This month, one well-travelled member of our team took on the challenge of climbing Scafell Pike for the first time while on her UK summer staycation in the Lake District. Read on to find out more about Ali's experience climbing Scafell and the other fun things she and her friend got up to on their trip.
My friend Trina and I met seven years ago when she moved into my apartment building in Southern Thailand. Back in the UK, our homes are about seven hours apart, so over the years we have made the most of opportunities to meet up all over the world; Australia, India and Colombia to name a few highlights!
With the pandemic still in full force, and the third member of our travelling trio stuck in Australia, we decided that summer 2021 would be the time for a Great British Staycation! So, with our anoraks and hiking boots packed, we headed for the lake district.
In true British fashion, in the week running up to our trip the weather forecast showed thunderstorms every day. We had planned to climb Scafell Pike on day one, and it wasn’t until we woke up bright and (far too) early that the weather forecast had cleared and we had confirmation we were good to go.
After a hearty pub breakfast we were off, and thankfully the skies stayed clear, giving us some stunning views across the lakes.
The route had a pretty relentless incline and a few challenging patches, but we made it to the summit in just over two hours for a rest and some jaffa cakes, and did our best to look like we weren’t about to be blown away!
We did the whole route in about four and a half hours, and the first drops of rain started to fall at the exact moment we made it back into the warmth of the car! The rain unfortunately continued into day two, but with our plans pre-booked we popped on our anoraks and headed over to Lake Windermere for a morning kayak, where we discovered that we entirely lack coordination when it comes to paddling!
After a lap of the lake, which left us soaked to the skin, we swapped the kayak for bikes, hopped onto the ferry and headed over to the opposite shore to cycle down to Wray Castle. The route provided plenty of tree cover which we were grateful for, and after the first mile or so we fully embraced the muddy puddles en route!
Never ones to miss out on an adventure, we finished the eight mile route and made it back to the ferry dock just in time to find that due to a mechanical fault the ferry wouldn’t be running for the majority of the next week! Thankfully the team at Windermere Canoe and Kayak, who we had rented the bikes from, were on hand to send over a rescue rig which just about fit the pair of us and our bikes in for the journey back to some well earned fish and chips.
On the final day of our trip, with the rain still pouring and bodies aching, we opted to stay in and make the most of the hotel’s pool and spa, as well as doing what Piglets do best! Although staycations aren’t our normal kind of adventure, we loved exploring more of the UK and made it home feeling happy and refreshed, and with a few less mosquito bites than we’re used to!
By Ali Flower