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Daring Deeds - real stories, expeditions, road trips and adventure

Dawn Ride

By Jay Oram | 21, May, 2012

Dawn on Derwent Water

An early morning ride around Derwent Water

For the past few years the Keswick Festival hasn't had the best of luck with the weather - last year the show was called off due to high winds. Our stand took a bit of a battering that year!

This year was going to be diffefrent, the forecast was gloomy to begin with but then it showed signs of promise. Friday and saturday had gone very well and late on saturday evening we were sitting by the lake outside the events bar, sun shining and not a cloud in the sky. The next morning saw what felt like thousands undertake the Mountain Festival Triathlon - it was an early start and the 5am wake up spurred me on to get out in the beautiful sunshine before openning the stand.

Anna had spent the previous day on a bike skills course with Cyclewise and I was keen to get out and enjoy the lake district scenery to. So I set off early and started anti-clockwise round the lake. Not such an easy start, as getting to the base of catbells involved coming away from the lake to cross a bridge over the Middle Derwent and navigating past a lot of big halls and houses before finding the coastal path that followed the western side of the lake. I cycled round to Newlands Outdoor centre as I knew the path would follow from there and had a cool view of Keswick and the Eastern fells from below Catbells.

Travelling through the woods before popping out further down the valley was great and seemed like it was going downhill. Then after circling the southern end and crossing the small bridge over the upper derwent I re-joined the coastal path where the Ferry sets off from. The views were great and the lake was crystal clear and didn't have a single ripple.

Following the path back North I could see Catbells across the water and Walla Crag up ahead - along the whole length there had been a number of memorials and stones, but not sure on time I only stopped to read a few - but the most spectacular was the split stone close to the National parks 100th Birthday plaque in Caffclose bay.

My adventure was nearlly up and I was about ready for an Ice cream before openning the stand, as I got closer to Crow park and The Theatre by the Lake I could hear something over the PA system and as I pulled into the derwent marina hundreds of people were coming towards me in wetsuits! I had timed it just right and got to see the start of the Tri-athlon in the sun, with a cup of tea in hand.

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