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#3389 - 04/02/05 05:24 AM Best month in spring?
Gregg Offline
Full Member

Registered: 18/01/05
Posts: 369
Loc: Cotati, CA, USA
I'm planning to walk the dales this spring and wonder about the weather in March, April and May.
April is my first choice to beat the May crowds, but I've heard that March is dry, sunny, but colder, and could be a sleeper month. Also, is May weather really that much better than April?
Could anyone give me a head's up on this? I'll need to get my airline ticket soon.

#3390 - 04/02/05 11:40 AM Re: Best month in spring?
June Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/04/99
Posts: 186
Loc: Birmingham, West Midlands
The English weather doesn't come with guarantees, I'm afraid - you can get good weather in March, but you've a better chance in April or May. Probably best to avoid the main holiday dates (Easter weekend is 25-28 March; May Day holiday 2nd May and Spring holiday 30 May - these are Mondays but people often take long weekends). Personally I'd choose April or May and most likely May. You'll certainly get longer days and probably warmer ones.

#3391 - 04/02/05 03:23 PM Re: Best month in spring?
lmoose Offline

Registered: 22/10/04
Posts: 6
Loc: US
We walked it in early May and that year May was great. We made the mistake June mentioned of starting from Ilkley on a Monday bank holiday so it was crowded along the strid and at Bolton Abbey. After that we never saw more than 2 people a day on the trail - maybe because it was so early in the month. If you can't be sure about the weather you know the days will be longer in May and that's always a plus.

#3392 - 05/02/05 03:42 AM Re: Best month in spring?
Gregg Offline
Full Member

Registered: 18/01/05
Posts: 369
Loc: Cotati, CA, USA
Thanks for the info - I think late April will be best for me. Last year, I walked the hills of Glen Columcille (Ireland) in April and the C2C in Oct. Lots of rain both times so I'm hoping for a little sun this time in the unpredictable UK. The longer day towards May is certainly a good point.

All the best from northern California!

#3393 - 05/02/05 09:48 AM Re: Best month in spring?
Tom de Sherwood Offline

Registered: 24/11/04
Posts: 264
Loc: Nottingham, England
Hey Gregg, many years ago I enjoyed working in your part of the world. In Fact on the Central Pacific Railway. I was there about four weeks and worked between "Yreka" and "Red Buff".
I never had the chance to do any walking, but I would have loved to walk around Shasta and her lake.
I shall never forget the moment when I was working one day and I saw a bear come down to the Sacramento River. Not the sort of thing one comes across in Dear Old England.
Enjoy your walk when you get here.

#3394 - 06/02/05 08:46 PM Re: Best month in spring?
H Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/07/03
Posts: 233
Loc: Yorkshire
Must agree with the "mooseman" ... If you can time it so that you avoid the section between Bolton Abbey and Buckden during a weekend, you'll see no-one on the route, until you get to Windemere - in either April, or May.

That said even Saturdays aren't to bad - but Sundays in Whardfedale? ... Forget it!

H. (Hence my delight at the timing of Stans [the dog] puking on the ultra clean boots of Sunday walkers in Kettlewell - somewhere else in this topic)

#3395 - 27/02/05 11:22 AM Re: Best month in spring?
rab Offline

Registered: 20/03/03
Posts: 17
Loc: England
I completed the walk in 2002 & set off late april on a Monday. Met two characters enjoying a pint in sunshine at the Red Lion in Burnsall, (Ca`nt remember the walk into Grassington because of heavy head!). Thereafter for the remainder of the walk, with the exeption of overnighting & Bowness, not a soul was seen. Sheer tranquility. Completed walk in 6 days taking it easy, with only 1 day of rain showers, came home with sun tan & fully refreshed. Enjoy yourself

#3396 - 28/02/05 04:26 AM Re: Best month in spring?
Gregg Offline
Full Member

Registered: 18/01/05
Posts: 369
Loc: Cotati, CA, USA
Rab, I hope my walk turns out as well as yours except for the heavy head. I'll be starting 20 April on a Wednesday and be out of the Lake District and back in Calif by the May bank holiday. I have most of my room reservations which seem to be easier to get in April than later.

Tom, I'm actually in Sonoma wine country, but love to go hiking in the Trinity Alps up west of Redding - great country but little known, although you can still hit snow walking in July.

Looking forward to some more great ales.


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