Wednesday 22 September 2010

Ghyll scrambling & canyoning courses in the Lake District. Church Beck, Coniston. September 8th 2010.

Beth & Gavin booked a half day ghyll scrambling session for themselves as part of their week's holiday with parents staying in the Lake District. Having recently had a new addition to the family - this was their first bit of time for just the two of them together for quite a while!

As they were staying in the southern lake District, Iain suggested they meet at Coniston for their ghyll scrambling & canyoning session and the pair had a great time in the ghyll on what was a warm sunny day. Being mid-week, for a change, we saw no-one else in the ghyll. The first pictures is taken close to the get in on the upstream (ghyll scrambling) ascent of Church Beck and the second shot is of Gavin just emerging from a wet duck under a log is about halfway up the ghyll - this is an exciting & refreshing challenge although not everyone wants to do it!

The third shot shows Beth about to be lowered down Miner's Bridge waterfall - the second lower of our canyoning descent of the ghyll. This was easier than the first lower which was very slippery owing to the slime which had accumulated on the slab above the fall - due to the warm sunny weather we had been having!

The final shot shows Gavin - about to slide off the chockstone at the final waterfall on the descent of the Church Beck canyoning element of the session. This fall is actually known as the chockstone pitch as the massive rock is wedged in the narrow bed of the ravine.
Gav had to go first - just to show Beth it could be done, but despite being a little nervous she soon followed suit and did extremely well.
We are busy at the moment - the bookings just keep coming in for half day ghyll scrambling & canyoning sessions in the Lake District. Iain has another two booked between now & the end of September not to mention, a caving group this Saturday and a multi-activity on Friday for 8 who are abseiling and canoeing & kayaking here with us in the Lake District.
We also have a climbing course booked for October and an all day Canadian canoe river journey for three to be done on one of the Lake District's rivers. No doubt more will follow - Iain is getting a little concerned as to whether or not he'll have time to write it all up!
We have done a lot of ghyll scrambling & canyoning half day sessions in Church Beck this year but it's worth remembering wherever you are staying in the Lakes - there is a ghyll near you that we can use whether it be the Ullswater valley, the Keswick area or Thirlmere - or even the west coast! Contact us and we'll do our best to accommodate your requirements and check out our website for up and coming courses. There is always lots on offer with Kendal Mountaineering Services.
The next write up to follow is about Iain's recent trip to the Isle of Skye where he has just run another Cuillin Ridge traverse. Watch out for the report on the blog!

Sunday 5 September 2010

Ghyll scrambling & canyoning in the Lake District. Church Beck, Coniston, September 2nd 2010

Robert smith brought his two sons Chris & Blane together with their Nephew Johnny over from Durham specially to come ghyll scrambling with Kendal Mountaineering services here in the Lake District in what has appeared to be the start of an Indian Summer. In fact, the weather couldn't have been better for the session - as we had a warm sunny day throughout and no-one in the gill apart from us.

The first two shots show the family in the ghyll just above the get in and enjoying a swim in the pool below the waterfall marking the start of the narrow section of gorge which contains the three jumps.

Although it was quiet in the ghyll when we arrived, it was such a fine sunny day Iain was sure that another party would turn up to do a ghyll scrambling session and as things have now changed at the 1st of the three jumps, Iain decided to head up to Miners bridge - but instead of starting at the very head of the ghyll & doing the two lowers encountered in the descent before doing the jumps Iain decided to do the big lower below Miner's Bridge first followed by the three jumps - then come back out and go to the head of the ghyll and do the final bit from the dam down to Miner's bridge & then get out.

The third shot shows Johnny traversing out to Iain before being lowered to just above the first pool. This is the top jump and there is a fall of 15 feet just to the left of Blane who looks on.

This is the place where Iain always lowers his clients while others jump straight from the rock where Blane is sitting - into the narrow slot below. Iain has never liked the idea of jumping here as people can hit the narrow sides of the slot below - however recently, someone doing the jump broke their ankle in the pool below. As undoubtedly others will now decide no longer to jump here this place will become a real bottleneck as people are roped down instead and this was why Iain wanted to get here as soon as possible. Imagine if we had had to queue behind a group of 20 to get down here!

Anyway after doing the Miner's Bridge fall and the jumps, we went up to the top of the ghyll to finish off with the descent and lower on the way down to miners bridge; and in the final photo the family enjoy cooling off in the pool just above our final lower.

Everyone thoroughly enjoyed their Lake District ghyll scrambling & canyoning session with Iain from Kendal Mountaineering services. We have lots of availability for ghyll scrambling & canyoning sessions at the moment so take time to book and enjoy your session with us before the chill of winter sets in.

See you soon!