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Walking by Numbers

When it comes to walking, I get my real buzz out of going high. I love the views, I love the scrambling. 

However I have come to the conclusion that I am also a peak bagger. My walking has increasingly come to revolve around lists of hills which meet various criteria. There is something sad about this but I know that I have gained more than I have lost by doing it. It has given me lots of ideas on good walks and I have rarely been disappointed. I think that it helps in having varied lists as you get into new areas. This is one reason why I get so frustrated with my mates who only seem to want to walk in the Lake District.  

My main lists are:

The Wainwrights

Need I explain? The list of all the separate peaks around which AW organised his seven guides to the Lakeland Fells (214 in total).

The great question is: how did he decide which to include and which to exclude? There do not seem to be any objective criteria. The nearest I can get is that he thought that there was a worthwhile view from each. If so, heís usually right. 

I however struggle to see a redeeming feature for Armboth Fell and I can only suppose that he had some obscure private joke in including Mungrisedale Common. Read on. 

Click on symbol to get a spreadsheet on the Wainwrights

Wainwrights completed: 2pm on1 May 2000 on the wonderful summit of Harter Fell (Eskdale)

The Hewitts

This is an acronym (invented by Alan Dawson) for Hills in England, Wales and Ireland in Excess of Two Thousand feet. He also requires that they have a drop of at least 30 metres on all sides when distinguishes it from the Nuttall list where there is only 15 metres. I prefer Alanís approach it removes some meaningless summits involving trudges across heather and bog. It does unfortunately also remove Pillar Rock but then Iím no rock-climber.

There are 320 in total; I continue to count some that were omitted after a second survey. I reached 214 in  May 2000; in an astounding piece of symmetry it was also my 214th and final Wainwright. Since then I've had a very quiet period, only picking up another 3.

Realistically I don't expect to finish the list. It is too scattered but it does offer focus for walks in new areas.

Click on symbol to get a spreadsheet on the Hewitts


The Marilyns

Another gift from Alan Dawson. These are hills with no minimum height requirement but they have 150 metres of descent on all sides.

The idea is therefore that they stick up from surrounding land, hence their other name, the Relative Hills. I live near to the Wrekin which is a classic example of the theory. However a few are the highest point of a plateau and do not give a real feeling of relative height.

Click on symbol to get the spreadsheet on the Marilyns


You will notice that none of these lists contain Scottish hills; I have even extracted the Scottish Marilyns. There are two reasons;


I cannot pronounce the names. I can make a decent stab at the Welsh names (and boringly correct others who cannot)


I live too far away to make a serious impression on any list. I have walked there and enjoyed it and I want to keep to that relaxed approach.


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