View from Oban Bothy

View from Oban Bothy

Saturday, 26 September 2020

Windy Bottom Tally-Ho! 26th Sept 2020

Here we go again….

The Trail Layers, me and Whitehead, ably accompanied by Ade, met at 11am on the appointed day in the large and already quite full car park of New Mills Golf Club.

Loaded up with more sawdust than very loaded-up trail layers, we set off west on a stony track to descend to Brook Bottom. 

Fortunately, and depending on your point of view, the Fox Inn (Robinson’s) was yet to open. With no excuse to stop we descended further, following the initially very stony Goyt Way / Midshires Way, to Strines and it’s cobbled road – treacherously slippy in the wet. Don’t ask me how I know…

Windy Bottom Farm

Windy Bottom Farm Audience

River Goyt

Heading NW and along a good track that ran (?) parallel to the railway line and the R Goyt, passing the delightfully named Windy Bottom Farm, Strawberry Hill, Roman Lakes, and then the last of the bottoms of this route, Bottoms Hall.

Bottoms Hall

Roman Lakes: Closed

A climb up Old Hall Lane took us by Linnet Clough Reservoir and another climb to join a nice track to Linnet Clough Scout Camp Site, temporarily closed due to Covid-19 precautions.

We laid sawdust on the still open public footpaths through the campsite, giving us a good insight to modern day Scout activities. How times change.

Mellor marked the beginning of the return leg of our route, we headed south, skirting the Mellor Golf Course before turning East along Black Lane, a track open to motor vehicles.

 Geoff in trail-laying mode, followed by Ade


Geoff & Ade at The Cross

The curious sight of a large crucifix, sited by the 327m spot height was too good an opportunity to miss, so we trundled up, scattering sawdust as we went.

A crucifix was first erected by Marple & District Council of Churches in 1970, and replaced with this very substantial affair in 2018.

Curiously, the cross isn't marked on the current 1:25k OS map, but it does appear on the 1:50k.

Crossing Mellor Moor and continuing to the end of the long straight track we turned SE-ish along the delightfully named and very runnable Primrose Lane.

A stony / rocky descent to cross a minor road and then more footpath running followed. At last we head West, via the hamlet of Whitle and then final approach to the Golf Club, tea, coffee, dinner...and fizzy beer.

Whitle's centre piece

 8.5 miles of running appeared to be well received by the 20 or so runners who attended, although the good weather probably helped colour the opinions of many. 

The Golf Club allowed us to used their changing rooms and showers, sensibly limited to a maximum of two at a time, although few took advantage of the facility.

Indifferent and not very hot meals followed, but stomachs were filled. The choice of Farmers Chicken, Fish & Chips, and a vegetarian option was, on reflection, a bad choice. A better choice would have been the more usual no choice – other than having a vegetarian option.

The beer was fizzy. I may have already mentioned that.

Whatever, it was a good day out and members seemed happy that we return to the venue in the, hopefully Covid-19 free, future. 

Where we went:

8.5 miles, 1260’ ascent. Max / min elevation: 1070’ / 300’


(Note that some of the photos were from the recce)

Thursday, 24 September 2020

Edale to New Mills Backpack, 22nd Sept 2020

…and a gear test

The original Plan was to walk from Hope to New Mills but a fridge-freezer failure at home delayed my departure. I’d intended to park my car in New Mills and travel by train to Hope and walk back, but it was getting a bit late by the time I left home….so Edale was substituted for Hope.

The weather was ideal for backpacking, sunny & clear, warm and with a gentle breeze. I set off in shorts and T shirt.

15 minutes after leaving New Mills my train arrived in Edale and after a quick coffee at the Penny Pot cafe I headed off .

 The River Noe

The weather was ideal for backpacking, sunny & clear, warm and with a gentle breeze. I set off in shorts and T shirt, heading south to climb up by Harden Clough by Mam Tor to turn west and eventually gain the dizzy heights of Lords Seat and Rushup Edge. 

The views all around were lovely – particularly to the east towards Win Hill.

At the western end of Rushup Edge I turned north up the Pennine Bridleway. Chrissie Dixie had suggested a lovely camp spot but my late start rather put paid to getting there at a sensible time. Oh well, next time.

For some time I’d had my eye on a nice little camp spot by Roych Clough, fairly flat ground, water very close by, a couple of dry stone walls in case shelter was needed – and even a bench seat. Not much not to like.

