Friday, 24 October 2014

Saturday 26 January 1985 – Ben Vorlich (Loch Lomond)


When Sue and I went up Ben Vorlich a couple of weeks ago I recalled clearly, or so I thought, the views we enjoyed on my previous visit. I’ve now found the diary entry and some snaps (no negatives) from that trip. The images in this posting are therefore photographs of some fairly ancient 6” x 4” prints. (On ‘reflection’ they may have been better scanned, as the photos have picked up reflections from the dark surfaces of the matt prints.) Our clothing and equipment has changed quite a bit since then.

In those days our little group of ‘trippers’'’ took turns in writing ‘The Diary’. On this occasion it was Laurence who drew the short straw. Here’s what he wrote, with captioned pictures inserted as appropriate:

“Rendezvous at Rising Sun. Friday 6.30 pm. ‘Outside the door’ should have been specified as it was too crowded to get inside with gear. Prompt departure to Oswald Road to collect shovel. Thereafter smooth journey with meal break at Gretna, arriving at Ardlui 12.15 am.

Laurie is trying out his new tent, and making one or two discoveries about the principles of comfortable camping. The hard way. The ground is frozen solid, though clear of snow. Pegs bend and fingers go numb, and pitching takes ages. Dave and Martin share their warm tent with a light and cooking facilities; Laurie has a rather chilly night.

[Must bring sleeping bag next time!] comments Dave.

Morning brings a perfectly clear and sunny sky with snow everywhere except the first few hundred feet of the valley. We walk over the railway and up the east ridge. Soon come across footprints along our intended way. Snow quite fresh, soft or slightly crusty, so these prints are a lot of help. Mostly in the shade despite the sun and complete absence of cloud.

Waterfall on the slopes of Ben Vorlich

Dave, Laurie and Martin modelling 1980’s knitwear and wooden ice axes

The ridge eventually leads to Ben Vorlich (3082 ft), and the last part is in and out of a bitterly cold wind. Snowy peaks to the distance in every direction.

Views from the ascent of Ben Vorlich from Ardlui

Dave on Ben Vorlich

Dave and Martin taking all the classic photo shots. [Not sure about that!]

Summit view south to Ben Lomond from Ben Vorlich

Laurie has to hack ice away from the trig point to find its number – 6510 (ancient tradition of trig point collecting). Also attempts to eat a mango but fails when the juice freezes on his lips. Everyone puts on an extra layer at this point.

Searching for the trig point number on Ben Vorlich*

Descend over Little Hills, diverted by good footprints into lower valley. Snow softer and deeper here; pretty hard work. No long slides – shorter ones taken at various angles and orientations (including head first) by all.

On the slithery descent over the Little Hills

Entire descent in shadow, arriving back at camp at 4.30.”

Always one for the last word, I added a few further comments about our being unsure whether we were camping on grass or concrete; meeting a solo artist from Nottingham, also camping, in the Ardlui Hotel – it seems we followed his footprints from the previous day; menus, and a note that Laurie spilt his dinner and ate it from his groundsheet; whinge about everything that had been in liquid form having frozen; futile attempts to moderate alcohol intake given the memory of some pretty awful hangovers on the same trip in 1984.

Overall memories of a fine day in the hills with lots of fresh snow and glistening ice crystals, Laurie’s unpreparedness and (Dave comments) Martin’s clumsiness.

Not mentioned in the old diary is my abiding memory of this trip - the long view* from Ben Vorlich’s summit towards the city of Glasgow, which in my recollection sat below a thick layer of mist beyond Loch Lomond.

Thanks to Laurie for inadvertently providing the main text, and to both him and Dave for many happy memories. I hope you both enjoy this posting.

How better to spend a rainy Friday morning in Timperley?

Thursday, 23 October 2014

A Dolomites Slideshow


Last night (22 October) we had the privilege of providing another ‘slide’ presentation to SWOG (Stockport Walking and Outdoors Group). All went well once an extension lead had been borrowed from the Grapes, and despite the large number of ‘flower’ pictures we managed to complete the task in precisely one hour.

