Confessions of a Wainwright bagger

When I moved to the lakes back in 1990 my love of fell walking began. As a softy southerner I didn’t know the lakes or hills. But soon fell in love with them. I went walking to explore new areas, enjoy the stunning views that I was now lucky enough to call my home.

I didn’t really know about the Wainwrights. It was only when I got into twitter and started following people who were posting “just finished the wainwrights” “off to bag some NW fells” I wondered what they were. A twitter friend said “have you done the Wainwrights?” No I replied but I don’t really know what they are. He sent a link and when I counted up I’d done about 120. The Wainwrights are the 214 fells (hills and mountains) described in A. Wainwright’s seven-volume Pictorial Guide to the Lakeland Fells (1955–1966).

So it got me thinking that I really should do them. So a New Years resolution 1st January 2012 I scrapped any memories of previous wainwrights climbed and started from scratch. No time frame to complete.

My first one was Hallin Fell a stunning hill with breath taking views over Ullswater.

In ticking off the Wainwrights, it has taken me to places which I wouldn’t have been to if not attempting to complete the wainwrights. There are some like Amboth which was a boggy horrible hill that I won’t be in a hurry to revisit. Others like Sale fell or Binsey which are fabulous tiny hills but with stunning panoramic views of the lakes.

The obsession as my walking friends describe it does take over. Pouring over maps getting excited by multiple peaks that can be bagged in one walk.
I have completed 136 out of 214. Having set out in a non scientific way, this has left odd ones being missed!

So I’m hoping to complete them by the end of the year. Question is which one to finish on?? I was lucky enough to meet Mr Mountaineer last week Mr Alan Hinkes. He suggested to finish the Wainwrights, then go back to my favourite one and re climb to celebrate the end. I think that’s a jolly good idea.

So back to the planning…..

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3 thoughts on “Confessions of a Wainwright bagger

  1. Jayne, my wife, and I finished ours on the Nab. I decided early on that I would leave it till last as when AW did them it was out of bounds. It was a double celebration as it was also my 50th birthday.

  2. The choice of last fell is important and quite personal, even if it’s a deliberate decision to let chance decide. For me, I’m planning to finish with an epic backpacking trip that sums up my Wainwright round and finishes on a fell I’ve perved over for years and which typifies what I love about the Wainwrights.

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