About Me

When? Started: 1993 Who? Started with staff and friends from U H S, Chester. Organiser: Martyn Harris We walk every Wednesday and Saturdays, New Years day and May Day. How many walk? Walks take place as long as there are at least 2 wanting to walk on that day. More walk on a Wednesday than on a Saturday. Most ever: 29. Numbers walking: 2-12, a mid-week and 3-4 on Saturday. Where do we walk? Saturday: Anywhere in North and Mid-Wales, Peak District, Shropshire and the Long Mynd and as far North as the Trough of Bowland. Thursday: Anywhere within about 40 miles of Chester. Type of walk: Distance: 6 – 14 miles. Climb: up to 4000’ (but usually very much less!). Those involved in 2017:- Martyn Harris, Fran Murphy, Sue and Michel Pelissier, Annie Hammond, Sue and Dave Pearson, Mike Dodd, David and Anne Savage, Celia de Mengle, Wendy and Ian Peers, Roger and Margaret Smith, Tim and Carol Dwyer, Paul Collinson, Phil Marsland, Sylvia and Dave Jenkins, Sheila McNee, Ed Meads, Elaine and John Greenhalgh, Jim McCabe, Mal Pulford., Joyce Russell

Monday, 29 November 2010

Cheetham Close, Jumbles Country Park and More 27th November 2010

Updated on the 29th November 2010.
Looking across towards Peel Tower on Holcombe Moor above Ramsbottom.
At the trig point on Cheetham Close.
At the trig point on Cheetham Close.
A large heron, modern art called "the Wader".
A very obliging Kestrel, just round the corner from the Strawberry Duck.
Icicles, a sign that it was still quite cool! Adjacent to the path from Turton Bottoms back to the Jumbles Country Park car park.

Walk stats:Distance:10.6 miles; Climb:1116'.
Time:4 hours 59 minutes; On the move walking average:2.5 m.p.h.; Overall walk average:2.1 m.p.h.
Group:Martyn, Roger, Dave J., Mike D., Carol and joined by Elaine and Paul for the last part of the walk.
Another glorious day for walking, a little on the cool side, especially if you forget your Paramo jacket! Despite the forecast of "partly cloudy", we seemed to have plenty of sunshine. The extension over Cheetham Close gave us good views towards Winter Hill and Holcombe Moor and the circuit around Turton and Entwistle Reservoir was a real bonus.You can see why so many of the locals enjoy walking around these reservoirs. We had lunch taking advantage of one of the many seats provided, three of us sat on the seat, and two sat on the wall alongside. Martyn provided some of his fruit cake for those daring enough to risk the alcohol present!
There didn't seem to be many birds on the reservoirs until we arrived at Wayoh Reservoir where Carol spotted some Goosanders, over a dozen in all, male and female in about equal numbers. The Goosander was definitely our bird of the day, but we did get some superb views of a Redwing and later on a Kestrel.
Elaine and Paul joined us for part of the return journey and were rewarded with a piece of fruit cake for their efforts to meet us before we got back to the car park! Attempts to communicate using modern technology failed miserably as mobile phone signals were absent for most of the walk.
Birds seen or heard today included:European robin, Blue tit, Great tit, Long-tailed tit, Blackbird, Mallard, Great cormorant, Pochard, Redwing, Buzzard, Black-headed gull, Herring gull, House sparrow, Dunnock, Black-billed magpie, Jay and Goosander.
After walk drinks were enjoyed at the King William Hotel in Bromley Cross where Thwaites Bombadier and Original went down well, but the tea wasn't the best brew that I've ever tasted.
The high point of the day for me was meeting two locals since one was a very special friend from more than 20 years ago. It really was lovely to make contact again.
This a superb Winter walk, preferably to be repeated knowing that sections around Cheetham Close would be frozen, otherwise it would have great potential for being on the boggy side! It would be lovely to meet up with the locals again as well.

Thursday, 25 November 2010

A Walk from the Crown Hotel, Llandegla 25th November 2010

A Christmas message from Sarah and Kelly at the Crown Hotel.
Starting off across the fields in glorious sunshine.
Enjoying elevensies!
Phil giving advice on how to cross rhe stream safely.
The Clwydians from a path on the return route to the Crown Hotel.

