Rowarth Ramble (06/04/2014)

Dave Gosling was due to lead this walk. Now suffering from Achilles tendon problems (and also currently in Cape Town, South Africa) he was unable to do so. Walks must go on so Quentin Blagg was nominated as stand in leader.  Quentin / Duncan / Steve (Sth M/c member but not been with us for 12 months) / Janet and husband Richard/ Dave Wright / Christine Telford. All 4 sth M/c members.
Quentin soon realised a fault in Dave's walk plans, namely; the start point. This was to be the Little Mills public house at Rowarth. Quentin realised that we would be unable to use the pub car park as it was not planned to use the pub. A better spot would be the public car park at Rowarth. This is up a side road so Quentin had come armed with an 'LDWA' sign post. This was hammererd in with a great deal of sweating and cursing until eventually it stood upright. Now at the car park and kitting up, Quentin realised that he had forgotten something, the most important thing, Dave's map of the route. He begged a spare map and trusted to his memory (always dodgy). Surprisingly we managed to stick to the route more or less as planned. Back at Rowarth Quentin retrieved the sign (keep the country tidy). What was pinned behind the 'LDWA' sticker, that's right, the route map, there all along. Quentin felt a right pillock (and yes I have his permission to call him that). 
That's me. I had sprained an ankle when out running the previous week. Still, being stupid, I decided to chance it on this walk. Would the ankle hold out? I had come armed with boots. Not a good idea. When I laced up the left boot it pressed on the injured tendons painfully. I would not be able to walk a step in them. I was therefore forced to walk in the shoes that I had travelled in, a pair of clapped out old Solomon trainers, now lacking in either an upper, sole or tread. Annoyingly I have a brand new pair of Solomon's at home. Did they work? Well I did not fall over (somehow) but now (the following morning) I am a wreck again, unable to walk anywhere, in spite of using Bank's and Talisker's medcines to cure the problem.
At our elevenses stop at Coombes Rocks I was well prepared to enlighten everyone about them. Armed with a library copy of 'Rock Rambles in the Peak District', all about local geology, I was able to intone that this is a splendid example of a landslip, one of the finest in the Peak District. Conditions are ideal for a landslip formation. The tough sandstone caps a succession of slates and siltstones that have little strength. The entire sequence dips into the landslip area. Dating by pollen analysis has shown that the landslip was active over 8,000 years ago. Quentin was so enthralled by this that he nearly threw me over the edge. Well he did bore us about the Children's Inn at Rowarth later.
I have done several 'catch up' walks with the Irregulars of late. The Irregulars are fond of their pubs but on these walks the pubs are always shut or closed down. Even the Nags Head at Edale. This walk was like that too. Arriving at Broadbottom we found that the first pub was boarded up, shut for good. A few hundred yards up the road was another pub. Opening time 2pm it said, what! It was 12:15. Do they not want any business! No pub stop then.
Yup it's the Met Office. A 60% chance of light rain every hour of the day they forecast. Light rain seems to be nothing but eventually seeps up through every crevice and seam of your waterproofs until you are soaked. Well it did not happen. We only got two short showers each lasting only a couple of minutes. We did not complain.
Our group included a canine quadruped, GHILLIE, who brought Christine, her human. You have got to keep these humans fit. Very well behaved too (Christine that is). Humans are not very good at making dog stiles, they will have to be taught. It took Christine and Steve to get Ghillie over many of them.
Walk Length              16.9 miles approx.
Ascent                        2,650feet
Time                           7 hours 45 minutes
Participants                Quentin, Duncan, Christine, Janet, ?, ?