Rubicon V.S.U.

Coniston Venture Camp 1993

Me, Adrian Seal, Sarah Withey, Anna Whitehead, Rich Martin, Michael Bailey, William Bugg, Andy Gregory, Ann-Marie Gregory, Paul Gamblen, James Bardill, Paul Furmston and Frances Moffat.

Sunday 29th August - Get to the hut for 9.30, van was fully packed the night before. Throw the rucksacks in and go. In the van are me, AMG in the front, Paul Furmston, William, Fran, Michael Bailey, James Bardill, Andy Gregory. Adjy's car has Adjy, Sarah, Chinney, and Rich. Anna goes in her car with lots of gear. Arrive at about 3pm. Down to the 'Black Bull' later. Everyone stays up for a while around the fire.

Monday 30th August - Wake to a clear blue sky. Walk into Coniston and then up the Old Man. Anna, Rich and Fran come up ½ way and then go down. Sandwiches by the lake. Good views from the top. Swim in the waterfalls near the youth hostel. Go to the Black Bull. Argue with a family about taking their table. Trouble nearly starts when two big Scottish blokes 'Call our Unit'.

Tuesday 31st August - Hire 6 Canadian canoes and 1 kayak from noon. Rich goes in the kayak first, goes in after 100 yards and again in mid lake. I canoe with William and then Chinney. Have a picnic on the other side, brilliant sunshine. Sarah goes out in the kayak and goes over. Me and Adjy rescue her with a Canadian as the lake rescue boat won't start. Later Paul, Chinney and I sleep out, I snore apparently !

Wednesday 1st September - Get into Coniston for 11am, we all hire bikes from Summitreks. Go up into Grizedale forest. They give us a map but we see a lot of no cycling signs. Start up a very steep hill, I get to the top just after William, lots of complaints when everyone else gets up. Go into the forest, lose our way immediately, navigate only from the sun and contours. End up at the 'Eagle' at Satterthwaite, welcome rest, they do sandwiches etc., stay till 2.30. Try to follow the tracks on the map on the way back but soon lose it. Go down steep hills down to the lake following Paul F, nearly hit a landrover, big time, nightmare on brakes street. Go into Ambleside for drinks. Adjy and Sarah, Me and Anna go to the Unicorn the others to the Sportsman.

Thursday 2nd September - Drive down to watch Gary Davies at the Radio 1 road-show in Bowness. Later go to the cinema and see 'In the Line of Fire' with Clint Eastwood. Rush back to the van and to Ambleside for chips. Down to the 'Black Bull' later. Sleep out, but my snoring wakes Chinney.

Friday 3rd September - Rest day. Adjy and Sarah go to Ambleside, Anna goes to Windermere. Me, Will and Fran stay behind and get a lot of wood from the forest. Chin, Rich and PF go to the 'Black Bull' for a gallon, Rich has OP the others XB, they wander back by 6pm. Go to the 'Drunken Duck' later, Rich shouts across the room 'Prof where's the sh*tter ?' after I give him directions a man on the next table leans over and quietly says 'I assume he means the toilet'.

Saturday 4th September - Late breakfast, go to Keswick leisure pool, good swim and slide. Back to the campsite, start a fire immediately, huge blaze, good embers after ½ hours. Put chicken and bacon in for 40 minutes. Boil potatoes first and then put them in the fire, best ever. Up to the Drunken Duck for 10pm, buy a couple of t-shirts and 1 for Sarah. William and AMG also sleep out, cold at night, frost in the morning.

Sunday 5th September - Up at 9am, cook breakfast. Everyone works well and all packed away and depart by 1pm. I get home for 9pm.

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