Walk stats: Distance:5.5 miles, Climb:723'.
Time: 3 hours 0 minutes; On the move walking average:2.3 m.p.h.; Overall walk average:1.8 m.p.h.
Group:Martyn, Roger, Fran and Tito, Sylvia and Dave J., Phil, Tim and Carol, Annie H., Sue and Michel and Sheila and Gordon joined us for the meal at the Crown Hotel.
This was a glorious day for a Winter walk, sunshine, largely blue skies, frozen, but thawing ground underfoot and a biting wind to remind us that the days for wearing shorts were over for another year.
It's not often that we follow a walk description exactly, but today we did, and the section contouring around the Western edge of the moor on the return half of the walk, gave us some superb views towards the Llantysilo Mountains and the Clwydians.
At about 11-30 we stopped for a snack that included fruit cake (provided by Martyn), cheese (provided by Fran) and Panettone (provided by Sue), a little too much had we known the size of our meals to come.
Birds seen or heard today included:Coal tit, Blue tit, Great tit, Chaffinch, House sparrow, Canada goose, Kestrel, Buzzard, Blackbird, Carrion crow, Raven, Black-billed magpie, Mistle thrush and Red-legged partridge.
We arrived back at the Crown a little earlier than planned, but Sarah spotted us and opened up for us.
As ever we were warmly welcomed by by Sarah, leaving Kelly slaving away in the kitchen. We enjoyed our drinks as we sat quite close to the wood burning stove in the main bar area. We didn't realise it, but Sarah and Kelly had set out the new restaurant area for our meal together and had put out Christmas crackers too.
The meals were superb, and one or two of us were impressed by the size of the bacon and black pudding starter, it could have been a main meal on its own! At last Tito had the Chef's Mega Mixed Grill, but he couldn't finish it on his own. Only Phil had a dessert, having not had a starter, but no-one else had inclination to join him, our eyes may have been willing, but our stomachs couldn't cope. Extra mega sized chips were provided, but alas we couldn't do them justice, and we did try!
The meal was finished by Sarah bringing out coffee and Mince pies for all those that could cope.
We all left very contented and looking forward to our next meal at the Crown Hotel.

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Dates and Walks November 2010

Group Walk and Meal at the Crown Inn, Llandegla.
Please see below for details.
Thursday 4th November 2010.
Around Helsby Hill and Frodsham Marshes.

Distance: 11-12 miles. Climb:800'.
Start: Frodsham Main Car park (Turn right at traffic lights off Helsby Road and then left immediately after the Helter Skelter pub. Grid ref: SJ517778.
Leave Chester at 9-00 a.m.
The Helsby part of the walk is taken from Jen Darling's book "More Pub Walks in Cheshire and the Wirral". Her walk starts at the Netherton Hall, but we will start in Frodsham and use the Sandstone Trail to link with the walk by the golf course. After completing the circuit at Netherton Hall, we will return to Frodsham using some of the many tracks/footpaths that wind their way around Frodham Marshes. Frodsham Marshes can be good bird watching area, so bring your binoculars with you.

Saturday 6th November 2010.
Winter Hill, Rivington Pike and Lever Park.
Distance: 9 miles. Climb:1035',
Start: Car Park, Lever Park Grid ref: SD635229.
Leave Chester at 8-00 a.m.
This is another walk taken from Terry Marsh's book "Fifty Classic Walks in Lancashire". He describes the walk as a generally easy walk on good tracks throughout, and is a tek through history. Weather permitting, we should get good views of the Darwen Moors visited last month.

Thursday 11th November 2010.
Burton and Parkgate.
Distance:10 miles. Climb:500'.
Start: Roadside parking on Denhall Lane next to benches overlooking the marshes. Grid ref: SJ301747.
Leave Chester 9-00 a.m.
The Burton circuit is taken from Jen Darling's book "Walks in West Cheshire and the Wirral". The extension will involve some road walking through Neston to link up with the Wirral Way and onto Parkgate. The return route will use coastal paths as much as possible and pass Neston Old Quay and Denhall Quay on the way back to Denhall Lane.

