Sunday, 8th February 2015

Walk: Upper Barden Reservoir, Lower Barden Reservoir, Bolton Abbey Priory, Middle Hare Head
Start Point: Car park at roadside Grid Reference: SE 037 553
Distance: 15 miles Ascent: 1,800 feet
Time: 6.5 hours
Weather: Cold and sunny

As we all set off from home in the thick mist and fog, none of us could have anticipated the beautiful weather conditions we were to have. With bright blue sky and sunshine most of the day the below zero temperatures we had driven through were soon forgotten as we set off walking.

11 of us turned up which included two new walkers to the group, Claire - giving Ramblers a try and Beverley from Bridlington. It was a pleasure to have them join us. Hopefully we will see them both again one day!

We followed a well-defined footpath across Barden Moor to Upper Barden Reservoir where we stopped for 11’s. From here we climbed up to Gill Beck Head where we left the path to cut across to a prominent boundary stone high on the horizon. From here there were fantastic views across the moors in all directions.

It was now mainly downhill as we set off for Strid Wood via Lower Barden Reservoir. We had lunch here before moving on to Bolton Abbey Priory. After a brief look around the Priory we set off on our climb over Middle Hare Head back to our cars at the car park.

A big welcome to Claire and Beverly

We set off following a well-defined track across the moor

Looking down to Lower Barden Reservoir

A path junction made for a good group shot

We dropped down to Upper Barden Reservoir

We stopped for our 11's at Gill Beck Head . . .

which Tony clearly enjoyed!

Fortunately the Gill Beck which we were to ford later was running low

From Gill Beck Head the shooting lodge stood out clearly on the horizon

Time for another group shot at the boundary stone

As we crossed Long Band Flat Earl Seat could be clearly seen in the distance

We followed the path down to Lower Barden Reservoir

Looking up Barden Beck Valley from the reservoir crossing

To evryone's relief we reach the end of the only real boggy stretch: Come on Pat you sre almost there!

We entered the ancient woodland of Strid Wood . . .

a perfect lunch stop

The snowdrops were out in force - Spring will be here soon!

Looking down to Barden Tower from the very spot Turner chose to paint from

Bolton Abbey Priory eventually came into view

as we climbed up the road the mist suddeny cam over

Looking down onto the old ruin (Tony) with the Priory in the distance!

The mist quickly cleared

A quick look inside the ruin

Leaving Bolton Abbey behind we set off back to the car park

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