My grandson Mackenzie has been getting restless. I have been away quite a bit recently and he has been missing our walks. He is 9 years old and we often go on the moors together, walking and exploring.
So he was missing his exercise and needed a long walk – we both did.
He hasn’t been up any mountains, not ‘proper’ ones anyway. To some, Penyghent may not be a ‘proper’ mountain, but nevertheless it can be quite intimidating, especially if you are a young boy. But Mackenzie is made of stern stuff and I thought he would be OK with it.
There are various thoughts about how the mountain got it’s name, but perhaps the most common one is from the old Cumbric language meaning ‘Hill of Winds’. It is certainly very windy on the top!
So we parked up and the sun was shining and the meadows were green and it was quite mild. But as we walked up the old moor roads it got colder as we got higher, and there was soon now on the ground and ice in the puddles. Being 9, Mackenzie started scooping up hand fulls of snow and making snow balls he threw them at everything he saw. I told him to stop – not wanting to be a spoil sport, but I knew his gloves would get wet and make his hands cold. But he took no notice and I didn’t press the point home – perhaps I should have.
Anyway, we eventually got to the top of the mountain and after a few minutes it started to blow a blizzard, and very soon turned into a white out. A small party of walkers was up there and somone had a thermometer with them, and he reported that it was minus 6. I could tell Mackenzie wasn’t happy, and feeling his hands soon discovered that they were wet and his gloves were soaked. He was getting cold. I gave him my gloves and we had a hot drink and a cuddle to keep warm. Fortunately there is a shelter on top and we waited behind this till the snow abated, and we made our way down. He was OK and not in any danger, just had cold hands – which made him feel cold all over.
He said that he shouldn’t have thrown the snowballs and kept his gloves dry. Sometimes it is best to find things out for yourself.
Anyway, we were soon in Penyghent Cafe having a hot chocolate. He did really well, having walked 9 miles and climbed 2,277 feet. I was proud of him.
And the views from the top was superb too!