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Ski Club of Manchester, Late Summer Walks 9th and 10th September 2017

Walk: Leader David Miller
Reporters: Brian and Catherine Beardsall

Saturday 9th September, Circuit of the high moorland fells near Slaidburn.

Despite it being the weekend of the Dunsop Bridge show no-one encountered any traffic problems and the group congregated in the Hark To Bounty for breakfast. From here we made our way down to the meeting point on the village green. Perhaps because of the dire weather forecast there were only six of us, plus Dolly and Peddar, although Jonquil and Vanessa came to see us off.

We left Slaidburn in a southerly direction and climbed gently up to Broadhead farm. From here we turned east along rough and soggy footpaths towards Harrop Hall then veered south towards Harrop Lodge where the footpath was almost blocked by nettles, rubble and other debris. We continued south through Harrop Fold and then climbed up onto moorland past Forrest Barn, which housed pheasants, waiting to be released for the shooting in October, and then into a pine forest and up onto Grindleton Fell and a very boggy stretch before emerging onto a short climb up to Beacon Hill where we stopped for lunch and to admire the view. After lunch we descended back into the forest and continued westwards, coming out onto Easington Fell which we crossed for about a kilometre. We walked on north down an easy track to Fellside Farm, on towards Easington and then down to the River Hodder. From here we followed the river until Slaidburn came in sight and walked home along the road to the Hark O’Bounty for tea. Having had only light showers during the day our luck changed and we had a very heavy downpour along this last stretch arriving very wet.

Those walking were Dave Miller, Steve Wardle, Dave Shepherd, Barry Lewis and Brian and Catherine Beardsall

Sunday 10th September, Longridge Fell from Hurst Green

Even the certain forecast of rain didn’t deter the twelve walkers [and four dogs] who assembled in the car park in Hurst Green. The initial part of the walk took us through the grounds of Stoneyhurst College, a rather upmarket R.C. school with associations with J R R Tolkien and The Lord of the Rings. From here, having lost Jonquil, who decided on a more leisurely day, we had a short walk along a road leading on to farmland and northwards up to the eastern end of Longridge Fell. Our ascent was along a pleasant forestry track but, with the low cloud, views were at a premium. We left the track as we proceeded west through trees and reached the Trig point on the northern side of the fell. Here the rain started, exactly as forecast, and was to continue for some time. Having had a discussion and taken a vote, our leader decided that we would lunch in the forest sitting on a convenient wall. After lunch we headed on south through the forest and then descended down a lovely gentle bridleway through farmland and woodland and finishing along the banks of the Dean Brook. During the latter part of the walk the skies cleared and we were rewarded with some lovely views.

Those walking were, Vanessa and Dave Miller, Steve Wardle [with Dolly], Roy Dearden, Whitney Formby, Paul and Jane Robbins, Chris Fildes [with Freddie and Fozzie], Barry Lewis, Catherine and Brian Beardsall [with Peddar]. Jonquil Lewis joined us for the initial part of the walk.

Our thanks go to Dave and Vanessa for organising two really pleasant walks and also to Steve for the Eccles cakes.

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