Sunday, 9th March 2014

Walk: Pennine Way, White Holme Reservoir, Cloven Stone, Langfield Common
Start Point: White House Pub car park Grid Reference: SD 969 179
Distance: 9.2 miles Ascent: 300 feet
Time: 5.25 hours
Weather: A bright sunny start, with a cool breeze, but soon warm and bright tghroughout the walk
Comments: 17 walkers set out from The White House Pub car park, all were anticipating the reported weather change to bright sunshine, unlike previous month's wet and windy conditions, we were not disappointed. As we had driven to a fairly high altitude, the 300ft ascent identified became apparent, we were already up there! The walk began on a stretch of the Pennine Way, which here runs Northwards from Blackstone Edge. What becomes evident is that this is a precious environment - reservoir land used to feed the Rochdale Canal in the valley below, as well as the people of Rochdale. This walk was presented to show an elevated view of things, and far reaching views, regardless of whether you view it as the roof of Lancashire or Yorkshire. As the track leads on it reaches a conspicuous pile of gritstone outcrops, into the base of which a poem ‘RAIN’, by Simon Armitage has been carved, and printed copies were distributed amongst the walkers. We continued on out past White Holme reservoir over the Dam on the North Eastern side to reach a narrow path leading out onto the moor. Just in time to take the coffee break, an array of rock profiles allowed you to choose your seat profile to either sit and take the view across Turvin Clough, or lay back and leisurely glance the clear Blue Skies. Onward to follow the narrow pathway we eventually turned and Stoodley Pike eased into view, where we reached Cloven Stone. A little way further we stumbled on the remains of a small cottage, fireplace and stone stairway still evident, unfortunately no roof. We continued on to another area of those rock profiles ready made for seating and just the right spot for lunch. After lunch we headed out towards Langfield Common, where we met the Pennine Way again. Turning for home we passed part of the Todmorden Centenary Way, easy walking.
We eventually returned to retrace part of the outward route and a tea stop at the poem. A short walk back to base ended the walk.
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