Wainwright Walks-Scafell Pike

I just watched Wainwrights walks on BBC 4 andI was very surprised that it took 10 hours for Julia Bradbury the walk up Scafell Pike G/LD-001. When me and my Dad M1EYP have walked up Scafell pike, it has only ever taken 4 hours to get to the summit.

When she was on the summit it looked to be 6pm in the evening due to where the sun is. Also her rucksack was very small. She still had to decend back to Seathwaite and she should have carried all camping equipment.

In conclusion, I don’t think she did the full walk there and back. I think she was on a helicopter for most of the walk there and back.

Jimmy M3EYP

In reply to M3EYP:

Hi Jimmy

I think they claim that they do all the walking properly. The 10 hours may have included filming which could easily double the time taken. I imagine that there were several people with her so perhaps they carried the heavy stuff.

I was reading an article today by a Mountain Rescue Team Leader who was critical of such programmes for making it all look too easy and seldom showing anyone actually navigating (or getting lost!). His suggestion was that this increased the number of inexperienced people on the hills who then got into trouble - and had to be rescued.



In reply to M3EYP:
My Dad went to the Wainwright society AGM a while ago to hear Julia speak and asked about this walk. She said that the filming made it so long and no helicopter was provided so they had to pick their way down in the dusk.

I recall doing a piece for Channel 4 news on cycling. It took three hours to get the footage including following the cameraman in the journalist’s car for ten miles. The result was a three minute item.

David 2E0DAI

In reply to M6WOW:

It all sounds typical of what I have heard. My father was the subject of a slot on GMTV called Bob does Vagas or something similar. Seven days of filming ten hours a day in Los Vagas resulted in five three minute slots on the program. Because of the early morning timing I only managed to see one slot, but that was a bit better than when he previously appeared on TV on a show that went out at 2am. He appeared every week for a whole series but no one we know ever saw it. I think it was called The Hitman and Her.

Steve GW7AAV

In reply to GW7AAV:

Your dad isn’t Pete Waterman is it?!? I remember that dreadful show; it was always on when we got in from playing gigs in the late 80s, and was rather bemused by the whoe concept!

I agree, the filming probably near trebled the ascent time for Julia and crew, but in the programme, that wasn’t made clear - it was kind of put across as though that’s how long it takes to climb the mountain! I feel a bit uneasy that this sort of programme, that largely celebrates and showcases the LD to the uninitiated, demonstrates an ascent of Scafell Pike that summits at sunset, with a tiny pack.

Of course, we all know that the crew would have carried loads more gear, but the message on the screen is a little unrealistic!

It was actually a very enjoyable half hour of telly, and we enjoyed reliving our own experiences. Jimmy was surprised that Wainwright/Julia followed Grains Gill / Broad Crag rather than Sty Head / Corridor Route, which is much superior in our experience. And then, she would not have had to detour to see Sprinkling Tarn.

I’m glad they are repeating all these; there’s loads of them I’ve missed.


In reply to M1EYP:

I found the program interesting because, oddly enough, I’ve never done it from that side. My usual approaches have been via Hollow Stones, a couple of times via Scafell with the interestingly arm-stretching drop to Mickledoor, and once up Lingmell in a white-out! When you usually head to the hills with mates from a climbing club, you end up camping or hutting where the climbing is, rather than the classic walks, so I usually camp in Wasdale or stay at Brackenclose.

I imagine that in addition to a full camera, sound and support crew, they gave some employment to a couple of guides in case things got sticky.


Brian G8ADD

In reply to M1EYP:

“I’m glad they are repeating all these; there’s loads of them I’ve missed.”

You need the DVD set Tom… mine are getting worn out! I’m hoping they will film a third series, but I suspect they will maybe make Series Two of the Railway Walks before they consider a third based on AW’s peramubulations.

73, Gerald

In reply to M1EYP:

No, Tom my old man is not the DJ and gravedigger Pete Waterman just a guy who makes people vanish. Oh! and pulls rabbits from hats.

Both series of Wainwright’s Walks have been shown in order all together a couple of times on the satellite channel Home & Garden. So it might be worth setting up the Sky Plus and recording them next time, if you have one. I saw a previous Wainwright’s program with a similar format hosted by an ex-weatherman; it was rubbish as was the photography. Julia may be easy on the eye but the scenery is eye wateringly beautiful, but try telling my misses that is why I watch it over and over again.

Not seen the railway walks so I hope that is shown again soon so I can catch up.

I can see it now…

Wife "What on Earth are you watching?"
Husband "Country File"
Wife "How long have you been interested in farming?
Husband trys to flick the copy of Radio Times with Julia Bradbury in wellies under the sofa with his foot. “Err!”