Sun 27th Feb, 2005
West Pennine Moors
Present: Iain McCallum, Alan (L) Jones, Chris Thickett, Lorna Marsland, Joe Flynn, Christine Beeston, Dave Wylie
Guests: Kate Sparks, Kate Smith
The dawned bright and frosty with a dusting of snow above 250m. We thought the boggy bits may have been frozen over and so they largely were apart from one very deep hole where the ice just couldn't stand the combined weight of Chris and Iain so they both went in - up to their knees. Having got these antics over it was just plain walking. ALJ met us exactly as planned on the top of Great Hill and before long we were at Tockholes where some of us enjoyed a memorable pint of well-kept Bobbins Bitter while others sampled the café.
By the time we'd reached Darwen Tower things were warming up nicely, so twenty minutes on the sun lounge were indicated in order to explore the merits or otherwise of ASBOs in restraining potential suicides. This was an apt topic as two members were hanging over the tower balcony 10m above . . .
After that, it was just walking: very pleasant with the oranges of the moorland grass and rushes picked out by the winter sun and the usual drabness lifted by the sparkle of snow and ice.
As if you hadn't had enough of slopping round soaking moorlands, here's another test of your Nikwax.
Meet at 9.30am on the wide cobbled road which bears SW towards the Pigeon Tower from the top of the pass on the Belmont - Rivington road. (SD 653 157).
From there we can do variations on the usual circuit which takes in Spitlers Edge, Great Hill, Roddlesworth Woods, the pub at Tockholes for lunch (plenty of seats outside for those so disposed); then via Darwen Tower and any number of possible routes back to Belmont and up t' clough back to Hordern Stoops and the start. 10 - 12 miles so you'll be home for 3, er, tea.
Last time I was up there (at Christmas) the views were from the Langdales to Snowdon so that's probably it for this year . . .