Sunday, September 7, 2014

Moscar Lodge, Ashopton, Yorkshire Bridge, and Bamford

A perfect day today on public transport, including me timing my arrival at bus stops and Sheffield Railway Station so that my total waiting time was no more than five minutes. I even caught one of the few non-stop trains back to Doncaster.

Anyhow, I got off the bus at Moscar Lodge, right on the county boundary, and took the path that leads northwards, right past the lodge. There's no footpath sign, and someone who's not confident about their mapreading skills might be hesitant since the path goes right up the private drive belonging to the lodge....I wasn't hesitant though - I don't think anyone was at home to challenge me anyhow - it looked like the building was being renovated.

Just beyond the lodge the path merges with a byway and then I was heading in a westerly direction, with this being the view straight ahead.


I soon reached a road and a well-hidden location which seems to be an intersection of major gas pipelines; there's something similar further south at Owler Bar.



For the next half a mile I was walking in a southwesterly direction. I passed through the farmyard at Moscar House, serenaded by the two, or maybe three, resident dogs.

Without looking at my map I wasn't quite sure where my route ahead lay, but a couple of joggers overtook me and were heading up onto Derwent Moors, just where I needed to be...so I'd be able to follow them. In truth, the path was very well trodden and I wouldn't have needed to consult the map at all.

Although the heather was probably a week or two past its best, the entire moor was still tinged with purple, and was very impressive. For most of this section I was walking past a line of very well constructed grouse butts; I could imagine them being very comfortable for the shooters during the grouse shooting season in August.

It was a steady climb for about a mile and a half and then I reached the ridge where the land started to drop away. I soon got my first glimpse of Ladybower Reservoir and the Upper Derwent Valley. The reservoir would be in view until I lost enough height so that it was blocked by higher land in the foreground....my view of it would soon be re-established though, further down the hillside and then as I walked along the track which skirts the shore.





As I reached the main Snake Pass road and was crossing the Ashopton Viaduct over the reservoir I made a decision. I had noticed that for the last mile or so the Achilles' tendon on my right heel had been stiffening up, and so I would be ending the walk at Bamford, and not Hope as I planned to. I'd never had any problems with my Achilles' tendon until I played a bit of football at Clumber Park last week - since then I've had varying degrees of discomfort every day.

At Bamford I caught the number 244 bus for the first time; unlike most of the other services in the Peak District there weren't many people travelling on it.