I still have to produce a series of mini annotated slideshows on a day to day basis, and the one hour show:

“Hut to Hut in the Dolomites by Alta Via 1
...a floral interlude...
Followed by a few Day Walks and Via Ferrata”

is available should anyone like us to present it.

Meanwhile, here’s an INDEX to our ‘Summer Holiday’ trip, making navigation through the pages a bit easier for anyone wishing to read about any of it.

Friday 27 June 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 1 - Timperley to Wokingham

Saturday 28 June 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 2 - Wokingham to Montreuil

Sunday 29 June 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 3 - Montreuil to Verdun

Monday 30 June 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 4 - Verdun to Heidelberg

Tuesday 1 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 5 - Heidelberg

Wednesday 2 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 6 - Heidelberg to Scuol

Thursday 3 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 7 - Scuol to Lischana Hütte (Chamonna Lischana)

Friday 4 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 8 - Lais da Rims

Saturday 5 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 9 - Lischana Hütte to Lago di Braies

Sunday 6 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 10 - Lago di Braies to Rifugio Lavarella

Monday 7 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 11 - Rifugio Lavarella to Rifugio Dibona

Tuesday 8 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 12 - Rifugio Dibona to Rifugio Città di Fiume

Wednesday 9 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 13 - Rifugio Città di Fiume to Rifugio Coldai

Thursday 10 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 14 - Rifugio Coldai to Passo Duran

Friday 11 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 15 - Passo Duran to Rifugio Pian de Fontana

Saturday 12 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 16 - Rifugio Pian de Fontana to La Pissa, then Pedraces

Sunday 13 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 17 - Pralongia Plateau

Monday 14 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 18 - Col di Lana

Tuesday 15 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 19 - Sassongher

Wednesday 16 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 20 - Via Ferratas Averau and Nuvalau, and an evening in the pub

Thursday 17 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 21 - Sass de Putia

Friday 18 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 22 - A Walk from Haus Valentin

Saturday 19 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 23 - Badia (Pedraces) to campsite at Lanzada in Val Malenco

Sunday 20 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 24 - Val Malenco

Monday 21 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 25 - Chiesa to Parc Regionale de Haut-Jura

Tuesday 22 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 26 - In Search of Cascades

Wednesday 23 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 27 - Lac de Vouglans and Longchaumois

Thursday 24 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 28 - St Claude to Louvemont

Friday 25 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 29 - Around Lac du Der

Saturday 26 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 30 - Louvemont to Montreuil (Full Circle)

Sunday 27 July 2014 - Summer Holiday - Day 31 - Montreuil-sur-Mer to Timperley

Happy Days!


Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Moston Brook


Today I had an opportunity to rummage around in the vicinity of Moston Brook, which as far as I can see from my map is a stream that runs through Moston and perhaps empties into the River Irk, which together with the Irwell and the Medlock is one of three rivers that empty via the Mersey, aided by the Manchester Ship Canal, into the Irish Sea.

Pictured above is the point at which I lost the will to follow the brook, as I didn’t have a torch!

The area is described on the NEPHRA* website as follows:

“Moston Brook has natural beauty and historical significance, and in the past helped power the Industrial Revolution. The valley winds itself through several wards including Moston, Chadderton and Failsworth, and the  Rochdale canal also runs through it, from Morrisons in Chadderton to Tesco’s in Failsworth. Nowadays (2011), it’s badly neglected and undervalued. Consequently, it's only popular with dog walkers, fly tippers and off road bikers!”

Since then some improvements have been made, and with the encouragement, funding and enthusiasm of local people and organisations, the area is slowly being recovered from its neglected state.

Here’s a map of the area, the tunnel being shown at the red icon. Paths are marked as green dashes and small black dashes. If you live close by, pop over for a stroll, the autumn colours are pretty at present. I’ll be back there next week.


*What does NEPHRA mean?. It surprises many, to discover the name was just made up  in a hurry, from the initials of some local streets!
N Northfield Road
E Elder Grove
P Parkfield Road North
H Hollingworth Avenue
R Residents
A association

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Sunday 19 October 2014 – Strines Sunday with MMB


I pay the subscription, so I should join the Manchester Mountain Bikers at least once every year!

