Mar 192015

Ladybower and Black Tor walk.

Distance: 15.25 km (approx 9.5 miles)
Time: approx 4hrs 15mins
Height gained: 536 m
Map: OL1 – The Peak District – Dark Peak Area
Parking: Lay-by SK172893
Refreshments: None on route (but some nearby at the Vistors’ Centre SK172893)

View the route in OS Openspace: Ladybower and Black Tor (opens in a new bowser window)

From the parking area, cross the road and take the bridleway just the bridleway on the right just before the viaduct (point 1). Follow the well-surfaced path alongside the reservoir. At point 2, it joins a minor road. Continue on, passing a few properties, an aqueduct across the reservoir and a telephone box on the left.

At point 3, the dam of Derwent Reservoir comes into sight. If you feel a need for refreshments (or the loo. carry on along the road and it soon sweeps left in an arc to the Visitor’s Centre (point 4). I did not take this option so can’t comment on the facilities.

If you don’t want the facilities at the Visitor Centre, fork right at point 3, passing through a gate and on to a well-surfaced bridleway, soon passing alongside Derwent reservoir. In around another 1 km, watch for a footpath on the right (point 5) and get for a climb out of the valley and on to the moor. The path jig jags up the hill and does not follow the line of the oath shown on the map; the way forward is obvious, though. AT point 6, follow the line of the fence to a corner with another fence and turn to the south initially still following a fence line before swinging left and heading towards the obvious peak of “Lost Lad” (point 7).

The going is good and just before the final climb to the Lost lad, there is a stepped path. Once at the summit, enjoy the 360 deg view and there is a topograph showing the direction of distant feature. All the significant climbing is now finished and it’s an easy path to the next objective of Black Tor (point 8). It is difficult to miss as someone has painted the old trig. point in white paint so it really stands out. I would suggest a rest here, plenty of rocky ledges to sit and it’s easy to find somewhere out of the wind.

Our way forward is now southerly and there is an excellent path laid using natural rocks. It follows the edge of Derwent Edge passing Dovestone Tor (point 9) Salt Cellar to Wheel Stones. After passing Dovestone Tor, the rock path finishes and, at the time of my visit, the path carrying on was being improved using a mix of a heather base with a sand and gravel top. I had the impression that the original path was through a bog for most of the way!

Still heading south beyond Wheel Stones, ignore the crossing track and pass Hurkling Stones. At the next crossing path (point 11), turn right (west) to drop steeply down a badly eroded gully, ignoring the bridleway to the right. The gully soon finishes and swing south again to head towards firstly woods on the right and then onwards to enter the woods themselves. There’s a minor ascent but nothing to trouble the legs.

Come out of the woods through a gate at point 12, swing sharply right to head west on a tarmaced road and there should be views of the car parked below in the layby. The way back is now obvious.

Dec 302012

A walk to one on the most popular attractions in the Yorkshire Dales.

Distance: 8.2 km (approx 11.8 miles)
Time: approx 2.5hrs
Height gained: 397 m
Map: OL30 – Yorkshire Dales (Northern & Central areas)
Parking: Lay-by at Hestholme Bridge(SE 025889)
Refreshments: Cafe, National Park Centre, Askrigg (SE 012887) (just off route)

Pub, West Burton (SE 016866)

Pub, Aysgarth (SE 004884)

View the route in OS Openspace: West Burton – Aysgarth

Route: (Clockwide) Hestholme Bridge – Egdley – Sorrelsyskes Park – Burton Bridge – West Burton – Eshington Bridge – Flattlands – Aysgarth – Hestholme Bridge

Dec 292012

A walk to one on the most popular attractions in the Yorkshire Dales.