Saturday 13th November 2010.
Around Anglezark Reservoir and More.
Distance: 8-11 miles. Climb: Not a lot expected!
Start:Car park and picnic site, Rivington Park. Grid ref: SD628138.
Leave Chester 8-00 a.m.
This walk is based on a walk from Terry Marsh's book "Fifty Classic Walks in Lancashire". His part of the walk is described as being on generally good paths and tracks, but can be muddy! The extensions will result in the whole walk going past 5 reservoirs. It will probably be worthwhile bringing binoculars with you.

Thursday 18th November 2010.

Lleweni Hall, Denbigh Castle and Goblin Fields.

Distance: 9-10 miles. Climb: 670'
Start: Layby/off road parking opposite the entrance to the Brookside Mill Tavern on the A525. Grid ref: SJ072658.
Leave Chester at 9-00 a.m.
These two walks are taken from Dave Berry's book "Walks in the Vale of Clwyd". One walk is described as a delightful walk that included a fine Medieval church, the historic Lleweni Hall and attractive riverside paths by the Afon Clwyd and Afon Ystrad.
The second walk is described as interesting and takes a "green"approach to a little known castle in Wales.

Saturday 20th November 2010.

Black Hameldon and More.
Distance:11-12 miles; Climb:2000' at a guess.
Start:Car park and picnic site at Hurstwood. Grid ref: SD883133.
Leave Chester at 8-00 a.m.
This walk is based on a walk from Terry Marsh's book "Fifty Classic Walks in Lancashire" with extensions to include Hoarside Moor and Shuttleworth Moor. The walk includes part of the Burnley Way and the Pennine Bridleway. This walk isn't recommended in poor visibility, so let's hope for good weather.

Thursday 25th November 2010.
Cyrn-y-Brain and Sir Watkin's Tower.
Distance: 7 miles. Climb: 800'.
Start: Car park at the Crown Hotel Pen-y-Stryt, Llandegla.
Leave Chester at 9-00 a.m.
This is the day we agreed to have a meal together following our Thursday walk, hence the reason for the walk being shorter than usual.
This walk is based on a walk produced by Denbighshire Country Services. It is described as a pleasant walk through varied landscape, and eventually rises to open moorland. The extension takes a little further across the moor to the summit of Cyrn-y-Brain and Sir Watkin's Tower. We will use the Offa's Dyke and Clwydian Way Footpath to return to Llandegla and the Crown Hotel, hopefully for about 13-30, in time for a meal around 14-00 hours. The walk may be shortened to ensure that we are back at the Crown by 13-30.

As we are having a meal after the walk, there is no need to bring any packed lunch. Martyn will provide fruit cake (the first from this years batch) for everyone, but please let him know that you are coming on the walk.
Saturday 27th November 2010.
Jumbles, Wayoh, Turton and Entwistle Reservoirs.
Distance:10 miles. Climb:1000'.
Start:Waterfold Car Park, off Bradshaw Road (A676), Jumbles Country Park.
Leave Chester 8-00 a.m.
This walk is based on a walk taken from Terry Marsh's book "Fifty Classic Walks in Lancashire". He describes the walk as a pleasant walk on good paths. The extension to Turton and Entwistle Reservoirs includes another section of the Witton Weaver Way and crosses Turton Heights and a hill called Cheetham Cross.

Saturday, 20 November 2010

Black Hameldon and More 20th November 2010

Crossing the bridge over Hurstwood Brook.
A normal discussion on route finding - heading for the Burnley Way / Pennine Bridle Way.
Paul and Pippa on the Hare Stones.
At the trig point at Hoof Stones Height.
Looking across Shuttleworth Moor and Black Moor towards Gorple Upper Reservoir
and beyond to Heptonstall Moor.

