Sue and I have been attending (and performing at) Stockport Walking & Outdoor Group’s evening talks for several years. From May to August, they abandon Hazel Grove Civic Centre in favour of local meadows for their Wednesday evening entertainment. Tonight was my first visit to one of these outings, which are somewhat better attended than our own evening walks.
Simone was leading her first walk. We started by filling the car park at the Arden Arms but not going inside! Then we left the pavement beside Stockport Road, in favour of a narrow path beside the River Tame. Simone skilfully led us towards a deep bog that she skipped across without revealing the ‘dry’ route.
A traffic jam ensued. Thirty lost souls blinded by the sun.
As folk slowly fumbled their way through the undergrowth, a tree decided to wreak havoc with Howard’s spectacles. It snatched them from his nose and flung them away. It took ages to find them!
Soon we escaped from the bog and found ourselves in a spacious meadow full of docile horses. It was a lovely warm, sunny evening.
On reaching Reddish Vale Country Park, we admired this proud mother with her babies, and the mosaic outside the Visitor Centre.
The lake and viaduct shone brightly in the late sun.
We met someone who had felt he was walking on a moving carpet. For us, we seemed to be walking on bits of moving debris. Why was this stuff moving? It turned out to be vast numbers of these little creatures.
From the Visitor Centre we headed up to Hyde Hall along the Trans Pennine Trail, then back to our outward route and along the road to the pub, which had stayed open especially for us, not that it was particularly late!
We enjoyed some of Robbie’s Best, whilst admiring a lovely Stockport sunset.
A most pleasurable first (second for Sue) evening outing with SWOG, with a special thanks to Simone and Howard for providing the entertainment.
Our route is shown below – 7 km, 70 metres ascent, 1 hour 45 minutes. Simple.