Sunday, August 18, 2019

Fairholmes, Low Bradfield, Holdworth, Loxley, Malin Bridge, and Hillsborough

A much longer walk in the Peak District today after yesterday's short walk with two friends along Froggatt Edge. The day didn't start well though, I arrived at Doncaster Railway Station to discover that the early train to Sheffield had been replacement coach provided, no information on the screens, no staff to be seen anywhere... So, I had to catch the bus which takes a lot longer but I still arrived at Sheffield just in time to get on the bus going to Fairholmes.

I walked over to the dam and then continued along the track that goes alongside the eastern shore of Derwent Reservoir.

After three quarters of a mile I reached a footpath which was going up onto the moors. I travelled eastwards across the  high ground for about three miles until I arrived at the road just north of the Strines Inn.

The trig point at Back Tor was the highest point I reached on my walk today.

After walking along the road for a few minutes I took the concessionary footpath which goes through the woods alongside the northern, or western shore of Dam Dike Reservoir. There's a memorial to the victims of the 'Great Sheffield Flood' of 1864 when the dam wall collapsed, and there's also an information panel about the disaster when at least 240 people died - I didn't take any photographs though because there were several people at each location and I didn't want to be seen as conspicuously waiting for them to move away.

There was more roadwalking down into Low Bradfield and then it should have been footpaths across fields all the way to Loxley...however, I lost my path and ended up walking on the road again for most of the stretch to Holdworth. My route went over the fold of the map so I didn't bother to check where I was going.

Low Bradfield is a pretty village. There are some tearooms there which I haven't visited yet.

When I joined the footpath at Holdworth I was walking along the Sheffield Country Walk - I left it just before Worrall to take a more southerly route towards Loxley Common and then Wadsley Common.

I went through  some extensive woodland on my approach to Loxley - I'd not been that way before, and my descent into the Loxley Valley was all new to me as well. I couldn't catch a tram from the terminus at Malin Bridge because the tracks are being replaced. I had to walk a bit further to Hillsborough where trams were running to the city centre though.

My train back to Doncaster was eight minutes late departing, but at least it wasn't cancelled. It wasn't a good day for public transport today.

Saturday, August 17, 2019

Walking From Curbar Crossroads to Fox House With Damo and Lydia

A short afternoon walk in the Peak District today with my friend Damo from Leeds, and Lydia, his friend who lives in Sheffield.

We arranged to meet at the bus station at Sheffield for two o'clock; fortunately they were twenty minutes early and so were able to catch the 13:40 bus, arriving at the start of our walk about forty minutes later.

We headed over to the Wellington Monument and then the Eagle Stone.

We continued walking along the Eastern Edges until we reached Fox House, calling en route at the Grouse Inn, which is at an isolated location up on the moors.

We had a Diet Coke each at the Grouse Inn - I took photographs of the foreign banknotes which are displayed throughout the pub.

It was a bit too windy on the edges, but otherwise it's been a lovely afternoon and early evening spent walking and chatting in Derbyshire with friends.

Monday, August 12, 2019

Carlton in Lindrick, Wallingwells, Gateford, Worksop, Shireoaks, Netherthorpe, Top Hall, Harthill, Woodall, Wales, and Beighton

I travelled to Carlton in Lindrick and got off the bus at the far end of the large housing estate there. I immediately found the footpath heading off to the southwest, and Wallingwells,

There are some pretty ponds at Wallingwells.

Just past these ponds I took a bridleway towards Gateford on the urban fringe of Worksop. I got to Gateford without problem, but soon after my friend called me on my mobile phone and I wasn't concentrating on where I was going and ended up far too close to Worksop town centre. This lapse did mean however that I got to walk past an unusual house; a bog standard council house plastered on all its windows and walls, and the garden fence, with hand-written posters complaining about the Royal Mail and local politicians...I decided not to take any photos; in fact I put my camera in my pocket. I didn't want to provoke anything.

After walking along the canal towpath of the Chesterfield Canal for a couple of miles I picked up my original route at Shireoaks.

The church at Shireoaks isn't very old, but it's quite attractive.

I continued past Shireoaks Hall and Netherthorpe Airfield.

There are some expensive properties at Top Hall and the footpath is routed well around them. I continued across the fields, and a short section of road until I reached Harthill. Just before reaching Harthill I saw the first two fairy rings I've ever seen. They weren't very impressive and so I didn't take any photographs.

I spent a few minutes in the area near to the church at Harthill, it's a conservation area. When I got to the church I discovered that it was open.

It was a pleasant walk over to Woodall; there's nothing much there apart from a couple of farms and some nice houses. The name of Woodall is well-known though because of the nearby Woodall Services on the M1 motorway.

The footpath heading northwards towards Wales runs alongside the motorway for a short distance before heading off to the right in the direction of Wales.

