Saturday, 24 July 2004

Tuesday 20th july

Left Burnley on the 11-50 train to Hebden Bridge, the sky looked rather doubtful so I had packed my waterproof in my rucksack, though it wasnt in the least bit cold. On arrival went up to the archery place, then past the bowling green to Midgehole.Since last I was round there the nettles had grown considerably, and so had rosebaywillow herb and speedwell.

Climbing up the probably 1in 2 slope up to Heptonstall was a hairy experience, all I had on my feet were sandals, so I had to grope from boulder to boulder and hope not to slip on the soggy patches in between where I could see previous skid marks. Eventually I arrived on the main road jst before the village, ready for a home cooked pub lunch which was very enjoyable. A couple of village cats joined me, 2 sisters, recently neutered, one stripey and the other black.


After leaving the pub I walked across the field to Lumb Bank where my daughter did a writing course last year, and then down into Colden Clough where the Colden Mill used to be.I continued on a path to the right of the stream but after about a hundred yards the track became too dangerous to continue on. I retraced my steps and joined a pack horse track on the left which leads to Colden village. At least this track was safe underfoot. On both sides it was lined with both heather and bilberry, the latter of which was in fruit. I met an elderly lady who had gathered a whole container of them to make pies with. She said it was the second day she had gone out picking them. Because of the humidity down in the valley they ripen quicker than up on the moors.Around Burnley on the moorland they still have to ripen. On the latter part of the track on the right hand side I saw a stone amongst the bilberries, about 3 foot high, mostly covered in bracken.Whether this was an old standing stone or an old waymarker I want able to ascertain.. Eventually I reached  Jack Bridge and the New Delight Inn, had a drink ouside but the sky was getting darker  so caught the 4-30 bus back the Hebden bridge rather than risk the soaking that had been forecast.


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