During Enrichment Week last year, our students had the chance to spend three days in the Yorkshire Dales and the Lake District, developing their mountaineering skills with the support of our intrepid staff.
On Monday 1 July, plans to climb Twistleton Scar were thwarted by rain. So instead, a visit to Ingleton climbing wall was arranged. There, students were introduced to climbing with rope, and without (this is known as bouldering).
At the end of this training session, the group travelled to the Lake District to stay at a mountaineering hut in Patterdale belonging to the FRCC (Fell and Rock Climbing Club of the English Lake District). The warden of the hut bent over backwards to accommodate our students. That evening, the students cooked dinner, which was followed by a stroll in the sunshine.
On Tuesday 2 July, the group travelled from Patterdale to the end of the Borrowdale valley, from which they started their ascent towards the summit of Scafell Pike (the highest mountain in England). The weather was good without being too warm. Everyone reached the summit, some needing more encouragement than others! A great sense of achievement was felt by all.
On the way back to the hut, they visited Keswick for a well-deserved dinner, then stopped by Aira Force to enjoy some of the beautiful scenery that the Lake District has to offer.
On Wednesday 3 July, after an enormous breakfast, the students cleaned the hut in order to leave it as they found it. As the weather was glorious, the group decided to stop at the Cumbrian village of Hutton Roof, above which a small crag offers plenty of opportunities for climbing. In addition, Hutton Roof Crags has some of the best areas of limestone pavement in Britain, with a wealth of unusual plants and animals. After a full day of climbing and sunbathing in the warm sunshine, everyone headed back to Notre Dame.
This trip enabled our students to enjoy the Yorkshire Dales and Lake District, but they are also using the experience to work towards an award with the John Muir Trust, which is ‘a conservation charity dedicated to the experience, protection and repair of wild places.’ You can find out more about the John Muir Award here and here.
Thank you to staff members Tony Ryland, Anne Chevalier, Tom Humphreys and Ollie Horton for organising and supervising the trip.