November and it's turning cold

Sunday November 25th. Out on a Lymm. 18 miles. Leader: Dave and Alma Walsh.


The leaders were pleasantly surprised that 21 walkers had gathered at Lymm Dam car park as several of the regulars were on the Real Ale Ramble weekend & had received apologies from others that they would not be attending. Maybe it was the promise of a dry day or an easy, flat walk in the Cheshire countryside.

Anyway after a brief description of the walk to come & a group photo we set off along the Eastern edge of the Dam surprising a couple of fishermen not used to having so many people file past in one group.
Tranquil Lymm Dam constructed 1824 is one of the most popular visitor attractions in the whole of the borough attracting vast numbers of nature lovers, joggers & dog walkers.

From the Southern end of the dam we followed farmers fields before crossing the M56 Motorway. Further fields & a quiet lane led us to our morning break stop at High Legh Garden Centre which is very popular on a Sunday. A couple of concrete blocks & old telegraph poles provided adequate seating.

From there we passed the village of High Legh, over the golf course & re crossed the M56. Further fields led us to Little Bollington, past the curiously named Swan with Two Nicks pub, over the River Bollin to our lunch stop at Dunham Massey. Dunham Massey was a regionally important place during the medieval period & the seat of the Massey barons. It has a fine Georgian mansion & is a popular tourist attraction. Not as many deer sighted today as on the recce but we did spot two albino deer.

After leaving Dunham Massey park we headed north & dropped onto the Trans Pennine Trail & headed West. Heading East were two Santas on a tandem, followed by many more Santas of varying sizes cycling in the same direction, there was plenty of Ho Ho Ho greetings. We were well outnumbered.

We left the trail & walked through the village of Dunham Woodhouses, over fields before joining the canal which we followed back to Lymm.

We walked through the village & along the Bongs (A medieval dialect word meaning wooded banks) back to the car park. A nice early finish at 3.30pm.

Thanks to all who attended, Dave & Alma


Photos below by Dave.

Photos below by Hilary


Wednesday November 21st. Clitheroe 60K Part 1. 13 miles. Leader: Roger Jackson.


Met in the Park and Ride car park, behind the Train Station, at 10 am. Twenty four people and one dog (M.T.M) set off  through the rain in the direction of the cloud covered Pendle Hill. Once out of town we continued through a series of fields, past the old Clitheroe Grammar School playing fields, in the general direction of the 'Nick of Pendle'. Around this time the weather started to clear, allowing us a good view of the hill ahead and Clitheroe in the distance behind.  Over another couple of fields and we arrived at the Wellsprings ( just as the Café opened ) for our morning break.

From here we joined the main ridge, heading gradually towards the summit looking very impressive under a fine covering of snow, and giving us a good view of Barley directly below. Mostly now downhill we headed towards Downham, stopping part way down for our lunch stop. 
After lunch on to Downham, then crossing a series of fields to reach the picturesque village of Worston.  We then crossed the busy Clitheroe bypass following a path along the former Salthill quarry to arrive back to Clitheroe, passing through the Cricket Club on our way back to our starting point at the station. In time for a quick pint at the Station Inn.


Walk distance was 13 miles and around 1900 ft ascent , walk time 6 hrs.





Sunday November 11th. HOW (Hollingworth Ogden Walsden) 20 miles. Leader: Steve Clark


Meet and start from the Visitor Centre, Hollingworth at 9am, with some folk opting to park on the road.  15 of us are on the walk (and one dog – Stripe), with Sue leaving us by arrangement at lunch to make her own way home from Summit  It’s cool in the car park and a rain shower has us kitting up for wet weather.  This blows over initially.  So head off SE skirting Hollingworth Lake to go under the M62.  From here we climb up and over the watershed between reservoirs to drop down to Ogden reservoir.  The loos were open and allowed a civilized stop for some.


We start to climb, now travelling parallel with the M62 towards Windy Hill.  The weather deteriorates as we climb up and by now it is quite wet.  A quick coffee stop is taken.  We pause at 11am and two minutes silence is observed, remembering the official end of the First World War 100 years ago. 


Over to the Pennine Way and to the trig on Blackstone Edge in cloud.  The clouds begin to lift and we make our way past the White House, still following the Pennine Way.  Appropriately we pass the Rain stanza stone before reaching Warland reservoir.  We took shelter here behind the dam wall for a lunch stop. 


On to Walsden and descend to cross the Littleborough to Todmorden road.  Climb up into the Ramsden Wood area and some rough country side.  Round a small reservoir and under electricity pylons.  Take an afternoon pit stop on some benches (kindly provided by somebody) above the valley.  We then proceeded along the edge of the Summit Gorge before dropping down to the Rochdale canal at Summit.  Following the canal and off at lock 48 to walk through Ealees Valley and back to the Visitor Centre car park, finishing the walk soon after 4pm and with daylight to spare. 


Walk distance was 20 miles and around 3,000’ of ascent recorded on my GPS.






Click on the link to see Steve's photos of the day.


Wednesday November 7th. Footpath Obscura. 14 miles. Leader: Gerald Dentith.


Footpath Obscura was the name of the walk and Gerald was determined to give good value to this title. 22 walkers and 3 dogs gathered just outside Holcombe Brook to go on a magical mystery tour of some very obscure footpaths indeed!

Leaving the car park we went up and down the slopes of Holcombe Hill a couple of times to then start making our way south, eventually reaching Nuttall Park in Ramsbottom where a stop was made for morning coffee. We may be in November and a lot of leaves have fallen but there are still a  lot left and today we were treated to some lovely colourful views of the area.

After break we walked back towards Holcombe and part way up one of the steepest hill bike climbs in the world. We didn't break the record and contoured off to follow the valley up towards Irwell Vale. There was a good falling of rain and care had to be taken on some of the paths and stiles which were extremely slippery.

At Strongsrty we turned onto a path that followed the Irwell valley and gave us two challenging ravine crossings. After hacking through vegetation near the end there was a "footpath closed " sign! It's been there years apparently.... Lunch was at the specially opened café at the Irwell Vale Church where tea, coffee and scones were consumed.

We headed up and crossed Lumb Viaduct and came to the moor road leading up to Robin Hood's well on the slopes of Holcombe Hill. The weather closed in again and Gerald omitted one loop of the route but we ventured off the main track and eventually came back to it near the well. There were some fine Lancashire Lonk sheep in a field, the ones that are on the East Lancs badge.

Further loops of the hillside were followed but with the rain falling and the light dimming, some of us cut off early and walked along the road to the car park.

I don't think we were ever more than about three miles from this but we certainly found some different footpaths. It just goes to show that they are there if you look. Thank you Gerald for leading us.