Sunday, 30 April 2017

Working Weekend at the hut

The main task of the weekend was to improve the pathway from the main hut to the annex.
Simon was the architect and arrived at the hut with his father's truck laden with 2.4 metre decking board and stakes.  The idea of staking out the area for the decking board was worrying as there are unmarked water and electrical services between the two properties.  In areas where there might be a potential disaster, the stakes were only lightly put into the ground.
Tiles and a permeable fabric layer formed the base layer finished off with two tonnes of Honister stone  The cost of the project was under £300.
The turning circle for cars at the hut was also improved.  Ian had provided plastic hexagons which were laid on a prepared surface, filled with sand already stored at the hut, and covered with Honister stone.  The track at the other end of the turning circle was also flattened with much mud and vegetation removed.  We'll see how it goes once the ravishes of wet weather take their toll.
Car parking has always been a problem because the main track is lower than the car parking areas.  The rise onto the car parking areas has been much reduced so a slower drive on can be made.

The solar panels for the fridge battery were in line with the roof and at a good angle for a country like Spain rather than England.  In a trial, one of the solar panels was elevated from, 30 degrees to 60 degrees.  Immediately the power to the fridge battery increased by over 50%

Stuart, Simon W, Ian and Ken work on the path.

Ian was wishing to add to his list of 'Wainwrights.  He persuaded Ken to join him in the ascents of Barrow and Outerside starting at 7pm on the Saturday evening.  To our surprise, there were hundreds of people ascending Barrow.  We learnt that they were preparing for the "Keswick Festival of light".  The idea was that over a thousand people should ascend the peaks of Barrow, Outerside and Stile End then walk just after sunset 5 metres apart with torches in the colours of the Nepalese flag into the valley of the Coledale.  On the top of Barrow we could already see hundreds of people ascending Outerside.  As the procession started, everyone switched on their head lamps now coated with colours of red, green, yellow and white.  It was indeed a spectacular sight to see these hundreds of light descending the three ridges of Barrow, Outerside and Stile End into the Coledale valley.

On the Sunday, the work of re-angling the solar panel was quickly done leaving time for an ascent and scramble of Hall Fell Ridge on Blencathra.  It was a quick ascent but even quicker on the way down for Ken who slipped and cut his hand needing medical attention at Keswick Hospital.

Thanks to the efforts of Brian S we have at last got a qualified LPG engineer to look at the shower at the hut.  We were hoping that it just needed a service, but the engineer is unfamiliar with the brand and will be fitting a new unit in compliance with modern legislation.