The sun was shining and bags were packed early doors. The alarm had gone off at 5am for a 6am departure in the slim hope we'd make it up there before the sun rose but as we headed up the M6 the orangy glow was already apparent to the right of us and we knew it would be daylight when we finally got parked. Not to worry, there'd be plenty summer weekends when we could camp and be right in place for the morning glory of the sunrise.
We headed for Langdale and as we approached the layby where we'd park the sun was just coming over the peaks behind and illuminating the Crinkles beautifully. The sky and early mist was clearing and it looked like we were in for a beautiful day.
The first part of the walk would take us up the Band from Langdale up onto Bowfell via the Climbers Traverse and hopefully up the slab which was going to be an interesting challenge and put our newly learned winter skills to test. Ice axes and crampons packed we were all ready for the challenge that lay ahead and looking forward to it.
The higher we walked the more snow we found underfoot and the next challenge was finding the path that veered off the Band and took us over the traverse to the bottom of the slab. This proved more difficult than it looked as under snow there was no real indication of the path and the higher we got the more we realised that the traverse wasnt going to be an option today so we made our way up a steep and icy patch to take us over to the main path that came over from the Crinkles. Tough going and it was time to get the ice axes out and crampons on to help with the last bit.
Once up onto the path we walked back down a bit to to the top of the slab with the intentions of perhaps going down it and then back up but large cracks in the snow pack didn't make it an appealing venture at all. Infact I was dead against going anywhere near it. So we decided against it and carried on up to the summit of Bowfell.
Crampons off and packed away now as the snow was really soft and as we made our way up to Rossett Pike the views around us were spectacular. We could see quite clearly now the slab of Bowfell from below and I'm glad now we made the decision not to tackle it today.
Joining the Cumbrian Way would take us on the last stretch through the valley back to the car and it was a great time to contemplate a fantastic day. The sun was going down and the Crinkles were once again illuminated albeit this time from behind.
Beautiful Bowfell, Beautiful Walk, Beautiful Weather..........