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Littondale, 6-8 March 2015

Author: Andrew Williamson

Trip Summary

Anticipation was suitably high for CUHWC’s first visit to the ‘toy town’ (Presidential communication) that is Halton Gill. Living up to these expectations, the final weekend trip of Lent Term was a true success for the 31 hillwalkers involved (with some additional places filled by CUMC). Nestled in one of the quieter valleys of the Yorkshire Dales National Park and among some of the Yorkshire Dales’ most impressive limestone scenery, Halton Gill Bunk Barn was widely accepted to be some of the best accommodation that CUHWC has been fortunate enough to stay in. Indeed, it even boasted a sauna and (table) games room! We were blessed with dry, if cloudy, weather for the trip and the mild temperatures meant that the only snow remaining was in wall-side drifts.

Taking advantage of the bunkhouse’s proximity to the Yorkshire Three Peaks, and in particular Pen-y-Ghent, the vast majority of trip participants (even, perhaps, all of them?) visited Pen-y-Ghent on Saturday. Various permutations followed from Pen-y-Ghent: one walk included an ascent of the nearby Fountains Fell by following the Pennine Way, one combined this with an ascent of the higher Ingleborough, while others headed northwards or down into Horton-in-Ribblesdale. There was no shortage of longer routes, too, with two groups returning post-sunset, and one of these had completed the Three Peaks over their 13-hour day.

Saturday evening, though lacking any singing, was as always first class if a little delayed with the late returners (and the distraction that was the sauna!). We were treated to an impressive array of meals, even if one group was rather puzzled by their failed attempt at baking brownies.

On Sunday, our walks were shorter (with some even being dangerously like rambling), but we managed to explore the broad ridge of Horse Head Moor to the east of the bunkhouse, the quietness and splendour of the Littondale valley with its inherently impressive geology, and the area surrounding Malham Tarn. A few others drove to the nearby Wharfedale or to the epic Kilnsey Crag.

Overall, the trip was an ideal way to mark the end of term for all of those involved, with the bar set highly for our vacation trip and Easter Term outings.

Trip Participants

Thomas L (Trip Leader), Josh A (Trip Safety Officer), Ben M (Mascot), Valerie A, Tom A, Emily B, David B, Harriet C, Zekang C, Daria C, Ros C, Jamie C, James D, April G, William G, Matt H, Becky H, Andy H, Tina K, Alex K, Philipp K (with CUMC), Sam L, Alexander L (with CUMC), Adrien L, Fingal L, Juliette M, Yining N, Rose P (with CUMC), Helen P, Alex R, Toby S, Kathrin S, Lucie S, Andrew W, Philip W and Steven W.


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Near Height Laithe, Malham Moor (Andrew W)

An impressive sunset (Philip W)

On the Pennine Way near Pen-y-Ghent (Zekang C)