Today I went along to Strines station, near Marple, for a ‘diesel-paced’ ride with Duncan, Steven, Glyn, Adam, Kevin, Darrell, Stuart and Simon.


‘Meet at 9am, ready to ride 9.15’ was spot on and gave me a lie in as Strines is only a 30 minute drive from Timperley. We were soon on our way, gradually ascending a series of hills that took us slowly towards Mellor. The pace was, well, diesel rather than turbo diesel – about the same as last Sunday’s pace, but with more stops to regroup.


A succession of good tracks and minor roads led to a good track heading east past Robin Hood’s Picking Rods. Well, it was an easy path, but best not to put your feet down when passing through the slurry pictured below.


The track rose gently to a high point of the ride – Cown Edge. Here’s Adam arriving…


…for a pause for sustenance, and a rare occasion when cake wasn’t available (due to my very busy day yesterday).


There were good views towards Kinder Scout.


It’s a mildly technical descent to the Pennine Bridleway. I was slowest, having taken suspensionless Shogun on this ride. Others went so fast over the rocks that a tyre exploded!


Here’s the group at the Pennine Bridleway, where some sort of ‘horse event’ was taking place.


We passed a number of horse riders and walkers today, and as usual when I’m with the MMB riders, I was impressed by the level of courtesy shown by the cyclists. It’s great to go out with such a friendly, supportive and courteous group.

After the short pull out of Rowarth, it’s an easy return to Strines via Castle Edge Road, from where this view towards Hayfield and Kinder can be enjoyed before the descent to the Fox Inn (sadly not yet open today) and the steep rocky final descent to Strines, where all the suspension bikes flew ahead, leaving Duncan to check that my more circumspect descent was achieved without losing too many fillings.


Here’s the route – a very good one with no need to push at any point -  20.6km, 500 metres ascent, taking us 2.2 hours. Similar terrain to last week’s CMBM, at a similar pace but with more pauses, and about half the distance and time.



Friday, 17 October 2014

Thursday 16 October 2014 – Bury to Holcombe Brook


Back to the on-line diary. I’m regretting having attempted the last posting. It was a mistake on my part.

Today Sue and I had the pleasure of a morning walk with some of East Lancs LDWA’s jovial ‘Plodders’. A dull day until lunchtime, apart from the company, and by the time the sun came out we were on our way home. Never mind.

Luckily, the tram from Timperley to Bury didn’t on this occasion veer off in the direction of Rochdale, though the driver did look a bit nervous as we passed the turning to Monsall.

Our Metrolink rendezvous at the Bury terminus went smoothly, and six of us set off through Bury and across the River Irwell to Higher Woodhill Road, which leads to Burrs Country Park.

Shortly before the park, on the left, is Calrows Farmhouse.


It’s a building ‘listed’ for its special architectural or historic interest, and the English Heritage website describes the building here.

It describes architectural features, including the date moulding on a carved panel - "Standley/P/LM/1710/Derby" – but it’s reckoned to be older than 1710 in part (and later in other parts). C17 coins are said to have been found under the floor of the house.

We continued into the park, pausing for a shortbread fuelled cuppa and the traditional group picture (above), as well as a framed photo.


The park covers quite a large area, the mill chimney being visible from some way off.


School kids were enjoying playing with kayaks on the warm day, and we passed this giant plumber trap. We watched aghast as Reg flicked the control that sent the plumber spiralling into the sky, finally plummeting head first down the mill chimney, never to be seen again. (Not on this walk anyway, though he probably did escape.)


By now we were on the Irwell Sculpture Trail. There is a series of information boards on the various industrial artefacts in the Country Park, and on some of the seventy or so sculptures, such as the 1997 sculpture by Julie Edwards, ‘Stone Cycle’, comprising a series of large stones recycled from a dismantled bridge in Bury.


After bimbling around the Country Park for some time, we eventually moved on along the banks of the Irwell to this dramatic weir that the children use for honing their kayaking skills. Someone related the tale of how they watched some poor youth get the nose of her kayak stuck at the bottom of the weir, leaving her in a cold shower for a few minutes whilst a teacher tried to free the stricken vessel.


