As usual the number 51 bus was packed with schoolchildren so my journey out to the terminus at Lodge Moor was rather unpleasant - but I arrived there unflustered and unscathed.
I dropped straight down into Fox Hagg Local Nature Reserve; I noticed that the first, and steepest section of the bridleway had been re-surfaced since my previous visit. Further down it got very muddy underfoot in places as I walked through woodland to reach the Rivelin Dams and the Wyming Brook Nature Reserve at the bottom of the valley.
There's a small car park at the entrance to the nature reserve and a lay-by at the other access point on the A57 road. As I approached the latter I noticed at least four small plastic bags most likely containing dog pooh...maybe it would have been better if the dog walkers had just let their pets do their business and not bothered to pick it up and bag it. Certainly the environment would look a lot cleaner...but at least I suppose the drinking water supply isn't getting contaminated.
I walked along the busy main road for a short distance and then took the first path leading up to the right, a steady, gentle climb up to Crawshaw Lodge. There's a sign on the gate that reads 'Beware of the Dogs' - I was more concerned about the peacocks, I counted at least seven of them.
I made quick progress along the track across the moor to Crawshaw Farm, and then Ughill. I had to stop and take a photograph of the direction signs at the junction of two roads.
It's not a very good photograph of some not particularly attractive countryside...but I couldn't resist an image which includes the words or phrases, 'Ugh, Tinker Bottom, Dung, and Burglars Beware.'
I passed through Ughill, there are only about half a dozen farms or houses there, and continued along the road until I reached a footpath which took me across the fields to another stretch of road, and then a path downhill to Dale Dike Reservoir. Towards the bottom of this section the footpath which goes through the forest was closed because of tree felling and so I took what was marked as the diversion...well it wasn't, I got a bit confused trying to remember exactly where I should go and ended up just heading directly for where I wanted to be, climbing over a fence and two walls to finally get there.
It was quite busy as I was walking alongside the reservoir; a dog wearing a nice red woolly coat approached me and so I asked it how it managed to keep the coat so clean. Almost instantly its female owner answered telling me that the trick is not to walk where it's muddy; a few minutes later five greyhounds sniffed my crotch, each in turn...not saying a word between them.
I always take a photograph of the pump house when I pass it...and the memorial stone to the victims of the Great Sheffield Flood a few yards further on.
Finally I walked down the road to Low Bradfield, well actually the bus terminus at the edge of the village: the view from there is quite pleasant.
My journey home to Doncaster was thankfully uneventful. The weather in the Peak District today wasn't very good, mainly overcast with a cold wind...but when I arrived back home it was sunny and warm. This isn't too surprising though because I think the weather in Doncaster is significantly better than the upland areas of the country such as the Peak District.
If everything goes according to plan I'll be going on the bus to Gainsborough tomorrow with my friend Justin - something that I couldn't have done six months ago when I needed at least a day to recover from a walk.