Sunday, July 18, 2010

The Lake District, York Round Two, and Last Days in Durham

A 3 day trip over to the Lake District started with a coast-to-coast drive in Josh's Nissan Micra. We had to give it some verbal encouragement to get over the fairly mild hills along the way. Even though the wheelbase is shorter than the modern Mini, there was still room for 5.

We had a leisurely hike that afternoon up to Loughrigg Fell overlooking Grasmere (pictured below) and Windemere (in the opposite direction, behind the group). There were a few fighter jets flying north through this area from an RAF base to the south. Because it is such a quiet part of the country, you could hear them from around 10 miles away once they had passed.
The group at the top of Loughrigg Fell, Windemere in the background:
Josh at the top of Loughrigg Fell:
The next day, we trekked up to the highest point in England, Scafell Point. It's not very high - just higher than the tallest point in St. Lucia and Mauritania - but it still made for a full day's hike. Some participate in what's called the '3 Peaks Challenge', climbing the highest points in Scotland, Wales, and England within 24 hours.

The first valley to climb on the way to the peak:
The fog visible in this photo would dissapate, allowing for better views at the rocky summit:

A panorama from the summit:

I arranged a quick trip to see Adam Holt down in York. I had visited earlier in the year, but only for an afternoon. We walked around the city checking out a few parks and sections of town I hadn't visited. I hadn't realized how large York was until this second time around. The weather was considerably nicer, too. Blue skies made a nice setting for a picnic in the park. It was a nice slice of English city life before a return to California.

On the city wall, looking across the bridge to the Minster:
Adam and his American girlfriend, Brianna:

I had one more night in Durham when I got back from York, so it was time to 'say my goodbyes' as the English put it. We had one last night out starting with Grey Bar, onto Jimmy Allen's and Loveshack in the city. With my bags packed the next afternoon, it was off to Edinburgh to catch a flight back to warm and sunny California after 9 months.

The 'Last Supper' (whether this one was 'supper', 'dinner', or 'tea', I'll never know):

Some parting shots from around town in Durham - St. Oswald's Church, the Palace Green, the Cloisters, and the Cathedral as seen from the train station

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