Distance 17.31 miles, cumulative 728.70 miles, time 6 hrs 45 mins, walking time 5 hrs 40 mins, pace 3.1 mph, Camped – Crowden Caravan and Camping Club campsite.
We’re Out…….of Yorkshire and into Derbyshire and the Peak District. We had a steady climb out of Standedge and over Wessenden Moor and Black Hill. We passed the Black Moss and Swellands Reservoirs. The dam of the Swellands Reservoir burst during construction in 1810 and six people were killed when the peaty water carried a 15 ton boulder 2 miles downstream and into a mill and cottage. The miller’s wife’s body was found a further 6 miles downstream.
A tough day of climbs finished with a steep and tricky descent into Crowden. The weather was mainly dry with the odd shower.
We shared this section of the walk with a group of three lads from a scout group in Gloucester who had just completed their GCSEs. They had rested yesterday and were at Standedge when we had arrived.
It turned out that the parents of one of the lads were also having a weeks holiday and were staying in a holiday cottage nearby. So mum and dad had come out to the site at Standedge to see their son and they took the lads into the nearby town for fish and chips. Today, dad had decided he wanted to walk with them for the second half of the day in order to spend some quality time with his son. So much to his son’s embarrassment, and to the delight of the other two lads, mum drove dad to a point halfway where the route crossed a main road. Dad joined the walk and mum was going to drive on to the campsite to pick dad up. The lads saw an opportunity and gave the tent they were carrying to mum saving them the load.
We arrived at the campsite before the lads to find that mum had arrived and put the tent up for them, bearing in mind the last we had seen of them was when we had left them earlier in the morning with no sign of any mum and dad.
The three lads therefore came in for some serious mickey taking from an ‘old couple’ who were able to carry and erect their own tent. The lads were suitably embarrassed and out of earshot of the mum and dad confessed to being relieved that the mum and dad would not be around to embarrass them for the remainder of their walk and to completely remove what little remaining street ‘cred’ they had left.
Steve however, was quite taken with mum but any thoughts of asking her to transport and erect his tent were quickly extinguished by a ‘look’ from Lynn which roughly translated indicated a slow and painful death by disembowelling.
We were asked about our kit. Our kit has been doing very well. The only visible wear and tear has been some stitching starting to come apart on one of Lynn’s boots but otherwise our well used Robbens tent, Berghaus waterproofs, Rab mid layers, Montane smocks, Thermarest sleep mats and Bridgedale socks are proving very reliable. The only ‘non High Street’ stuff we have are down sleeping bags and gillets which are made to order by a company called PHD Mountain Software based in Manchester. They are very warm, very light and pack down into tiny stuff sacks. http://www.phdesigns.co.uk
For shorts, trousers and base layers we use cheap dry fit clothes from Mountain Warehouse,Uniqlo, Matalan and shops like Sports Direct.
Lynn wears Berghaus fabric boots and a Karrimor 65 litre rucksack and Steve wears Scarpa fabric boots and a 70 litre Montane rucksack. We use a tiny collapsable gas stove which uses standard butane/propane mix canisters with an an old set of camping aluminium saucepans which seem better than anything we have seen currently available. All the kit means we each carry between 10 and 12 kilos depending on food and water requirements. We have green tea and instant porridge for breakfast and lunches are usually a malt loaf or oat crackers and cheese. We always carry biscuits and try to buy fruit for each day. We carry one dehydrated main meal for emergencies in the form of foil bags, you just add hot or cold water. For this walk we have a well travelled spag bol – mmm… yummy can’t wait for an emergency. We usually find a pub for our evening meal. The campsite we are on today is four miles from the nearest pub but the site wardens make pizzas to order each evening, having taken advance orders and organised staggered time slots for the campers. The pizzas were delicious and were even delivered to the tent.