Cambridgeshire? The same Cambridgeshire that’s one of the flattest counties in the UK?
Yep, that’s the one.
Having returned home from my Yorkshire Three Peaks challenge, the post-adventure blues had really set in.
The children having been
bored to tears inspired by my Y3P tales were also keen to tackle some hills and have an adventure of their own.
Geographically it was always going to be a bit of a challenge to find hills in our region, let alone climb them. However sometimes you’ve just got to make the most of your situation and create some adventure close to home.
So with the help of the Hill bagging Site I set about finding the three highest points in Cambridgeshire. Great Chishill, Castle Camps and Croydon Hill.
The kids well up for the adventure, despite repeated warnings to not get too excited. Trying to explain our local landscape and how gently rolling countryside means they can safely leave their ropes and carabiners at home. 😉
We begin our rather ironic adventure at Croydon Hill. The third highest *ahem* peak in Cambridgeshire. All 83 Metres of it. That’s not a typo. 83 poxy metres.
A gentle stroll to the high point (Sorry, I can’t possibly call it a summit.) and it takes me a while to realise it’s a familiar path. I’ve been here before whilst caching the Hatley Heart Attack power trail. So, apparently my second time conquering this arduous peak. Boy I’m tough. 😉
Some nice, rural views but it’s certainly lacking in excitement.
Enter a well timed strop to liven up proceedings. Not me for once. One of the smalls.
‘Well.’ she huffs, ‘This ISN’T a hill!’
‘No darling, and you were warned it wasn’t.’
‘I WANT TO CLIMB A HILL!’
She’s feisty this one. ‘Where are the rocks?’
As we explain local geography and geology for the umpteenth time, I can’t help but feel secretly pleased.
They want to climb hills. *Air punch*
I’m mentally ordering another tent and booking into a campsite we use at the base of Kinder Scout. Daydreaming happily of scrambling up hillsides as we make our way back to the car. 😊
Our next destination as we cross the region logically is the highest point in Cambridgeshire, Great Chishill. This time reaching a whopping 146 M. Ooh, steady now.
But not before we get stuck in a sodding traffic jam. Mardy kids, and Mr Muddy can always be counted on to lose his patience in traffic. Suddenly the Cambridgeshire Three Peaks does become challenging.
Adventures are never supposed to be easy though right? *Bangs head on dashboard.*
Eventually we make it to Great Chishill, argue about where to park 🙄 and before all plots are completely lost, make the executive decision to take time out and have a picnic first.
Fed, watered and no longer murderous we explore the area. It’s a pretty village, set in gently rolling countryside. We find a church micro geocache and set off up the summit.*
This time a mildly sloping path does lead us towards our goal, and to the kid’s delight a play park rewards their strenuous efforts.**
Whilst the kids and the
bigger kid husband play I wander off to bag the extra metre in height and reach the official peak of Cambridgeshire. With dubious access it’s best tackled discreetly on my own, and in all honesty they didn’t really miss much.
With an overwhelming sense of achievement 😉 I head back to the park and as I round the corner am greeted with the sight of a completely naked, male cyclist. 😳 Clearly not the secluded spot he’d hoped for when changing.
Maybe Great Chishill was a little more exciting than I initially thought… 😆
However we still have one more hill awaiting us.
Our final destination Castle Camps. The second highest point in Cambridgeshire at a lofty 128 M, but actually a perfect place to end the day.
Castle Camps being a historically interesting village, home to remaining earthworks from a Norman Castle and full of fascinating history from it’s time as an RAF station during the Second World War.
We park at the local church which instantly gets the team asking me if there’s a church micro cache here. I’ve trained them well.
A quick check on my gps confirms that indeed we are stood right next to it. It’s a good start.
Distracted by thoughts of castles we head off first to explore the existing earthworks of the motte and bailey before heading off in pursuit of our final peak.
Another slight incline to the path (although I’ve scaled steeper speed bumps) and our earlier stropper who fiercely demanded hills and rocks, is now loudly protesting at how hard this is.
Let’s put this ascent into context…
Squint and you might just see it. Another good measure of how steep the path is, well I’m having no problems staying upright…
However, my earlier Kinder dreams are cruelly dashed. *Mentally cancels imaginary bookings*
We do however recover enough for a sprint finish.
Cambridgeshire Three Peaks consider yourself conquered. ***
*insert sarcasm here.
**Insert more sarcasm here
***You know the drill.