Wainwright walks 79: Boiled on Beda!

  • Hills: Beda Fell
  • Classification: Wainwright (150! Yay!!)
  • When: Monday 31 May
  • Who: Me and the mountaineering minion
  • Distance: About 4 miles
  • Time: 2 1/2 hours
  • Weather: Scorchio. Actually too hot for serious walking really.
  • Post walk drink: Pinot Grigio (far too hot for Malbec!)
  • Post walk watering hole: The Kings Head, Carlisle
  • Uses of the arse crampon: Thought I might need it on this one but turned out I didn’t
  • Mishaps: Insomnia, sunburn, general level of knackeredness

For some reason, it’s taken a long time for this post to crawl out of my subconscious and make it to my blog. I’m not really sure why that is, but suspect it is a combination of factors; firstly an ongoing period of being stupidly busy at work, secondly life in general just seeming to take over and finally a bit of stress creeping in too.

To explain that last point first. I never started out climbing Wainwrights with any intention of doing the lot. When I did my first few I was still actively bagging Munros and doing the odd Wainwright was a nice diversion from that – with the added benefit that it is easier to pick a Wainwright for a marginal day than a Munro because the vast majority of them are so much smaller and I’m not a fan of going out in bad weather (the phrase ‘there is no such thing as bad weather, just inadequate clothing’ being one that drives me up the wall, there being no clothing known to man that will stop you getting blown off the hill in strong winds, lead lined boots maybe aside). However over the last few years, particularly since I stopped spending so much time in Scotland, the numbers have started to creep up and I’ve started to wonder if I ‘should’ make a serious attempt to do the lot, particularly as the 150 has approached.

I’m really not sure about this to be honest. I’m not good at failing at things and my default reaction at not being good at something tends to be to run a mile in the opposite direction. I am also a high stress person anyway and given hill walking is one of my escapes from stress the last thing I want is to end up getting stressed about it. Realistically I know what I need to do is take the pressure off myself, just enjoy it and see what happens, not least given that there are some of the bigger hills in the West that may give me some trouble. It also hasn’t helped that lockdown hasn’t been kind to me physically – there being nothing in the way of a hill anywhere near my fitness is definitely lacking and the only thing that really keeps you fit for doing big hills is doing big hills. Anyway, for a combination of reasons, I was pretty stressed about getting my 150th under the belt.

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