Distance: 19.0 km (approx 11.8 miles)
Time: approx 5.0 hrs
Height gained: 397 m
Map: OL30 – Yorkshire Dales (Northern & Central areas)
Parking: Market Place, Askrigg (SD 948910)
Refreshments: Cafe, National Park Centre, Askrigg (SE 012887)

Pub, Carperby (SE 008898)

Pubs and cafes, Askrigg (SD 948910)

View the route in OS Openspace: Aysgarth Falls from Askrigg

Route: (Anticlockwide) Askrigg -Low Gate – Nappa Mill – Woodhall Park – Barrowfield Bridge – Bear Park – Aysgarth Falls – Carperby – Oxclose Road – Heugh – Newbiggin – Askrigg

Note: Depending on the water level on the river Ure, it should be possible to follow the river rather than take the route through Woodhall Park and Barrowfield Bridge. The river stretch was completely impassible on my visit.

Jun 092012

A walk in the South Downs National Park taking in south of the River Arun and the South Downs Way.

Distance: 19.0 km (approx 11.8 miles)
Time: approx 4.5 hrs
Height gained: 438 m
Map: Explorer 121 – Arundel & Pulborough
Parking: Amberley station car park (TQ 026117)
Refreshments: “George & Dragon” pub, Houghton (TQ 017144)

Whiteways cafe (TQ 001108)

Amberley Tea Rooms (TQ 031130)

View the route in OS Openspace: Amberley and South Downs Way

Route: (Clockwise) Amberley station – Houghton Bridge – North Stoke – South Stoke – Houghton – Whiteways Cafe – South Downs Way – River Arun – Amberley – Highdown – Amberley station

Note: The final leg of the route from Highdown back to Amberley station (on the south side of Ameberley Museum follows a overgrown footpath that seems to end a precipitous drop into the old quarry at Amberley Museum. I ended up climbing over barbed wire fence and straying off public rights of way to get back to the car park. It’s best to follow the road from Highdown to pass on the north side of the Museum. This would also avoid waist-high stinging nettles!

May 182012

Distance: 8.7 km
Time: approx 4hrs
Height gained: 582m
Map: Outdoor Leisure xxxxx
Parking: Overlooking the loch; immediately before the camp site (NG 410205)
Refreshments: None

View the route in OS Openspace: Coire Lagan & Eas Mor

Route: t.b.a

Feb 032011

Distance: 10.8 km
Time: approx 3hrs
Height gained: 300m
Map: Outdoor Leisure OL24 – The White Peak
Parking: Layby adj. to new Bridge, A625 (SK 244753)
Refreshments: Pub, Grindlefor (just off route – SK 243775 )

View the route in OS Openspace: Curbar, Curbar Edge and Longshaw

Route: New Bridge – Curbar Church – Curbar – Curbar Edge – Froggatt Edge – Hay Wood – Grindleford – Horse Hay Coppice – Spooner Lane – Froggatt Bridge – New Bridge

Nov 102010

Distance: 11.5 km
Time: approx 4hrs
Height gained: 516m
Map: Outdoor Leisure OL5 – The English Lakes, North-eastern area
Parking: Cow Bridge car park, A592 (NY 404134)
Refreshments: None

View the route in OS Openspace: Hayeswater and Angle Tarn

Route: Cow Bridge – Hartsop – Hayeswater Gill – Hayeswater – The Knott (lower slopes) – Rest Dodd (lower slopes) – Satura Crag – Buck Crag – Angle Tarn – Angletarn Pikes – Stony Rigg – Boredale Hause – Dunhow – Hartsop – Cow Bridge

Nov 072010

Distance: 13.5 km
Time: approx 5hrs
Height gained: 1150m
Map: Outdoor Leisure OL5 – The English Lakes, North-eastern area
Parking: In lay-by on A591 (NY 337085)
Refreshments: “Travellers Rest” near start (NY 336089). Nothing on route.

View the route in OS Openspace: Grasmere – Helvellyn – Thirlmere

Note: My routes starts from my holiday rental cottage in Easedale. If starting from the point suggested above, the route then is around 12 km.

