We just completed walking the Bob Graham round in 4 days backpacking. We started at Honister and cached food at Dunmail Raise on the way in, to be picked up for camps 2 and 3.
It covers some wonderful country, most of the iconic hills of the central and northern Lakes.
We have tried this before twice and not completed because of blisters or iliotibial band problems. This time also we did not find it easy 4 long days for us. The weather could not have been better, well perhaps a bit hot and some water sources were dry. You can't have everything.
It makes you very aware how fit the runners who do it in 24 hours are.
Be wary of wild camping anywhere on the exact route of the Round in summer months...your quite likely to be woken up at 2am by people shining torches at your tent and shouting at the top of their voices as if no one was in the feckin thing..
We have done the Welsh 3000's in a day and I think the BGR is tougher.
We started at Honister so that Dunmail Raise was halfway round and cached food there on the way in and picked up the tin on the way out. We stopped in Keswick for a meal.
Our first camp was foxes tarn just after Scafell, second was on the col between Seat Sandal and Fairfield, there is a spring there. the third was the round sheep pen by the river Caldew between Blencathra and Great Calva.
The difficult bits are getting in and out of Wasdale its steep and steel fell descending (the way we did it) to Dunmail Raise. If you go the other way descending Hall's Fell off Blencathra is slow and difficult if it is raining. You need long days but late in the year the higher vegetation will slow you more on the pathless bits. Mind you in the 4 years I have been looking at it the pathless bits have more path than they did
The clever tips are the runners route up Bowfell from Rossett Pike and the path to avoid the crags up Yewbarrow. Finding water is more of a problem than most of the Lakes because you are nearly always on a ridge. Doing Fairfield as an out and back without your pack is more important for backpackers. Thge fast runners have ropes ready to do Broad stand if you are not bold it is probably best to avoid by Foxes tarn. There is a route across to Mickledoor without loosing all the height by cutting across at the base of the cliffs when you can. It is worth scouting all these routes beforehand
Just to put the BGRounders into perspective Billy Bland walked it in 22ish hours on his 3rd go!
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