Walk stats:Distance:11.3 miles (maybe more for some) ; Climb:1557'.
Time:5 hours 56 minutes; On the move walking average: 2.2 m.p.h.; Overall walk average:1.9 m.p.h.
Group:Martyn, Roger, Dave J., Celia, Paul and Pippa.
The weather turned out to be pretty good, some sunny spells, a cool breeze at times, but no rain. This was quite a challenging walk, especially if you wanted to keep your feet dry, not everyone succeeded! More than half the walk entailed trekking across boggy peat moorland. We now know why so many of the named areas have the prefix "black"! What a blessing it was to get back on the solid ground of the Burnley Way / Pennine Way Bridle Path near Gorple Gate.
Lunch was taken by the remains of a now empty reservoir just west of Hoar Moor.
Half the group decided to follow the Pennine Way Bridle Path all the way back to the car, whilst the other three decided to continue their bog trotting and follow the described route past Cant Clough Reservoir.
Birds seen or heard today included:Blue tit, Great tit, Mallard, Chaffinch, Meadow pipit, Snipe, Kestrel, Raven and Red grouse (they seemed to be everywhere.)
Overall an "enjoyable" walk, perhaps never to be repeated!
After walk drinks were enjoyed at the Kettledrum Inn at Mereclough where the best brew on offer was Deuchars IPA.
In the Kettledrum Inn afterwards Roger even admitted to "snorkeling" in Clegg Foot stream.

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Denbigh Castle and Lleweni Hall 18th November 2010

An early star of the day and the bird of the day , a dipper on the Afon Ystrad.

The entrance to Denbigh Castle, closed even to CADW members!

All in single file, you can tell most of them must have bee teachers!

St Marcella's Church, the parish church of Denbigh.

"Do you know what that dog did? He left is mark on my boot!"
Who could have said that?

"Can you believe it? All this fuss about a "Royal" wedding!

Walk stats: Distance:10.1 miles; Climb:598'.
Time: 4 hours 55 minutes; On the move walking average: 2.4 m.p.h. Overall walk average: 2.1 m.p.h.
Group:Martyn, Roger, Phil, Sylvia and Dave J, Gordon, Annie H., Sue and Michel.
What a good day for walking this turned out to be. We had a good start to the walk when we saw a pair of Dippers just upstream from the Brookhouse weir. Later on we met a group of Denbigh ladies on their regular walk that informed us that it never rains on a Thursday! We were happy to confirm that even today for us it turned out to be true.
Lunch stop opportunities were somewhat in doubt one someone in the group had spurned the seats in grounds of St. Marcela's Church and raced ahead. Eventually we were able to take advantage of sitting on a wall on a bridge overthe Afon Clwyd just south of Lleweni Hall.
The return along the banks of the Afon Clwyd wasn't as wet as we were expecting, but it did have its "claggy" moments!
The return rout on the raised embankment along the Afon Ysdtrad was far more hazardous than was desirable to say the least! We encountered several fallen trees that blocked the path, and in one case we, despite being in the "wrinkly" group, had to return to a posture more appropriate to the under two!
Birds seen or heard today included: House sparrow, Chaffinch, Dipper, Carrion crow, Jackdaw, Raven, Common buzzard, Herring gull, Black-headed gull, Blue tit, European robin, Chaffinch, Blackbird, Redwing, Mistle thrush, Nuthatch, Mute swan, Great cormorant, Teal, Mallard, Grey heron and Winter wren.
We arrived back at the cars, more tired than we expected, but agreeing that these two walks combined well, especially heading for Denbigh Castle first.
After walk drinks were enjoyed at the Britannia Inn at Pentre Halkyn. The Lees bitter was superb, a credit to the new landlady, but we had confidence in her when we knew she was taking over the licensee from Sarah and Kelly.

Saturday, 13 November 2010

Around Anglezark Reservoir and More 13th November 2010

On the track below Anglezark Moor.
Looking up Dean Black Brook towards the disused quarry East of White Coppice Village.
The picturesque cricket ground at White Coppice village.
Looking across Chorley towards Blackpool Tower from the entrance to Healy Nab wood.
Looking across Anglezark Reservoir towars the Leicester Quarry.

