Thursday, 30 June 2011

Mam Tor and Kinder Scout 11.6.11



16.85 Miles, 6-7 Hours.

Kinder Scout has been on my list of places to visit for ages. It's classed as a mountain according to Wikipedia - which I suppose technically it is - being over 600 metres in height. But basically it's just a high bit of moorland. It's a historical place too, if your a hiker, as this was the sight of the mass trespass that took place in 1932, once again see Wikipedia for that.

So it was a train to Edale which cost me £18, and so for that I wanted to get as much done as possible. Also the journey was over two and a half hours, changing trains at Sheffield.

The journey from Sheffield to Edale is of some of the best scenery I've seen in the country, I will have to return to this area more often, great green rolling hills, not dissimilar to the Long Mynd in Shropshire, but with a remoteness to them that wouldn't go a miss in the Yorkshire Dales.

 En-route from Sheffield I noticed that at each station I passed, the station sign displayed a local point of interest, with Hathersage, for instance, proudly proclaiming 'for Stanege Edge' beneath its name, and so on up the line.
        
        Section 1. Edale to Mam Tor

 On arrival at Edale it was raining. But the sky didn't look to threatening, and the hot June sun was melting away the heavy looking rain clouds which were etched across the sky.
 So first up on the map to get to was Mam Tor, where no one else from the train seemed to be heading. I walked down the ramp from the station platform and along the small lane leading to Edale Road, which twists it's way along the Vale of Edale. This is a bit busy, so watch out when crossing, and when walking along it. Turn right along the Edale Road, and after about 60 yards you will see a farm gate, with a public footpath sign on your left...
Turning up the lane now, this will lead you out onto the stunning surroundings of the Vale of Edale, and here with Mam Tor in the foreground...
 Looking back towards Edale, and the impressive Broadlee-bank Tor...
 And a glimpse of Kinder Scout...
Continue along the lane for a good mile, until you reach Greenlands Farm. Turn left here, and head through the kissing gate...
 This is the start of the main path to Mam Tor from Edale. It is well sign posted too...
The pathway gets pretty steep, but continue on up until you reach a high road...
Once at this road, cut up the side of the fence in the above picture, and you will see a path cutting steeply up the hillside on your left...
 looking across towards kinder Scout. The weather also was getting hot now!...
 When the pathway starts to level out keep the fence on your left, as seen below, for about 20 yards. Then I cut right up the not so well trodden steep path, over the grassy hillside. You can just make out the path in the grass in the picture...
You will then eventually come to a very well built stone path, that will lead you to the summit...
 Mam Tor summit Trig Point, 517 m (1,696 ft) with Kinder Scout opposite...
 There are some stunning view's of the surrounding Derbyshire countryside from here. But if you don't like lots of other walkers, this isn't the place for you. I had to wait a good 5-10 minutes at the summit to get a pic of the Trig Point as an example.
 From here you can also see the Blue John Cavern area, and the impressive Rushup Edge, as this is part of Great Ridge, a long ridge which stretches from Hope and continues almost as far as Chapel-en-le Frith.

  Mam Tor has had a lot of work done to it, to include these put into the summit plateau's placed stones...
Now head down from the summit, back towards the high road. But this time going right the way over Mam Tor, and heading down the steep steps that have been built - which will lead you back onto the high road again...
 Now heading towards my next objective, Kinder Scout...

           Section 2. Edale to Kinder Low


When you get to the lane that leads back up to the station, stay on it, pass under the railway, and continue past the Rambler Country House pub and pretty houses, until you see a pathway cutting down into some woods approximately 1 km from Edale station. This will lead you over a footbridge across Grindsbrook, then up some steep steps onto the main path towards Grindsbrook Hollow. Sorry about the dodgy picture's here...
 Keep to the left path here, heading into a wooded area...
  When you reach the other side of the wooded area, cross over the footbridge and take the track up through Grindsbrook Hollow...
 Up high on your right is a crag called Ringing Rodger...
This is where you need your walking boots on! From here the pathway becomes more like a stream bed, which it probably is when the snow's are melting. But care is needed on this stretch of the walk...
 Looking back at Mam Tor...
 Heading over the boulders of Grindsbrook Hollow...
 The last section is a real test for any walker...
 Looking back at the Hollow...
Once at the top you should see a flag stoned pathway going directly over the bleak plateau of Kinder Scout...
 Some interesting boulders adorn the Kinder Scout Plateau...
 On my walk, I decided to bag the Trig Point at Kinder Low first. Then head north towards Kinder Downfall, and the Trig Point at 'The Edge'. And then head back on myself via Kinder Low again, and then get the Trig Point at Brown Knoll - before heading back towards Edale via Jacob's Ladder.
 Here crossing the peat hag's directly towards the first Trig Point...
 Kinder Low Trig Point 633m...

        Section 4: Kinder Low to The Edge


 Now heading north on the Pennine Way trail towards Kinder Downfall.
 Kinder Downfall is the highest waterfall in the Peak District, but is a trickle for most of the year. However in winter is apparently a spectacular sight, and when it freezes it is a magnet for ice climbers from all over...
 Some fantastic view's from the path, you could make out Glossop, Manchester, Winter Hill, and the Snowdonia Range on the far horizon...
 A distant Kinder Downfall...
 Kinder Reservoir and Mermaids Pool...
 Kinder Downfall...
 Traversing the top of the impressive jagged cut...
 The river Kinder making it's way towards the reservoir...
 Follow the path for another mile, then a bit of compass navigation across the peat bogs took me to 'The Edge' Trig Point'. A good one this, where the peat has been completely eroded away around the Trig, leaving the concrete base on show...
 This random fork stuck into the peat made a great camera rest to get a picture...

        Section 4: The Edge to Brown Knoll


Now is a matter of heading back towards the Kinder Low Trig Point, by-passing it and heading towards Brown Knoll...
 Beast guarding Kinder Downfall...

 I took this to give you an idea of the distance. The lower ridge far south, is the edge of Brown Knoll...
 Passing Noe Stool, heading towards Brown Knoll...
 Take the right hand path...
 When you get to this Pennine Way sign, cross over the stile, or open the gate here. Then take the path over some boggy ground...
 After a good half mile's hike, cross over this stile on your left, and take the muddy track you can see below over the peat bogs to the summit of Brown Knoll...
 Brown Knoll summit Trig Point 569m...

    Section 5: Brown Knoll to Edale


 Now head back to the Pennine Way sign. Then turn right and head down the rocky path way towards Jacob's Ladder...
 At this point, you have the option to either go left down Jacob's ladder, or an easier route to the right... Jacob's Ladder it is then...
 I'm glad I didn't come up this way...
 Continue along the path from Jacob's Ladder, and make your way through Lee House yard. Being as this is the Pennine way, it's well sign posted, and will eventually take you back into Edale...
 Turn left here...
 And right here...
 Mam Tor comes back into view...
 Looking along the Hope Valley...
 This bit was harsh. After the distance undertook, this seemed very steep again, tough on the legs and feet...
 And the last gate into Edale. A few cider's at the Rambler's Inn, and then back to the station...
This is a trek that I'd like to do again, great area to hike. Next time I'd also like to bag the one Trig Point I missed out on at Blackden Edge, and also the true summit perhaps.
Thank you for taking the time to read this entry.
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