Martin in Gatineau Park

Martin in Gatineau Park

Thursday, 23 April 2009

Tuesday 21 April 2009 - An Evening Circuit from Danebridge

Despite the lovely evening, Sue and I didn't think we'd have any company today as this walk was only planned a few days ago.  But on reaching The Ship at 7.15 pm we found Andrew in his traditional pose on such occasions: relaxing with a glass of ale...

2102ship

After further refreshment we were about to set off when Sheila, Adie and Ros appeared.  Now we were six, and a jolly evening ensued.

Our first objective was Hanging Stone.  I wrote about its plaques some time ago, here.

2103hstone

Sue dashed to the top for a view of the setting sun.

2104sue

Others soon joined her.

2106sunnyview

For this view:

2105sunset

Meanwhile Shutlingsloe, 'Matterhorn of the Cheshire', showed why it is so nicknamed.

2107shutlingsloe

Our merry band proceeded in deepening gloom to the dark fissure of Lud's Church, before dropping down to the Dane Valley for the dark walk back to The Ship. 

It was soon evident that the woods are home to lots of owls that remain silent during our normal daytime visits to these parts.  Sheila once named these nocturnal excursions 'pitch black' walks.  Torches have rarely been needed in recent months as the winter dates are set to coincide with a fullish moon.  But tonight there was no moon and we were away from any suburban light pollution.  So it was indeed 'pitch black'. 

It was enjoyable, being dry underfoot, and progress was aided at times by a couple of torches.

Here's our route - 8 km, 350 metres of ascent, taking a bit more than 2 hours - an excellent little excursion.

2101route

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