Of course, there's a church there as well; it's a large village.

When I reached the first bus stop at Wales I saw that a bus going to Rotherham was due in seven minutes' time and so I decided to wait. My original plan was to continue on to the Rother Valley Country Park and then catch a bus back to Rotherham or Sheffield from Beighton. I was a bit tired by now, eleven miles into today's walk following on immediately from yesterday's nine mile walk in the Peak District.

I waited for over twenty minutes and no bus arrived; by now I was sufficiently rested and restored that I decided to set off again and head for Beighton by the shortest and quickest route. I seemed to be walking for a lot longer than I expected though but as soon as I crossed over the River Rother and two railway lines I was able to work out where I was on the map.

I arrived at a bus stop near to a parade of shops in Beighton - the buses from here went to Sheffield. The bus that arrived was bright orange...and on time this time.

Sunday, August 11, 2019

Hope, The Great Ridge, Bradwell, and Brough

It was sunny when I left my house in Doncaster this morning, it wasn't sunny though when I got off the bus at Hope; it was drizzling and quite misty...I had much heavier rain at times later though, and some glorious sunshine as well. Today I walked along the Great Ridge from east to west, from Lose Hill to Mam Tor, for the first time for a few years. From Hope; I headed north, passing over the railway line that goes to the cement works and then cut down to the Edale road.

Just before Townhead Bridge I took the track going uphill over to the left and was soon climbing up the southeastern flank of Lose Hill.

The walk along The Great Ridge is less than two miles but it took me quite a while because I kept stopping to admire the views and take photographs in the improving weather conditions...and there's a steep, rocky, slippery descent with lose stones underfoot as you come down Back Tor.

As expected, it was quite crowded on the summit of Mam Tor and so I didn't linger and made my way down the steps and then across the fields and along the track, heading south all the time.

I know this area well and so when I reached a spot where five footpaths meet I wasn't hesitant about which was the right way. A bit further on I had to pause though to check my other map because my route today would take me just beyond the coverage of the northern map and just very briefly into the area of coverage of the map for the southern part of the Peak District. 

Having confirmed the way ahead I crossed Bradwell Moor. There's a choice of routes down into Bradwell and I can't be precise about which one I took.

There's only a bus every two hours going to Sheffield on a Sunday and so I walked along the road to Brough, to finish the walk there.

I didn't use this footpath; I just took a photograph of the sign, which is placed there so that the right of way isn't permanent and so therefore will not appear on any official maps of the area.

I didn't use this seat either.

The unpredictable weather spoiled the walk a bit for me, but the thing that really annoyed me today was my itchy arms. I always keep them well covered up and so I don't think it would have been  caused by anything that bit, stung, or scratched me. So what was it then? When I got home and got undressed I noticed that there was no rash, nor any other blemishes on my skin; it's not as bad now as it was a few hours ago and I'm hoping a good long soak in a hot bath later will soothe my skin. 

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Darfield, Little Houghton, Grimethorpe, Clayton, Thurnscoe, and Hickleton

I managed to fit in an afternoon walk today after my lunchtime appointment in town. I caught the Barnsley bus to Darfield and headed north towards Little Houghton and then Grimethorpe.

The first interesting thing I saw to take photographs of was the memorial to Houghton Main Colliery at Little Houghton; most former pit villages have a similar memorial featuring the winding wheel from the pit's headgear.

After only briefly visiting Little Houghton I walked down the pit lane and then across a variety of different countryside landscapes on my to Grimethorpe, probably not as bad a place as its name would suggest.

This sign was mostly likely in the parish of Great Houghton...

...and these two shots of the local landscape were taken a bit closer to Grimethorpe. 

It was a steady climb up to the top of Brierley Common and Howell Wood Country Park. The approach to the country park meant me having to go straight through a bean field because the path was indistinct, I didn't find the correct exit from the field and so needed to climb over a wobbly gate.

The location of Howell Wood Country Park is a bit unusual because although it's inside Doncaster Borough the only road access requires a vehicle to pass through parts of Wakefield, or even both Barnsley and Wakefield if you want to use the most direct route from many areas.

I spent far too much time in Howell Wood literally walking in circles, or turning back on myself, until I found a way out. It wasn't where I wanted to be, but I could get to Clayton from there.

When I reached the 'Welcome to Doncaster' sign I noticed that someone had dumped their rubbish on the road right next to the sign.

I quickly passed through Clayton, only briefly pausing for a drink at the village pond, my orange squash was delicious.

I decided that I needed to jog for part of the time for the last mile or so to Hickleton to make sure I arrived in time to catch the bus. I went down Chapel Lane at Thurnscoe because I think it's a bit quicker going that way - and it's certainly easier for jogging. I got to Hickleton with enough time to spare to take some photographs of a few of the pretty cottages in the village.