Epic 2-day Hike and Wild Camp in the Upper Esk Valley
6 people attending
0 places left
12 people waitlisted
UPDATE (11th Sept) : The latest Covid regulations in England require us to reduce the capacity of this event from the original 8 down to 6. The two people who are directly impacted by this have been personally notified. This is the first of a number of wild camping weekends Bryan and/or Jon plan to run in the Lake District, so we'll be doing our best to get everyone who wants to get out into the hills onto one of them as they are published. We are sorry for the inconvenience this has caused but clearly we all need to stick to the rules and to stay safe.
Though Scafell Pike is crowded, most people ascending to the roof of England will do so from Wasdale or Borrowdale, thus not appreciating the magnificent valley to the south-east. Taking in the major fells that ring the head of Eskdale, this round includes many of the highest, most interesting and most popular peaks in England, allowing us to fully enjoy this wonderful corner of the Lake District.
Traversing some of Lakeland's biggest fells in a clockwise fashion, we’ll be splitting this route over two days and camping high up in the Esk valley where we hope to get incredible views of . While it means we'll be slowed down by carrying our camping gear with us, it means we get two whole days to take in this breathtaking landscape.
Never wild camped before? This will not be an easy introduction to wild camping; however, as long as you've camped before and have access to a lightweight tent and brew kit, you can so this - see below for details of kit required. That said, some mountain walking experience and a good level of fitness will make difference between a memorable trip and a miserable one.
- Distance: 24 km
- Ascent: 1770m
For full route, see here
IMPORTANT, Please read the following before you sign up to this event:
Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms, even if they are extremely mild, or who lives or is in a support bubble with someone showing symptoms, is asked not to attend. This is in line with the government’s coronavirus advice.
All are required to practice social distancing – staying 2m (not 1m) apart at all times, including the lunch stop.
Unfortunately, there won’t be any planned pub / café stops en route or at the end, and please don’t share sweets or snacks with others – we’re sorry!
Public transport use to the start point is discouraged, as this is a non-essential journey.
Please bring your own hand sanitising gel for your own use throughout the day. Use of face coverings is at your own choice.
On walks, one person to hold open gates and allow everyone to walk through – so minimising surfaces that multiple people touch.
Be aware that opportunities for toilet stops may be minimal if facilities are closed.
Please, please cancel at your earliest opportunity if you are unable to attend or are unwell, so that we can allow others to take up these valuable event spaces.
Much as it's difficult - no handshakes or hugs!
OutdoorLads draws your attention to the fact that travelling and being away from home increases the risk of receiving and transmitting Coronavirus, whilst it is present in the UK. You are likely to choose not to participate in OutdoorLads events whilst there is a risk of Coronavirus transmission. However, should you choose to participate in OutdoorLads events whilst the risk is present, you must be aware of and follow the law and government guidelines, both when travelling to and from events as well as when participating in events.
Please note that every person participating should be aware of (and accept) that those members perceived as ‘in charge’ or leading the event are not experts, do not need to be experts, and are not regarded by OutdoorLads, or themselves as experts, but are amateurs with some experience in the event type and who are happy to impart their knowledge. Any advice given should be considered with this in mind by the recipient.
By signing up to and attending an OutdoorLads event, you are confirming that you have read, understood and accept the content of this statement.
What to bring
In addition to the usual hillwalking gear - details below - you will need to bring your camping kit. Unlike car-camping, however, wild camping requires lighter kit and a nit more thought to ensure that you have everything you need for a safe and comfy trip, without buckling beneath the weight of it all; your full rucksack (including water) should weigh less than 16kg (and less than 25% of your bodyweight).
- Lightweight tent - 1-2 man 3 season tent is ideal
- Sleeping matt
- Sleeping bag - make sure this is kept dry
- Spare dry clothes (leggings or long johns are great to change into)
- Extra Water containers (hydration bladders can be a pain to fill from a stream) and purification tablets
- Camping stove and pans, plus fuel
- Knife, fork, spoon
- Head torch and spare batteries
- Hygiene kit - tooth brush, toothpaste, hand sanitiser, biodegradable soap
- A small trowel (plastic is best) and loo roll
- Ziplock bags for your rubbish
- Drybags - for protecting all your kit items
- Midge repellant - they love to come out while you’re having your evening meal
- Swimmers (River Ask has some amazing swim spots!)
Regular Mountain Kit:
- Rucksack: For carrying all your camping kit, a daypack is no use, You should source an expedition pack or otherwise comfy pack of 60-90litres
- Boots: waterproof and breathable hiking boots with good ankle support
- Gaiters: recommended for wet weather or boggy conditions
- Socks: proper walking socks will keep your feet dry and help prevent blisters, and carry a spare, dry pair
- Walking Poles: always optional, love them or hate them, but give them a try and decide for yourself
- Layered clothing: lets you quickly adapt to changes in the weather and body temperature. Go for a base layer (vest or t-shirt) and a mid layer (a micro fleece or shirt) and in cooler weather add an outer layer (a windproof jacket or thick fleece)
- Trousers: no jeans as they become heavy and cold in the rain, breathable fabrics are more comfortable and dry and on warm days shorts are OK
- Waterproof jacket: essential when hiking in all but the calmest of weather, breathable fabrics are more comfortable and dry.
- Gloves: Windproof, or better still, waterproof gloves are the best choice, bring a spare pair if expecting rain.
- Hat or cap: stay warm in winter and shaded in summer
- Sunglasses: for any sunny day, even in winter
- Sun cream: can be useful even on cloudy and winter days
- Emergency equipment: additional high energy food, a survival bag, a whistle, a medical kit, a torch and something to make fire (either storm proof matches or a firelighter
- Map and compass: the walk leader will have these, but if you like map reading or want to develop your skills, bring yours along
- Mobile Phone: keep it in a waterproof bag for use in emergencies, and a spare battery/charger is a good idea
- Medicines: if you have hay fever, diabetes, minor ailments etc.
- Waterproof bags: keep spare clothing, electronics and anything else dry even when your rucksack leaks by using Ziploc type food bags or, better still, outdoor activity waterproof bags
The wild camping code: Leave no trace
This is the crucial rule of wild camping and ideally you will create minimum impact on your desired area so it still remains natural and wild. Better still, you should leave the site so no one can tell you’ve even been there.
Food & drink
We'll be carrying everything we need for two days; that means in addition to the usual daytime lunch and snacks (x2) (nuts, seeds, oatcakes/crackers, cheese, cereal bars, sarnies, chocolate etc.) we'll need an evening meal and a light breakfast. Good lightweight foods are instant noodles, powdered soup, instant porridge, muesli, milk powder. It's worth remembering that rice and pasta can take quite a while to cook, which means using more gas. Real fruit and vegetables can be very welcome luxuries, but can be heavy.
We'll be sure to camp near a water supply so we can restock for day 2, but you may wish to bring water purification tablets or boil water before drinking.