Route: Mill Bridge – Little Tongue Gill – Hause Riggs – Hause Gap – Grisedale Tarn – Dollywagon Pike – High Crag – Nethermost Pike – Striding Edge (western end) – Helvellyn – Lower Man – Browncove Crags – Helvellyn Gill – Highpark Wood.

Return to the start at Grasmere is by bus (once every 2hrs on a winter Sunday).

Nov 062010

Distance: 11.5 km
Time: approx 4hrs
Height gained: 418m
Map: Outdoor Leisure OL4 – The English Lakes, North-western area
Parking: NT car park, Rosthwaite (NY 258158)
Refreshments: Teashop at Watendlath Farm (NY 276173), cafes in Grange (NY 253175) and at Yew Tree Farm (near start/end of route) (NY 258148)

View the route in OS Openspace: Watendlath and Grange

Note: My route starts from Scafell Hotel. The suggested start is more readily accessible.

Route: Rosthwaite – Birkett’s Leap – Puddingstone bank – Watendlath – Watendlath Beck – Mossmire Coppice – High Lodore – Grange – Holmcrag Wood – Low Hows Wood – High Hows Wood – River Derwent – Rosthwaite.

May 262009

A walk rich in historic interest and the beauties of Hampshire’s round-hilled chalkland countryside.

Distance: 14.5 km (approx 9 miles)
Time: approx 4 hrs
Height gained: 76 m
Map: Outdoor Leisure 131- Romsey, Andover & Test Valley
Parking: Public car park in Horsebridge near “John o’Gaunt” pub (SU 346303)
Refreshments: “John o’Gaunt” (SU 344304),
Offroute pubs at SU 343325 and SU 308329

View the route in OS Openspace: Horsebridge and Broughton (opens in a new window)

All images taken from the same walk in 2000 using a Nikon 950 Coolpix camera. This was then considered to be a high quality camera! I’ll update the photos with more recent ones when I get the chance. Click on an image to display a larger version and then use the navigation buttons in the bottom to move forwards and backwards.


Go back to the car park entrance opposite the John o’Gaunt pub and turn right onto the road and immediately look for a FP on the left. Take this path and head E as it passed along the backs of the gardens of the houses to the R. Take care when crossing the A3057 to the S of King’s Somborne. Continue through the recreation ground to a minor road. Turn L and pass the church on the L with a pub in front. Turn R on to the A3057 then then immediately L (signposted to the Cemetery) and climb up hill, now heading N and look for a path the field on the L; take this and continue parallel until a track is reach. Turn L and after around 700 m, continue on down hill. At the crossing the Test Way on the old “Spratt & Winkle” railway line (photo 1), continue straight on, now on the Clarendon Way.

Follow the Clarendon Way as it crosses several carriers of the river (photos 2 & 3). At a junction with a metalled road in Houghton, turn left and follow this past houses until reaching a wooden seat on the right. Turn right, still following the Clarendon Way.

Continue on to a track, eventually passing a copse on the left. At a junction after dropping down the hill, turn left (point 3) and continue straight on at a minor road. Cross the ford on a concrete bridge (photo 4) and at a junction with another road, cross the road and start climbing “The Hollow”. Ignore the first crossing path and continue to where the track splits into three. Take the left hand path (no obvious signpost) and follow the grass track along the field edge and shortly enter a wooded area, climbing steeper now.

Turn left on to the road. After about 200 m, turn right at a road with a cul-de-sac sign. Start to descend and where the rack bears sharp right at the bottom of the hill, go straight on, following the right-of-way sign. At the gateway, turn left.

Follow the wide grassy track, through another gateway into the farmyard. Go through this and follow the concrete track which shortly meets a road. Turn left and follow the road for about a kilometre until there is a farm drive on the left and a gravel track on the right. Turn right on to the track. Cross over the river and after a second bridge, bear left across the field towards old willow trees. Climb the stile at the old railway line and turn left. The path skirts around the old Horsebridge Station with its restored platform, signal box (photo 5) and carriages. Take the narrow track to the right at the end of the station back to the car park.