Sunday, 17th January 2010

   

            

 

Walk: Rochdale Canal, Pennine Way, Blackstone Edge, Windy Hill, Hollingworth Lake
Start Point: Hollingworth Lake Grid Reference: SD 940 153
Distance: 13.8 miles Ascent: 2,250 feet
Time: 6.75 hrs    
Weather: A cloudy but dry day with a cold North Westerly Breeze.
Comments: A group of ten walkers attended for this strenuous walk. Ice on the canal towpath made this “easy” stretch treacherous. With most of the paths still covered in snow or slush lots of tricky footwork was required, particularly on the descent from Windy Hill where drifts in many places were knee deep. Despite the hard going a good day’s walk was the general verdict of the group.

Scroll down to see photos of the walk

Ray checks that we are all ready at Hollingworth Lake Visitor Centre car park

 

As we set out we find that there is still a lot of snow and ice around . . .

 

and beside the icy waters of the Rochdale Canal . . .

 

walking along the towpath is treacherous

 

I don't think any boats will be using these locks today . . .

 

even though there are some patches of ice free water

 

West Summit Lock number 37 . . .

 

the highest point on the canal

 

Time for elevenses as we climb up onto the moors

 

An ice covered Warland Reservoir

 

I'm glad we don't need to cross the footbridge

 

Some interesting rock formations . . .

 

at Light Hazzles Edge . . .

 

where there are some deep snow drifts

 

Looks like an old packhorse bridge . . .

 

which Kath tries out

 

Compacted snow on . . .

 

Castle Drain . . .

 

and snow drifts on the footpath beside Blackstone Edge Reservoir

 

Ray leads the group straight past The White House . . .

 

but Phil has other ideas . . .

 

which he resists after encouragement to continue the walk!

 

Is this a precursor . . .

 

to our waymarkers?

 

More snow to navigate - will it ever end?

 

The mist closes in as we reach . . .

 

Blackstone Edge - I don't think we'll worry about getting to the trig point . . .

 

but it's a good spot . . .

 

to stop for lunch

 

I wonder if Ray has ordered the taxi to meet us at the motorway?

 

No, he's just found a bridge for us to cross . . .

 

before finding more deep snow - pity he didn't bring a sledge!

 

It looks like the sun is trying to break through . . .

 

to provide some light and shade to the snow . . .

 

as the group disappears around the corner

 

Virgin snow adorns the banks . . .

 

and a blue sky completes the picture

 

Hollingworth Lake finally comes into view - on the other side of the motorway

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