National Trail Guides UK
NATIONAL TRAIL GUIDES UK
Contents :: PENNINE WAY Day 16
THE PENNINE WAY NEARS ITS END AND PASSES OVER BLACK HILL
NATIONAL TRAIL GUIDES UK Day 16 :: Rescue on Black Hill :: Old Gate Nick to Crowden :: 13 miles
I awoke early again today and after doing yoga and breakfasting it was time to pack. I was very much aware that tomorrow would be my last day, and I was looking forward to going home and being with my family again. But for now I would have to forget about this and concentrate on the job in hand. I would have a difficult day ahead of me and I wanted to be well prepared for it.
I would be running today from Old Gate Nick over Millstone Edge (a ridge of rock on the boundary of Close Moss, with a steep drop on one side), across to Black Moss Reservoir, over Black Moss to Wessenden Reservoir and then up to Wessenden Head Reservoir. From there I would climb Black Hill, run along Laddow Rocks (a narrow path along a precipitous edge), along Rake Rocks and then finally descend to Torside Reservoir.
Rachel dropped me off at Old Gate Nick. I was hesitant to leave the car at first because I fully expected this run to be difficult, and I eventually forced myself to turn away and start running. I waved to Rachel as she drove off. She has been a very pleasant companion during this holiday and I made up my mind to spoil her a little this afternoon. She has had much to complain of, but she has not done so.
I was quickly on my way along a good clear track and ascending the Northern Rotcher, the side of which falls away very steeply down Blea Green and Coal Hill Slades, and I was soon onto the top of Millstone Edge where there was a very fine view over parts of Manchester. The Northern Rotcher and its edge were brimming with peat hags, which I quite enjoy running around, being peaty and gentle on the ankles, knees, hips and spine, unlike the hard stone and rocks that lay further ahead.
I descended Millstone Edge and crossed over the A62, cutting across the small car park there, and ran up a small flight of sandstone steps onto a sandy and stony track towards Redbrook Reservoir. Approaching the Reservoir the path then bore off to the right and headed for Black Moss Reservoir. After reaching this reservoir I then crossed it at the dam end on a sharp stony path, admiring the magnificent view across Little Black Moss Reservoir towards Diggle. I could hear gunshots from the rifle range near to Diggle Reservoir, although I could see neither the rifle range nor the reservoir.
Millstone Edge Little Black Moss Reservoir
Paving the Pennine Way on Black Moss Short Grain
Dean Clough Cairns marking the path near the summit of Black Hill
Meadow Grain Clough on Grains Moss Ford on Crowden Great Brook
Crowden Great Brook and start of Laddow Rocks The Castles, below Bareholme Moss
As I reached the foot of Rakes Rocks and as I neared the Reservoir, the Way veered away from the car park at Crowden where Rachel was to meet me. I took one of the many small paths to my left, through the ferns and down towards the weir over Crowden Brook. From here I ran very quickly to the car park where I was pleased to see Rachel’s happy, smiling face.
Torside Reservoir from Laddow Rocks Pennine Way on Laddow Rocks
The car park was too crowded to do my stretching and I drove to a car park on the Longdendale Trail, just off the Glossop Road and did my stretching there, much to the surprise of a number of cyclists who passed me. We then drove to Glossop where I purchased a small gift for Carol, and from thence to Edale to show Rachel the rendezvous for tomorrow – Edale car park. I then treated her to a fleece she had been eyeing in various shops all week. It just happened there was a sale from the car park and her fleece was being sold at a discount. We then had a first class meal in Hayfield, at the Royal Hotel. This was the first proper meal I had had for quite a long time.