2016 08 04 Calderdale Way 2

 The Men in Blue


It did stop raining!


We did get views


Six set off from Todmorden heading uphill (where else !!!) to rejoin the Calderdale Way near Hole Bottom . Despite the wet conditions there were at least stunning views above the valley as we headed across fields & tracks to Heptonstall . A steep descent to Midgehole with an equally inevitable steep ascent to the first stop above Pecket Well & views over to Stoodley Pike : some 1900 feet of ascent covered in the opening 8 miles .

Then a lovely level moorland stretch contouring across the hillside for several miles , descending to Wade Bridge & a climb to Upper Saltonstall where waterproofs were dispensed with ; more in hope than expectation but the rain had finally persisted off for the day !

And no we were not at the top , so onwards & upwards with stunning views opening up all around as we finally hit the summit at Hough Gate Head Farm & with that climb out of the way time for a second pit stop . It was here that Les joined us after being in hot pursuit having set off from Hebden Bridge ! Of course we then headed downhill , passing the micro brewery at Stod Fold … alas no tap room in the outbuilding but worth a look inside just in case ! Through Upper Brockholes we had one final steep uphill out of Holdsworth to reach the edge of Queensbury , followed by a superb stretch along the valley near Shibden Dale .

A short detour to a shop in a petrol station & a chance to refuel before the last stretch to Norwood Green & Bailiff Bridge . A final sting in the tail literally , saving the most overgrown nettle infused path til last to reach the canal at Brighouse where some opted for the early train & others decamped to Spoons for well earned alcoholic refreshment & curry .

Whilst the first Calderdale Way walk had more ascent , the second outing was the tougher , with four steep long ascents compared with just the one the previous week . Nevertheless the group made excellent progress on another demanding route with the 27 miles & 4200 feet of ascent polished off in 8 hours 50 minutes , almost identical to the previous week .