Beyond the weir, the path carries on pleasantly beside the river before sidling under a railway bridge and climbing gently to Bank Top Farm. The farm looks more like an ornamental garden than a working farm, although some sheep were in evidence. There’s a pond with more sculptures, a moorhen rooting through the undergrowth, and a black stag peering through the hedge at some herons.


High above the river and railway, the path weaves beside fields and through woodland to emerge at Summerseat’s cricket pitch, where David used to heave a lump of willow (I think that’s what he said, anyway). The empty bench confirms the lack of ‘play’, but the autumn colours are coming into ‘play’ hereabouts.


Beyond Brooksbottoms an ancient cobbled way leads up to a left turn, where the railway enters a tunnel and the good path to Ramsbottom leads on by way of a continuation of the Irwell Sculpture Trail, which actually goes all the way from Salford Quays to Bacup and could be utilised for a series of short walks along an excellent route. Or even for an energetic 33 miles in a day blast!

But we turned left, through the greenery of Woodhey’s woods.


After a while a footbridge was reached. I crossed this by mistake the last time I was here, but today the correct turn to the right was made, up beside the left bank of Holcombe Brook, past man made weirs and knobbly trees in an area that must once have been filled with mills for the cotton industry.


Our rendezvous with Christine and Maureen in the Hare & Hounds at Holcombe Brook was thwarted by a refurbishment project. I should have checked their Facebook page before setting off! So the two wives had to slum it on the pavement outside the pub whilst waiting for us to appear from our leisurely plod.

The pub re-opens with a beer festival on 23 October. We couldn’t wait that long, so we all trooped off to nearby Summerseat Garden Centre for an excellent, if non-alcoholic, lunch.

This was a delightful stroll, in the best of company, along a very pleasant route. Thanks to everyone for turning up, and it was great that Christine and Maureen could join us for lunch (not a common scenario for an LDWA outing).

We walked just under 9 km (5.5 miles), with a modest 150 metres of ascent, taking less than two and a half hours. Excellent!


Thanks to Peter and Christine for the lift back to Radcliffe Metro station, and I trust everyone else got home safely, satisfactorily refreshed, and far from exhausted.

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Postcard from Timperley shortlisted for The Great Outdoors ‘Outdoor Blogger of the Year’ Award


[Click here to vote, if you want to skip the blurb.]

I’ve attended the last couple of award ceremonies, representing the Bridge of Gaur Guest House near Rannoch, and Alpenstock – my local gear supplier. I’d nominated both of them, but this year the nomination period passed me by and with neither of those fine establishments being shortlisted I didn’t expect to be involved in any way.

Nevertheless, I’m on a TGO mailing list and recently clicked the link to cast my votes. I was somewhat surprised to see my own blog listed in a new category for this year. Thanks go to whoever nominated me – I feel honoured to be shortlisted, though I’m not sure whether many folk will recognise ‘Postcard from Timperley’ from the code name above.

‘Postcard from Timperley’ thus gained an unexpected seventh birthday present. It’s really an on-line diary, not exclusively an ‘Outdoors’ blog, but out of over 2000 posts to date nearly half to have the ‘Walks’ label, and ‘Bike rides’ and ‘Skiing’ account for quite a few more. The original purpose was to keep in touch with friends and family whilst on a trip to New Zealand in early 2008. Sue and I enjoyed doing that, and I decided to continue with it until I got fed up. I still enjoy it, albeit I feel some entries are becoming a little repetitive.

Highlights, in my opinion, are entries such as the ‘Italian Border Route’ – a 58 day backpacking trip to the Alps, and various TGO Challenges including this well indexed record of our 2009 Challenge. More recently I’ve failed in my bid to properly index trip reports, and I apologise for that – some housekeeping is required. Perhaps starting with this summer’s trip to the Dolomites, and continuing with last year’s Pyrenean Adventure, which with Humphrey Weightman’s assistance was converted into a book with very little editing.

I am familiar with three of the other shortlisted blogs, and have now had a quick look at the others. Here’s my take on them, albeit very superficial.

