We wanted to combine a team building exercise with our Christmas party this
year. My family have been visiting the lake district, going to The Screes Inn at
Nether Wasdale each year for holidays for over 20 years now. For us the heart of the village, from a visitors perspective, is the Screes Inn. It has always provided great affordable food and good beer with friendly staff.
When we visited this summer Steve and Caroline had recently taken over
managing the pub for Robinsons brewery, Steve told us at this time of his
plans for the West Lakes Adventure.
We are a small team at 4Mememorial Bench / Forsyth4, Marlena runs the office, Barrett does the van deliveries and I try and do the rest and not get in the way, at Christmas we all like to get together and enjoy ourselves. Barrett already had rock climbing experience and Marlena and I had been
introduced to it at Warwick University Indoor Rock climbing wall, so it seemed like a good idea to get Steve to take us all rock climbing at Eskdale followed by a Christmas dinner at the Screes Inn cooked by Caroline and make a weekend of it.
The weekend of the 18th/19th December 2010 which turned out to be one of the worst snow falls to be seen in England since 1981 (in read in the daily mail). Sarah (my wife), Emma (my younger daughter) and i arrived on the Friday evening at 10pm having battled through the snow in our defender, followed by Marlena and Kris at 11pm, even though it was past last order for food, Caroline got us all bowls of chips.
We were invited to join in the locals darts competition, £1 to enter, winner akes all. Well little did they know but 25 years ago at Reading University our team at Wantage Hall had won the inter hall darts championship ! I am pleased to say i had not lost my touch, dispatching Caroline in an early round and Steve in the final, I came away with the winnings.
We were staying at a cottage just down the road, but nothing is too much trouble for Steve an Caroline, we asked if they could do breakfast for us all before heading off on the Rock Climb with Steve. Caroline produced a full English breakfast with eggs done to individual taste, it really set us up for the day.
Rock climbing is just one of the adventures that Steve can lay on for you, so can only comment on that. Steve is a responsible, calm and good fun. All the equipment, ropes, harnesses, helmets were all new, comfortable and good quality (just remember to bring your own boots). Our climb was a rock face called diamond crag a short walk from Irton road station (on the ratty steam railway line). The scenery was quite breathtaking, snow all around, cold, but the sun on our faces. Sadly, having got all harnessed up ready for the climb i was called away to rescue Barrett and Julie who were stuck on a snow bound hill near Irton hall. So i was in my element now, John in his Landrover Defender coming to the rescue, my delight was not to last long as after picking them up I also got stuck on an icey hill between Santon bridgeand Nether Wasdale, to be subsequently rescue by Steve (the carpenter) who I have beaten at darts last night.
I am informed that the climbing was great fun, such a same for me to have missed it though.
Early Saturday evening we met all met up in the bar at the Screes Inn, for mulled wine and dizzy blonde beers for our apres climbing party while Caroline was slaving away in the kitchen preparing our lamb feast.
There is a steep hill as you enter the village from the Gosforth direction, Steve was straight on the case when we asked, half joking, for some sledges. 5 sledges were provided for us to work up a good appetite, Steve was to join us later sledging on a snow shovel !, the road was compacted snow, very fast, like a bob sleigh run, from the top of the hill we slide all the way down to the Screes, many times :)
Caroline had roasted two joints of lamb, the lambs and been reared locally on her parents hill farm, and served them for me to carve are requested. We had roasted and boiled seasonal vegetables with gravy. There was so must food i have seconds of most of it. We had bottles of house red and white for £11.95 each, pudding was a homemade lemon cheese cake or a selection of the regulars Screes favourites including chocolate fudge cake, followed by cheese and biscuits. The meal cost at the seasonal Christmas dinner rate of £16.95, which i feel was great food and service for a fantastic price.
Steve and Caroline are the perfect hosts, they joined us for a drink in the bar after the meal when to left at 11pm to head off back to our cottage, it seemed that their night was just beginning with locals and residents still in the bar.
If you looking for adventure, great food, friendly people and spectacular scenery then the West Lakes Adventure and The Screes Inn at Nether Wasdale will not disappoint you.Click here to visit the Screes Inn website Click here to visit West Lakes Adventure website