Saturday, 24 January 2015

A Walk Up Pendle Hill. . .

This is the infamous Pendle Hill in Lancashire, full of witchcraft lore and history, although the only thing brewing on the day of this walk was some foul, windy weather.  I've passed Pendle's distinctive shape so many times on the motorway and have always wanted to climb it, so when it came up on the walking group's schedule, I was definitely going - no matter the forecast!

We started from the tiny village of Downham and were soon climbing the slopes.  The first bit is the steepest, after that the path evens out and it's quite a quick ascent. . .

. . . at least to the false top.  Still a bit to go. . .

Despite 40 mph winds, it's not the type of hill that one worries about being blown over (although people often get lost if the mist comes down).  The top is flat and full of moorland.  The downside of course is that you are completely exposed to the elements.  The windchill and stinging, freezing rain on my face that day was something I hadn't experienced since leaving Canada.  Ooh, it was strong!

Thank god for a shelter in the middle of nowhere, where we sat for a soggy lunch despite the rain and the wind that still attacked us through the open top.

But this is what British walkers love; huddled up in the cold, with muddy boots and overtrousers, enjoying a cuppa.

After lunch, we set across the moorland, beautiful and bleak in its own way.  I kept thinking how lovely this walk would be on a sunny summer's day.

There were still some views to see through the haze.

And then the surprise descent was through an absolutely lovely and colourful valley.

This led to the Ogden Reservoir.

And some interesting and unexpected architecture to allow the water to flow down.

From there, it was a pleasant walk to the little village of Barley, along bits of the Pendle Way, with these signs the only witch we encountered.  This is definitely a walk I'll be repeating when the weather turns fair.

1 comment:

Sara said...

Ooh, good for you to get out in winter! That hill looks like a nice leg-stretch, and I'm just wild about moorland. I love the shots of muddy boots.