep.

A quick brew out of the chilling wind.
I quickly descended and found a place to pitch that would hopefully provide decent sunrise views in the morning.
After two evening meals and faffing about checking social media I peered out to a surprisingly clear sky, I switched the lens to my night time fave (22mm prime) and headed out.

Force 10 Ion 2 pitched just below Swines Back.

After 10-15 minutes I headed back indoors to thaw out, soon after it was lights out and as I lay awake, couldn't help but notice the frequency of the sleet was starting to increase.
I woke up a couple of times to heavy snowfall and gave the tent a gentle shake to disperse any that had built up on the roof.
I peered out when my alarm had gone off, unfortunately the sunrise wasn't visible but a heavy dumping of snow had fallen so I hastily had breakfast and then darted outside in the snow taking some shots while the weather still allowed it.

Just as forecast!
Looking Northeast to Noe Stool.
Time was getting on so I packed my sodden tent away and headed West at the Jacob's Ladder crossroads.

The views of surrounding peaks were fantastic and as I made my descent skirting around Kinderlow End the sleet began to fall again.

As I was crossing one of the many stiles on my route back down my lead leg slipped and I fell onto the top plank, I felt lucky that I got away with a nasty graze at the top of my inner thigh as it could have been much worse!
The sleet began to increase and the waterproof overtrousers went on again as I feared it would soon start to fall as rain.

Kinderlow End from the South.
At around 300m the greens had returned and as I strolled the last kilometer back to the car the heavens well and truly opened!

The Path down to Tunstead Clough Farm.

As I neared the car (almost exactly 24 hours later) I'd seen far more than just snow and it had been a great trip to end my two month drought of no camping, I look forward to many more over the winter months :)