Alan Sloman’s big walk – I’m a long-term follower of Alan, who writes with passion, originally about a Lands End to John O’Groats walk in 2007 and subsequently concentrating on TGO Challenge walks and Alan’s impassioned opposition to wind farms.

Alastair Humphreys – a new one to me, Alastair is a professional adventurer, author and motivational speaker who has written around 1500 postings since 2001.

Backpacking Bongos – James Boulter’s blog records a wide range of wilderness trips alone, in his campervan, or with his dog. I’ve followed James for a while and enjoy his postings.

Dean Read – another new one for me, Dean appears to be based in the Peak District and his activities include blog postings starting in 2006. He uses video clips and is a keen mountain biker and photographer.

Keith Foskett – a professional long-distance walker, writer and blogger. You expect ‘Postcard from Timperley’ to compete with this?

Terry Abraham – a film maker who posts blog entries as he goes about his film making activities. I have his excellent ‘Cairngorms in Winter’ film made with Chris Townsend. Terry has recently released another film – ‘Life of a Mountain: Scafell Pike’ to similar acclaim, and he has just finished another film ‘Backpacking in the Lake District with Chris Townsend’ that will no doubt receive similar accolades.

The Girl Outdoors - a blog edited by Sian Anna Lewis ‘a journalist obsessed with adventure’. I notice that one of her recent postings is an interview with Alastair Humphreys, who seems to be popping up everywhere as I compose this entry.

Tony Hobbs - has only made two blog postings this year, though I understand he also posts videos elsewhere, and these may be the reason for his shortlisting.

Two Blondes Walking is an engaging record of two anonymous blondes’ antics with the wildlife of Dartmoor, Duke of Edinburgh Award children, and life in general. It’s new to me, but I’ll now be following these blondes’ short, often quirky, daily postings.

Leaving Tony Hobbs aside, I note that I’m the only person on the shortlist who doesn’t ‘Twitter’ (I have no plans to do that). Some of the blogs include advertisements that I find distracting, but that shouldn’t affect one’s overall opinion of them. Very few of those shortlisted attempt to keep their on-line records of their trips up to date on a daily basis whilst on those trips. That’s left to amateurs like me, Conrad and Gayle. It can be quite hard, but not ‘work’!

I note that four of those shortlisted, (Alastair, Keith, Terry and Tony) have also been shortlisted as ‘Outdoor Personality of the Year’ and Alastair has a third throw of the dice as one of his books has been shortlisted in the ‘Outdoor Book of the Year’ category.

It’s a small world…

I’ll let you know who wins in due course. In the meantime you can vote here, or by clicking the temporary link on the sidebar.

Thanks for reading my postings, especially during my/our longer trips when the interaction with commenters is appreciated, whether or not you choose to vote for the ‘Postcard’.

Note: following some comments and emails concerning my take on advertising on some of the shortlisted blogs, and having been accused of “trying to bash your opposition”, I have amended the above text to exclude some observations regarding advertising, and I’ve replaced the offending comments (below) with what I hope is something conciliatory. I certainly have no intention of “bashing” anyone – I just wanted to provide a brief overview with links to those shortlisted. In fact I’ve tried to be appreciative of all the blogs, so far as I can be, so I apologise to anyone who has misinterpreted my observations.

Monday, 13 October 2014

Sunday 12 October 2014 – The Calderdale Mountain Bike Marathon


Yes, it’s that time of year. The picture above shows Paul, Robert and Greg after the finish, and here’s Robert at the start, a foggy 50 metres down the road from Paul, Greg and me.


Here are Paul and Greg, first timers on this event – starting with me from right at the back of the 320 strong field. Everyone was very jolly at this end of the field.


We left Robert to shoot off and finish in under 3 hours, whilst the rest of us took it easy. We had to at the start, as 320 people don’t fit very well onto the narrow lanes, especially when there’s a pile-up going up a steep hill because of so many people dismounting to push.

The field slowly spread out, and I was able to enjoy the fast descent to Mytholmroyd – it’s a bit technical but much easier than in the past – with lots of slower descenders allowing me to pass them.

