My old friend from our days at UMIST, Nick, currently in charge of Nike’s hat manufacturing in Taipei, is over for a few days. So today Sue took a day off and the three of us recced a Christmas walk that neither Sue nor Nick can come on. It proved to be a lovely day, the mist clearing from The Roaches as we arrived at the parking place near Upper Hulme. We set off with a gaggle of young school kids who were being taught how to climb. They were having a great time – how much better than being forced to play rugby like I was at their age! We soon left them after passing the Don Whillans Memorial Hut. Our morning route was over the Roaches to Roach End, and on to The Ship at Wincle via lovely woodland, Lud’s Church (where today’s photo was taken), and the beautiful Dane Valley - simply wonderful. The ‘sandwiches’ at The Ship range from £4.50 to £7.50 – which some may consider a little pricey. But these efforts come with a knife and fork, chips and salad, and fine real ale to wash down the ‘fresh cut granary bloomer bread’. Superb.
So after a happy hour in the pub (actually, we should have sat outside on this day fit for t-shirts and shorts) we ambled off up to Hanging Stone, which on our evening walks here we usually by-pass. But today we ascended the 40 metres up to the stone, and its memorials, and admired the views towards the Roaches and down to Tittesworth Reservoir. Then a lower, level afternoon route took us easily to Clough Head. But the path through the farm at Buxton Brow was inundated with slurry, so ‘proceed with care’ was the order of the day. There was a way around it; boots remained pristine, and after a tea break we found the nice path leading to Greenhouse. Our return to the car from here was blighted by an overgrown path that was impossible to follow. Clearly marked by a sign, it disappeared into a thicket of bramble and nettles. Thanks to Sue’s pioneering exploits we got through to the road, but not by the correct route.
The Christmas walk will take a different line!