Why did I leave you? I want your love back.
If you are like me, you have a few hobbies. They like life, get in the way. But life finds a way.
After a few years of hitting the Welsh and Lake District mountains, I found myself involved with Football, the good old English game, kickboxing, performing in a band, and brewing beer at home. With the obligatory two jobs thrown in there too. Sadly my dear friend hiking took a back seat.
But as time evolved, a natural desire for the mountains grew ever stronger, and stronger.
So in May 2018, with the weight of the world on my shoulders, my brain spinning with life’s many issues, I decided to declutter the loft. As one does!
Who doesn’t love a good decluttering session? Me more than most I feel!
Can you guess what was in the tote box labeled “Camping gear”?
The old faithful dogs, the Salomon boots I purchased at the age of 19 (Two years ago ;-)), they don’t make boots like these anymore, literally, the weather battered and looking nothing short of damn comfortable old dogs. You know that look, broken in and ready to roll.
They looked up at me like a puppy who hasn’t seen its owner all day (or years, that poor puppy). “Where have you been?”, “I have been here in this tote box waiting to be unleashed, waiting to be knee-deep in a bog. Waiting to scramble up towards the Kinder Plateau and come face to face with the Duke of Devonshire’s gamekeepers”.
It’s not Sunday, April 24th, 1932 but we are ready to do this.
The inspiration for this particular hike is linked below, be careful though. You will want to leave the house and head to the Peak District for the weekend. Like you need an excuse anyway, you’ve been locked up for a year, but you have been warned!
- Bottle of water
- A couple of breakfast bars
- Screenshot of the route
- Post code for the car park
- The old dogs
- Lowe Alpine back pack from the “Enraged” band days
- New York Yankees hat
I am ready for the drive from Manchester to Hayfield. The weather is clear and sunny, yes really, it is clear and sunny.
Time: 5-6 hours
Distance: 8 miles (12.8km
Map: Explorer OL1
Dog friendly: Yes, a few greeted me on this route!
Parking at the Bowden Bridge car park was easy enough and there’s a lovely little pub before the car park called the Sportsman Pub. No pub for me today, as I’m there early (ish) 8 am will do. No dawn raid this time either, more on dawn raids in future posts.
There’s a delightful leafy lane running alongside a river Kinder. There’s a slight incline up to Kinder Reservoir! You may see a lamb or two in the spring. My lungs are blowing and my calves are mooing, I’m no longer the fit 18-year old I once was. But the views open up of the reservoir, kinder plateau ahead, and the initial panting is rewarded. The walk along the water is beautiful and refreshing from the slight incline earlier.
Now we approach William Clough’s path with views of Leygate Head moor to the left and Sandy Heys to your right, you will part towards Sandy Heys at the top of William Clough in due course.
Traversing Sandy Heys is something to savour in great weather, my shoulders are lifted of all issues. Mission Completed already. Breathe in the fresh air and break out some snacks for a very deserved break.
During the first half of the hike, I’d noticed I was sweating a fair bit, especially my lower back. As it turns out, the water bottle I was using was leaking, everywhere. Don’t worry, I had plenty to survive on! And looking back it was quite refreshing in the heat and continued to cool me down as my bag was wet too. I planned it, honest.
Did I see Kinder Downfall? Nope! Such was my ignorance back then and the fabulous weather, I missed it! One to revisit.
Did I head in to Kinder Scout trig point? Nope, What Tweed?! “No Summit trig point Instagram banger selfie here”.
Did I head to Edale Cross and see the Cloughs, Jacobs Ladder, and Edale skyline? Nope, I cut the corner at Cluther Rocks and headed down in between Broad Clough and Kinderlow End.
I was quite happy and content just walking along in the great weather, enjoying being out in the Peak District.
The descent is easy going and you can gaze back and enjoy the route you’ve just walked. Hopefully, your knees will enjoy it more than mine. I like to go from doing no exercise to an 8-mile yomp, you’ll see a theme of this until I learn to be patient in 2021!
I revisit this route on the below video, for a lovely mid-week wild camp on Sandy Heys, even saving a lamb from a bog. Superman pants to the ready.
Where next I say as I drive home, where next?
COMING SOON: WALK UP THAT HILL, DAD!
The story of a fisherman’s goal to walk up a hill.
No puppies were hurt writing this blog.