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Lake District SOTA Weekend 18/19th May 2019


Over the years, my philosophy for the Lake District is to expect the weather to be bad and be pleased if it isn’t. This contrasts with Scotland, where I expect the weather to be bad and am surprised if it isn’t!


Just following up on what Tom said, if you want cheap accommodation the Youth Hostel in Keswick is an option: YHA Keswick

An alternative if you are activating in the North/West Lakes and want something more remote is YHA Black Sail.

There is also a YHA Ambleside. Book in January for any YHA and save 25%!

There really are so many options for accommodation in the Lakes that I’m not sure recommending one hotel in Keswick for example is the right thing to do. If you are looking to activate The Old Man of Coniston for example then maybe you will want to be staying in Coniston?

I haven’t any personal experience of hotels in Keswick so am not going to put my name to a recommendation - I am quite happy for anyone else to provide recommendations and maybe folk will orient themselves in a particular direction.

Still looking at Saturday night watering hole options - I guess I better try a couple out first :wink:


I think that’s only valid until end of April (so it does include Easter)

Let me know if you need company :wink:


Be aware of: Keswick Mountain Festival the same weekend - I’m always great with my timing! I’m treating this as a happy coincidence but it will mean you’ll need to get accommodation booked sooner rather than later if staying over.


That explains why so many hotels etc. are already full in and around Keswick. :man_facepalming:

I think I’ll book somewhere with free cancellation in the environs of Keswick whilst there is space. Then when you decide where the evening meetup is, I can change the booking if needed.


So, I take it there are not a lot of campgrounds in the area of the Lake District? Seems like a few google searches states that most of the lands in the LD is private and wild camping is hard to come by? Looking into the logistics of joining you guys on the weekend, and if the area hotels are possibly full, just considering all options…

Thanks in advance


6 on the Camping and Caravanning website

Other options may also be available


Not a camper myself but intend booking in somewhere, probably Friday and Saturday in a hotel = 3 days walking and activating, two short, one long. Keswick will be very full with the mountain festival, didn’t know it was on - consider a review? Such as an alternative town such as Kendal or Ambleside? I wouldn’t have a problem with either. As you know also, as you are living there, overseas visitors can catch a train to Windermere - forget you live there, if there was a suitable venue for Saturday night again, I wouldn’t be too concerned if it was Windermere. But if it was arranged there I would stay within walking distance of the venue.

Will you be organising a “Ladies Programme”? (hihi!).

73 de Phil


Yes - I’m happy to consider an alternative meeting point given the situation with the mountain festival. Windermere has a good variety of accomodation - isn’t too far from Ambleside YHA either and as mentioned has a train station which may suit some. Would this inconvenience anyone too much? I’m presuming most folk will have transport - so even if you have booked up somewhere in Keswick the only thing you will be missing is the ability to drink too much - which surely everyone will be keeping under control with another day of activating after the evening meetup on Saturday?

Please let me know if this is an issue ASAP as the sooner we can settle on a potentially alternative destination the better

This would also give me the option of providing transport for SOTA activators who maybe don’t have a car to a summit or two.


I’ve booked Keswick thinking that was where we were meeting. A drink or two is always pleasant but my tolerance for drinking and driving is lower than for drinking and activating (the next day).
Still, we’re a democracy and a sober night doesn’t kill me!


I think it likely that many folk will consider accommodation based on where they want to activate on Sunday. Maybe in light of that where we meet up is a secondary consideration unless you really like your beer. Having accommodation in the North of the Lakes will allow an earlier start after breakfast if you want to do Skiddaw or the North Western fells.

If we decide Windermere I can give a pub for Saturday night now!


Driving me back from the pub (hichic) :wink:


The change to 50mg in GM compared with 80mg in G that happened a few years back had a profound change on me. Before then I would drink no more than 1pt of average strength beer if I was driving, possibly as two halves instead of 1pt. The change was the kick up the backside I needed to not drink even a small amount and drive. I’m also aware that the next morning after a heavy night can mean you are still over the (lower GM) limit.

It would be great if we knew the evening session will be in town X or village Y so that I can make arrangements to stay somewhere in walking distance or taxi distance where the fare wont be similar to the UK national debt. :wink:


We of course should all be trying to get our partners to join the SOTA cause, but in the meantime there are a variety of alternative attractions in the Windermere area for those who want to stay low!


I think sensibly the alternative is either a different weekend with Keswick as the base or the same weekend in an alternative location. A different weekend is going to be much more disruptive at this stage.

I vote Windermere based on connectivity, I know the place, can recommend accommodation and eateries and pubs and it will give me opportunity to help those that might struggle with transport. It was probably the sensible choice from the outset.

The Saturday night venue I recommend is the Brookside in Windermere, but to be honest you could pick any pub in Windermere or Bowness and you would be within walking distance of your accomodation in either town.

So with Andy’s @G6PJZ blessing I think this is the best alternative. To be fair I would have been doing the drive in the other direction had we been in Keswick.

OK? Mark M0N0M


Yes Andy, I doubt if anyone is planning what I used to call a heavy session in my bad old seafaring days! But I wouldn’t drink more than a pint (with a meal) and drive these days. I don’t think I can change my booking but I hope to meet up (don’t make it too far from Keswick).

She’ll be with me, but as a long distance runner has a short tolerance level on summits. I need good weather, shelter, good views and somewhere she’s happy to explore whilst I “play 10/4 big buddy” (her words :woozy_face:)


I get “radio geekyiness” levelled at me from my better half and two daughters. To be fair to my wife she really didn’t get radio at all until she joined me on an activation and witnessed the joy of a pile up.


And they’re the ones that love and understand us!


Love. It’s just love.


Mrs. FMF takes a simple view… if there is a gathering of hams in some place then it’s better to be some place else because there must be fewer hams there if there’s more of them some other place!