Soon after that descent, the first checkpoint is reached, near Hebden Bridge, and here Greg is faced with the dilemma of choosing between a drink (from the left) or cake (from the right). I think he managed both, but narrowly avoided causing another pile up!


The conditions were dry, and once the fog had lifted it was sunny. Some time before this checkpoint at Grain Water Bridge, Greg’s exertions from the previous day caught up with him, slowing our progress from here. But not to worry, it was a lovely day to be out on the bikes.


The support was immaculate, as ever, even down to a first aider running up onto Midgley Moor to help a stricken participant. Paul had been just behind him when he fell – so he copped the job of looking after the guy until he’d recovered sufficiently to carry on.

Meanwhile I’d enjoyed the moor in easier conditions than usual and waited at a hairpin bend (pictured below) for Paul, who had been waiting higher up for Greg, who apparently took a few dives himself. They turned up after about 15 minutes, and we managed to get to the end without any further incidents (no cramp for me for a change, probably thanks to the break). We even managed to cycle all the way up the steep final hill without dismounting, encouraged by Robert, who having finished nearly an hour ahead of us, had come back down the hill to Luddenden Foot to meet us.


Having reached the finish, Greg relaxed immediately into what I’ll describe as a ‘Lazy Moment’.


He soon recovered whilst the rest of us went off to stash the bikes, before enjoying a beer in the sun outside the Church Stile Inn. Here we are before that, after enjoying tea and chilli kindly provided by the organisers, and having collected our t-shirts and certificates.


The support is amazing for the modest entry fee of £15, especially as it’s a fund raising event for a local scout group. A big vote of thanks to the organisers.

Here’s the route - 42.5 km (27 miles), 1000 metres ascent, 2-6 hours. (We took rather less than 4 hours, with Robert an hour ahead of us.)


This is the seventh time I’ve cycled in this event since starting ‘Postcard from Timperley’, hence the fairly brief report.

The other reports can be found here, the route description and results summary are here, and there’s a slideshow here (click on the first image and then click ‘slideshow’), mainly pictures of folk who would have finished in three and a half to four hours, descending from Midgley Moor at the point where I was waiting for Paul and Greg.

The CMBM website is here, with this year’s results here. I’ve just put 11 October 2015 in the diary…

Saturday, 11 October 2014

Friday 10 October 2014 – The Big Macc Ramble (A Bike Ride)


I’ve reported on this route and variations to it before – here – so whilst there’s a map below, no detailed description beyond that given is warranted.

I’d been planning a visit to the Cat and Fiddle for some time, the bike ride being a training ride for the Calderdale Mountain Bike Marathon (CMBM). As that takes place tomorrow, I suspect this Big Macc Ramble will have tired me out more than it got me fit!

The day was warm, with sunny periods. I encountered just a handful of pedestrians on the quiet paths. A long ascent to Macclesfield Forest is followed by a gentle descent to the chapel, where I enjoyed some tea and a sandwich on a familiar and much loved bench before tackling the technical descent to Bottom-of-the-Oven – not so easy on the old steel bike that I traditionally take on the CMBM.

Here are views to the Stanley Arms, and to the Cat and Fiddle, from Bottom-of-the-Oven.


It’s a long haul up the road to the tea rooms, especially for one whose cycling these days is mainly along canal towpaths. Above the tea rooms I paused to regain my breath and take snaps towards Shutlingsloe and back to Macclesfield Forest, where my route along Charity Lane follows the edge of the forest on the horizon.


After a productive meeting with Adam, the Cat and Fiddle’s chef, during which the menu for our Christmas lunch on 14 December was finalised – details will be available here shortly – I continued on along Danebower Hollow.


After a short road section, there’s a lovely descent to Cumberland Clough and a final stream crossing over Cumberland Brook after negotiating some increasingly sized rocks.


Then it’s back up to Macc Forest, Nessit Hill, and the final exhilarating descent at over 30 mph on the swooping gravel track above Trentabank. Brilliant!

Here’s today’s route, described basically here, but note that at the end, beyond Nessit Hill, a designated cycle trail now leads steeply and directly to the road junction near Trentabank, slightly shortening the route to 14.2 miles with about 700 metres ascent - allow 2-3 hours.