Broomhill to Strines; via Stanage Edge and High Neb
This Saturday’s walk was predominantly inspired by the inconsistent nature of rural public transport. We’d planned to walk around the northern arm of Ladybower Reservoir, then on to Strines via Foulstone Moor.The latest online bus timetable for the 274, going from Sheffield to Castleton, via Yorkshire Bridge, suggested that the first bus of the day should arrive at Broomhill around 08:16. At 08:30, it still hadn’t arrived, so my friend Craig and I decided to shake off our reliance on the transport system, and instead walk out to Fox House and see how we felt from there.
We took the usually popular, but mostly deserted path through Endcliffe Park, heading towards Ringinglow Road, then took up the battered bridleway leading to Fox House from close to the Norfolk Arms.
The further we walked out of the main habitation zone, and the more altitude we achieved, the more the wind picked up and the heavier the fine drizzle became, at one point threatening to soak us through in a similar fashion to that of last week’s fun & games. However we came prepared this time, and changed into our waterproofs on the bridleway passing Lady Canning’s Platation. The mist was pretty thick giving us probably around 50m visibility, and considering we encountered a couple of groups of motocrossers with varying levels of headlight integrity and speed regulation, at times this felt a little dangerous.
Arriving at Fox House, we decided to get warm inside whilst we took a look at the map, and decided where to go on from here, which also involved ordering a beer, of which my foul choice tasted like something akin to vinegar. Delicious! Having made up our minds, we grabbed a quick sandwich and headed off along Burbage Moor towards Higger Tor. We descended a short way, to cross Ringinglow/Hathersage Road, making our way to the southern tip of Stanage Edge.
As we approached the edge, it seemed like the cloud was not going to lift and I was quietly disappointed, as one of my main goals of the day was to check out the views over Hathersage and Bamford Moors in order to test my new lens, (which my better half Sarah, and my parents kindly chipped in for it as an early birthday/christmas present!). But fortunately, my disappointment wasn’t to last, as ever-so-slowly most of the mist blew over the edge from the south-west, and the blanket of cloud ascended somewhat, giving us transient peeks at the mist-laden landscape.
Indeed, once the cloud had lifted, the path along the edge felt liberating and, perhaps being something to do with the proximity and extent of the open moorland on all sides of Stanage, somehow less claustrophobic than the barren edge-walks on Kinder, (the latter feeling hemmed in by the Great Ridge to the south, and the Bleaklow region to the north).
Upon reaching High Neb, we were afforded increasingly clear views out towards the Great Ridge and Kinder Plateau. We then descended onto Moscar Moor, and headed for the Snake Pass for the road to the Strines Inn. On what was our final push to the pub, the weather took a turn for the delightful, with sun and blue skies breaking through properly for the first time all day. Given these turns, we headed for the beer garden, peacocks and all, to enjoy what might be the last of the properly decent weather for some time, (at least according to the weather forecasts).
The road-walk back to the Snake Pass was lit by the dying sun, and quite a beautiful sunset it was. And to top it off, whilst waiting for the unlikely event that the bus should turn up to take us home, a car pulled up to the bus stop and John, a courier from Barnsley, stopped to offer us a lift into town! If you’re reading this John, thanks a bunch, we owe you a beer! Quite a lovely end to a fulfilling Saturday’s walk.