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Thursday, January 24, 2013

North Face of the Eiger? No, this is the Peak District! But just wait until the Big Thaw hits this weekend

By LARISA BROWN

Mark Procter (orange helmet) and David Pendlebury were the first pair to make the climb today. Known as Kinder Downfall the waterfall is the tallest in the Peak District

With vast swathes of ice cascading 100ft down the bare rock, this waterfall looks as deadly as it does beautiful.
But that only added to the attraction for these intrepid climbers yesterday.
Kinder Downfall, the highest in the Peak District, had succumbed to days of sub-zero temperatures and transformed into a natural sculpture of Alpine grandeur.
First up were Mark Proctor, in the orange helmet, and David Pendlebury, who had waited eagerly for the falls to freeze solid before strapping on their crampons and using ice axes to haul themselves up.

Photographed from behind the waterfall, Andrew Cherry marvels at the frozen phenomena before starting his climb. The river Kinder cascades over the top of the Kinder Scout plateau near the Pennine Way 2,087 ft above sea level

While climbers relished the opportunity to clamber up this gorgeous frozen scene, but forecasters predict rain, higher temperatures and flooding across the country by the weekend

Kinder Downfall, the highest in the Peak District, had succumbed to days of sub-zero temperatures and transformed into a natural sculpture of Alpine grandeur

Anyone tempted to follow had better be quick, however.
The falls are likely to be flowing again within days, with forecasters predicting rain, higher temperatures – and flooding across the country.
Disruption to schools and transport continued yesterday, as up to 3.5in of snow fell in the South and the South West, the West Midlands and Wales.
Southeastern Trains has cancelled a number of early morning trains today in order to use the carriages on other services.

Great WHITE shark! Six-year-old Tyler in an incrdible sculpture built by Sara Lee Burton, from Kirk Langley in Derbyshire

It said Network Rail had asked it to run some of the early morning services with more carriages, because it makes the trains less likely to be affected by icy rails.
Overnight temperatures were noticeably milder and it is expected to stay above freezing today.
But on Saturday, most of the country will remain above freezing for the first time in days, with temperatures rising further at the start of next week.

Malvern Abbey as seen from the Malvern Hills, Worcestershire, yesterday as the latest snowfall has created some postcard perfect scenes around the country but has caused chaos elsewhere

Famous scene: Snow covers Gold Hill in Shaftesbury, Dorset yesterday. The hill features in the Hovis bread television advert in which a boy pushes his bike up the steep cobbles

Met Office forecaster Helen Chivers said: ‘There will be a gradual warming over the weekend helping to thaw out Britain, with the rain and rising temperatures melting the snow.
‘By Saturday, we can expect a fine day and sunshine for most of the country. But as a result of the thaw, we will have more surface water and a greater risk of localised flooding.’
According to one Environment Agency adviser, however, there is a way to minimise flooding – build a snowman.

The car is almost completely covered after a series of snow flurries across the country, including in the north

Ray Stokes, the agency’s flood risk manager for the Midlands, says snow and ice packed into a snowman, or just a plain old mound, thaws out much more slowly than a thin dusting on the ground, allowing more time for the meltwater to disperse.
He said: ‘Ideally if everybody built themselves a snowman that will slow the thaw down a bit. If you notice when people clear their drive the snow thaws away but the compacted piles stay, which will give a balanced thaw.’

An abandoned bus on the A39 road yesterday, where the incident affected 30 motorists

Treacherous road conditions on the A39 near Nether Stowey this morning. Drivers travelling on the road were forced to abandon their cars as a build up of snow blocked their path

Snow covers a Land Rover parked in a street in the Mendip village of Priddy in Somerset today

A local resident braves the thick snow and ice in the village of Nether Stowey yesterday as the roads continue to look treacherous

Teenage girls celebrate in the snow in their wellington boots after their school was closed in the South West due to the blizzards

A young girl and a man take to the slopes in one of the worst affected areas at Honiton in east Devon

Picturesque: Stonehenge on Salisbury Plain, Wiltshire sits in a snow covered field yesterday morning after heavy snowfall

Stonehenge looks picturesque this morning as a blanket of snow covers the fields surrounding it

Pretty: A robin sits on a snow covered branch in a garden in Northumberland as the snowstorms affect swathes of the country

A Red Panda is pictured in the snow at Cannon Hill Parks Nature Centre in Birmingham today. There are now fears of floods this weekend as snow and ice melts

A snowman stands on a fishing pitch on the banks of the frozen River Ure, near Hawes in Wensleydale

A snowy scene near Ripponden, West Yorkshire as a woman and her dog battle through the treacherous conditions

Creative: Allan Watkins is pictured with his snow sculpture of The Simpsons family - including Bart, Homer, Marge, Lisa and Maggie

The man is practicing for the Aviemore Sled Dog Rally this weekend

Huskies pant during the training session in the snow and below freezing temperatures yesterday

Lady in red: A walker stops to grab a picture of a snow scene from a rose garden in Worcestershire

Herons fighting in London's Regents Park in the snow earlier in the week. They are being forced to battle it out for food as their usual watery hunting ground was covered with thick snow and ice

source: dailymail



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