Monday 9 July 2012

More ghyll scrambling sessions in The Lake District. June/July 2012

The latter part of June and beginning of July has seen Iain from Kendal Mountaineering services fairly busy running ghyll scrambling sessions.

In many respects this has been just as well as it has been so wet, many of our dry weather activities such as rock climbing or scrambling would have been difficult - if not impossible in the prevailing conditions.

Photos one & two were taken by Iain during a day in Stickle Ghyll in Great Langdale when he was one of three instructors working for another provider taking these young people from a Walsall based primary School on ghyll scrambling sessions.

These photos were taken on Tuesday June 26th on a relatively dry day when water levels in Stickle Ghyll were low and the weather warm making it ideal for ghyll scrambling sessions with these young people.

Ghyll scrambling or gorge walking as this activity is also known is all about climbing through a mountain stream - swimming through pools, climbing up waterfalls and working as a team to achieve success.

There are a few sections on Stickle Ghyll where use of a rope is necessary to prevent a slip turning into something more serious and in photo two one young chap climbs a cascade whilst secured to  Iain via a rope. All of the children thoroughly enjoyed their ghyll scrambling sessions with us.

Iain again worked with the same young people on Thursday 28th June except this time he was kayaking on Lake Windermere from Fellfoot. Towards the end of the morning session, a violent thunderstorm started combined with a cloudburst which meant a later start for the afternoon group. The incredibly heavy rain also led to problems for Iain getting home later that day - causing serious flooding problems in South Lakeland and in Kendal town centre.

We were concerned that the heavy rain would have implications for our corporate ghyll scrambling session due to take place the following morning although we ran that with success as you'll see if you follow the link.

Photos three & four are taken from two evening sessions Iain was asked to run by the same provider back in Stickle Ghyll again during Tuesday & Wednesday the following week.

These young people from Bungay High School in Suffolk were on a geography field studies trip to learn about Glaciation and hydrology/erosion etc and the group on the
second evening had first hand experience of the power & action
of a mountain stream approaching flood levels.

The two photos here were taken on the Tuesday evening. Wednesday evening was so wet & dark due to the cloud that Iain didn't bother taking the camera along.

Checking water levels on the wednesday left us to conclude that Stickle ghyll was a goer - just! However, minutes after our assessment had taken place we had another cloudburst which lasted half and hour. By the time we got the group into Stickle Ghyll for their ghyll scrambling session, water levels were rising!

What followed was an interesting session in which Iain & his assistant had to improvise - using other sections of the ghyll and avoiding other sections that we would normally use. The students were given the opportunity to experience the power of fast flowing water and had to work together to make progress. It was certainly a full on experience but everyone still had a great time and were kept - most importantly of all - safe. Photos from the Bungay High School sessions and those with the previous weeks primary groups can all be viewed here.

If you would like to book your own ghyll scrambling session in The Lake District with Kendal Mountaineering Services contact us here. Our experienced staff team are adept at being able to improvise and yet still provide you with a worthwhile & value for money ghyll scrambling session no matter how wet the weather; and remember - ghyll scrambling & canyoning are great activities that you can still do when it is too wet in The Lake District to do anything else! We hope you'll join us on a session soon.

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