Walk stats: Distance: 11.2 miles; Climb:1000'.
Time:5 hours 29 minutes; On the move walking average: 2.4 m.p.h.; Overall walk average:2.0 m.p.h.
Group:Martyn, Dave J. and Celia.
The weather in the main was good, although the temperature fluctuated from being somewhat chilly to being a very warm wish I was wearing shorts weather!
This was a very varied walk considering we were walking around so many reservoirs. We had several wooded area to go through, some moor-like terrain and old tracks to follow. Views were pretty good too, with Rivington Pike and the Winter Hill masts often in view and during lunch we had good views across Chorley with Blackpool Tower clearly seen in the distance.
Birds on the reservoirs were somewhat limited, but superb views of Greater spotted woodpeckers and Jays made up for it. However the highlight was probably a flock of Fieldfare turning away from us with bright sunshine reflecting on their undersides making them almost twinkle like stars!
Overall this was a good walk, but next time we do it, we now know how to avoid the worst of the boggy/muddy bits and Celia won't have to go paddling again!
Birds seen or heard today included: Great spotted woodpecker, Green woodpecker, Mallard, Coot, Moorhen, Tufted duck, Goldeneye, Great cormorant, Winter wren, European robin, Chaffinch, Bullfinch, Redwing, Fieldfare, Great tit, Blue tit, Long-tailed tit, Black-headed gull, Lesser black-backed gull, Sparrowhawk, Carrion crow, Jackdaw, Pied wagtail, Nuthatch, Blackbird and Buzzard.
After walk drinks were again enjoyed at the Spinners Arms (Bottom Spinners) on Church Street, Adlington. Harviestoun Bitter and Twisted and Timothy Taylor Landlord were the to brews that revived tired legs on this occasion.

The name Anglezarke is derived from two Norse-Gaelic elements. The first part comes from the name Anaf , a form of the popular Scandanavian personal name of Olav. The second part comes from the Old Norse word erg or the Brythonic word cognate with Gaelic word àiridh (dialectactal arke or argh) both meaning a 'hill pasture or shieling'. The two elements together mean 'Anlaf's hill pasture' - i.e. 'the hill pasture belonging to Anlaf'. The earliest spelling of the name was in 1202 when it was recorded as 'Andelevesarewe'. By 1225 this had become 'Anlavesargh', in 1351 'Anlasargh', and by 1559 'Anlazarghe'.

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Burton to Parkgate via Haddon Wood 11thNovember 2011

St Nicholas's Church, Burton with its unusual one-handed clock face.

Walk stats: Distance:10.3 miles, Climb:150'.
Time: 4 hours 42 minutes; On the move walking average:2.7 m.p.h.; Overall walk average:2.2 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Roger, Gordon, Annie H., Sue and Michel, Fran and Tito, Phil, Sylvia, Dave J. and Georgie the Jack Russell.
Good numbers for a walk on a day when the forecast was for rain and strong winds. It did rain before lunch, but not that much, and it was warm enough to get a way with shorts, but alas I listened to the weather forecasters and decided to wear my Paramos!
Our first place of call was St Nicholas's Church, Burton with its unusual one-handed clock face, and a bonus was being able to see inside the church as it was open for church members getting it ready for the Remembrance day Service.
We arrived out of Burton Wood, and mis-read the walk description and turned right instead of left and had a slight deviation through Haddon Wood.
After a couple of miles or so along the Wirral Way and rain seeming to thwart any idea of a lunch stop, we emerged out of the Neston Cut to blue skies and sunshine. Lunch was enjoyed on "seats" under shelters in Stanley Park. Fortunately we didn't have to watch any teenagers showing their skills on roller boards!
While a few members decided to go to the PC down the road, the rest of the group had a rest on the front at Parkgate and were entertained by Tito wrapping up what to some seemed liked an endless piece of string emerging from the marshes. What he would do with this string leaves much to the imagination, but at least it no longer littered this area of Parkgate!
The remaining part of the walk followed the shore-line along a well defined footpath, muddy at times!
A wildfowler was seen setting out onto the estuary, but thankfully we didn't hear ant gunfire!
Birds seen or heard today included:Jackdaw, Rook, Carrion crow, House sparrow, Blue tit, Great tit, Long-tailed tit, Teal, Wigeon, Curlew, Black-headed gull, Blackbird, Long-tailed tit, Pied wagtail, Common starling and Mute swan.
After walk drinks were enjoyed at the Wheatsheaf in Ness, where Thwaites' special Remembrance Day brew was enjoyed by at least two members of the group. Tito even sampled a glass of wine from near his home village in Italy, he didn't comment on its quality!

