Sunday, 15 April 2012 – 12.4 miles approx
We parked off the road near Hebden Bridge, walking over the Rochdale Canal and up a good track through woods, past a farm, and onto the moorland. We saw some rather striking birds on the fence which I thought could be wheatears, and, when I looked them up at home, found out I was right.
Arriving at Stoodley Pike memorial, we found you can go up the staircase inside to get a good view of the surrounding hills and villages.
The route was then fairly flat and straightforward across the moor, some parts slabbed, to get to Langfield common and the end of Warland reservoir where we had turned round last time.
It was a lovely bright clear day, warm in the sheltered sunshine, but pretty cold when exposed. It was much colder walking back to the car than it had been on the first leg.We sat and had a drink by the side of the canal, with some very ‘lived in’ narrow boats alongside.
We continued the Pennine Way on the other side of the main road, heading up a very steep, narrow path between walls and houses. I think we were both not looking forward to going back down!
We took the ‘official’ route here, rather than the Wainwright altenative route – couldn’t see on the map what this one did – and passed a small graveyard clinging to the hillside – very Victorian and atmospheric.
It then hailed on us, rather hard, but it passed off within a few minutes! We went through a field where there was clay pigeon shooting going on – rather disconcerting! – but they stopped when they saw us! Even better, we saw this bench – look closely! Shortly after, we came across one of those places that makes the walk worthwhile – Colden Clough. A small river in a deep valley, with an old stone bridge across. A short walk from there took us to the main road at Colden, and a good parking place for the next leg.
Going back, that little path wasn’t quite as steep and hard-on-the-knees as we had feared!