As I came over the brow, the camp spot came into view – but someone had beaten me to it, a red tent was already in situ. I wasn’t that bothered, there was a fair amount of flat ground to choose from, I’d just had in mind a quiet night on my own.

Loads of little flags on the route over Rushup Edge - what for I wonder?


Joining the Pennine Bridleway

Down to Roych Clough



My neighbour was Barry from Burton-on-Trent. Barry had a horse, Barney, and together they were heading north to John O’Groats. They had left Lands End two months previously and  were wild / stealth camping all the way. Barry reckoned his journey would take another two months – as long as Barney could keep going and the weather allowed it.

Barry was furloughed from his work at a hotel but already knew he wouldn’t have a job when he returned – hence his trip. In addition he wanted to see more of his country, seeing it on foot / on horseback was a great way to do it.

To make his trip even more worthwhile he was fundraising for the RNLI – a fine charity. If you’re feeling generous you can donate here:

I had a late-ish dinner of home cooked and dehydrated lamb casserole. I’d made and dehydrated the meal in February 2020 and stored it in my freezer, it rehydrated beautifully and it tasted as good as the day I’d made it.

Barry and Barney


Gear Test:

This involved my new camping pillow, a Sea to Summit Aeros Premium Pillow, Large. The pillow proved extremely comfortable, far better than any other camping pillow I’d used. The Sea to Summit website describe it as being luxurious, I’m not going to argue.

The pillow packed into it’s own little stuff bag and was fully inflated with just a few breaths.Unlike other pillows I’ve used, this has a lovely soft & cosy feel to it – infinitely better than a stuff bag filled with clothes.

Surprisingly, it doesn’t slip and slide about on my NeoAir mat – further ensuring a good night’s kip.

Whatever, even at 106 gms (according to my scales) it will be coming along on all my future backpacking trips.

I bought mine via Amazon only because I couldn’t find one off the shelf in Manchester – and I did try.

My thanks to Mark Storey (of TGO Challenge fame) for his recommendation.



After a wonderful night’s sleep I packed up my gear just as the rain started. A disgruntled farmer rolled up on his quad bike and gave Barry quite a hard time for camping where he did. Curiously he ignored me….but I’m used to being ignored.

Nowt new there then.

Barry was running out of gas, and a quick check with Chrissie revealed no camping shops in the area – Chrissie lives in Hayfield, just up the road. I arranged to meet up with Barry the next day and bring him a couple of cylinders.

Lovely view

On the Sett Valley Trail

The wonderful Sett Valley Cafe

On final approach into New Mills I came across Hissing Sid, aka Charles the Lockdown Snake:


R Goyt, New Mills

Where your Swizzels come from

About 10am I departed, it was a bit of a steep climb away from our overnight stop – a bit of a rude awakening! I needed full waterproofs, thank heavens for Paramo which kept me toasty and dry.

Gear Failure:

My feet got wet. Very wet. My eVent-lined Teva boots had decided it was time to impersonate a sieve, a task they peformed faultlessly.

I shouldn’t complain, although I’d looked after them well, I’d had these boots for some years – and they were second hand when I bought them. A shame really, they were probably the most comfortable boots I’ve ever had.

My route took me over South Head, down by Peep-o-Day, and then north to pick up the Sett Valley Trail which led me straight into New Mills.

A quick cuppa at the car, a change into dry footwear, and I was home in about 35 minutes.

Next day

I drove over to Hayfield to supply Barry with gas and camomile tea bags. They then set off north to spend that night camping just outside Glossop.

I last contacted Barry on 2nd October, they were camping up in Gargrave.

 Barry & Barney in Hayfield - in the sunshine.

My route (ish):

More photos here



Sunday, 20 September 2020

Final Recce: New Mills Tally-Ho! Sun 20th Sept 2020

After all the little tweaks, a final recce of the Cheshire Tally-Ho! Hare & Hounds trail from New Mills was needed….as was my desire to get out for a bit of a walk.

The trail-proper was to take place the following Saturday so this was a good time to check it all out in one go.

The final two tweaks were around Linnet Clough Reservoir and around Marple Golf Course.

It was another glorious day, bright & dry with oodles of warm sunshine – HOT sunshine really. I slathered my exposed bits with Factor 50.

Not many words here, mostly photographs of a really lovely day.

Windy Bottom Farm





B.P. at Linnet Clough Scout Camp Site

The Cross

Kinder Downfall

The final, never to be revised again, route: 8.5 miles, 1250' ascent

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