Saturday, 6 November 2010

Rivington Pike and Winter Hill 6th November 2010

Rivington Pike and the mast on Winter Hill from the Liverpool Castle Folly.

Looking towards Pigeon Tower and Rivington Pike from a footpath on the East side of Lower Rivington Reservoir

At the trig point on Winter Hill.

A the largest of the three cairns on Twa lads.

Walk stats: Distance: 8.7 miles; Climb:1232'.
Time: 4 hours 39 minutes. On the move walking average:2.2 m.p.h. Overall walk average:1.8 m.p.h.
Group:Martyn, Dave J., Mike D and Fran.
What a glorious day for walking this turned out to be, my only regret is that I believed the weather forecast and decided not to wear shorts! Wall to wall blue skies, plenty of sunshine and hardly any wind.
This was a very pleasant walk, and only a very short section on the climb from the Belmont Road to the top of Winter Hill was on the muddy side, even the detour around the masts wasn't too bad. We decided to make a slight detour from the described route to visit the summit of Twa Lads, well worth the minimal extra climb.
We had good views towards both Snowdonia and the Lake District
A slower than usual walking average, largely due to the fact that everyone we met, and there were lots, were very friendly and seemed happy to talk more than a the normal "good morning" or "Hi"!
Birds seen or heard today included: Chaffinch, Blue tit, Great tit, Coal tit, Black-headed gull, Black-billed magpie, Raven, Mallard, Meadow pipit, European robin, Jackdaw, Carrion crow, Great cormorant, Kestrel and Jay.
The walk finished early as we couldn't find an easy extension to the walk, so we were forced to head for an early pint in the Spinners Arms (bottom house) on Church Road Adlington. An excellent selection of beers were on offer, and all those sample were enjoyed once they had warmed up slightly!

Thursday, 4 November 2010

Frodsham Hill, Helsby Hill and the Marshes 4th November 2010

On the Sandstone Trail from the Frodsham Monument to the golf course.
Most of the group at the trig point on Helsby Hill.
Martyn at the trig point on Helsby Hill for the first time! Photo taken by Fran.
(A rare photo appearance!)
Michel enjoying the view from our lunch spot.

Walk stats: Distance:10.8 mile. Climb:1497'.
Time:4 hours 59 minutes. On the move walking average: 2.5 m.p.h. Overall walk average:2.2 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Roger, Celia, Annie H., Sue and Michel, Phil, Fran and Tito, Sylvia and Dave J.
Weather a littler on the barmy side, mid teens and definitely shorts weather, well it was for some!
This was a good walk, starting from Frodsham, supposedly following the Sandstone Trail, but we got it wrong twice within the first few miles. I should have let Phil lead the way to the top the Monument on Frodsham Hill!
The early part of the walk was superb, and all the people we met, mainly walking dogs, were very sociable, and the dogs were friendly too!
For me the highlight was visiting the summit of Helsby Hill for the first time, a new trig point visited is always a bonus!
The route also past a an old cockpit, pointed out by Phil, the most elaborate one that I have seen. Thankfully no longer in use!
We decided to cut the walk around Frodsham Marshes short as it had started to rain, but it gave some the bonus of passing the stalls on Frodsham Market.
Birds seen or heard today included: House sparrow, European robin, Blackbird, Carrion crow, Black-billed magpie, Jay, Blue tit, Common gull, Mallard, Greylag goose, Moorhen, Blackbird and Kestrel.
After walk drinks were enjoyed at the Helter Skelter Inn/Wine bar in Frodsham. The brews on offer were many, but most of us sampled the Maidens Cross from the local Frodsham brewery. This hostelry deserves all the credit it gets, and it even has over-sized glasses! 8 real ales and a real cider, over-sized glasses, what more could you ask for?