Wednesday, 6 January 2010

New Years Eve

A little late, but here it is ->
Seeing as I had absolutely no intentions of going out and getting ratted in the evening (or any part of the day really) I went for a nice crisp walk on New Years Eve day.

I set off from mine wading through a slushy gloopy mess to get from my door to the road before sploshing my way down to the lovely Bay Horse and the beginnings of the climb up to where the true walk would start.
Once at the start of the off road route I slid my way along the access road (Vale Lane) to the entrance for the fish pond, looking gorgeous in the hazy sunshine and frosty ice on parts of it, before heading properly off road to the muddy pathways where I did my coppicing in November, along those and through a field to bring me out by Medlock Vale Farm and it's gloriously muddy tracks churned up by the frequent manoeuvres of the funky tractor.

These tracks led to a bridge over the Medlock Valley with steep slopes down to the river side, which I slid my way down, and made my way to one of the little islands in the river (the water is only ankle deep to get here).
After a scramble back up the slope my route took me across the undulations in the area, crossing the river again on a rather precarious little bridge (no rails, just the ice for company and the babbling river below) before hauling ass up a steep hillside to get to the Oldham Way at the top of one side of the valley with Brookdale Golf Course on the opposite side, sheer drops to the left of me and a barbed wire fence for the farm close to my right.

Splodging my way along here I was often met with very deep and thick mud patches, too big to jump across and no way around. The only answer was to walk through it. Admittedly it was quite good fun, so I didn't really mind. Over and across a few stiles, then it got even muddier as I had to squelch my way across a field then another stile, then along the Jericho Trail to Stannybrook where I tried not to slide down the hill towards Medlock Hall Farm and scrambled my way back up another hillside along the trail to the start of Riversvale Drive, turned off to head to Sammy's Basin then off again to splodge through the wildflower meadow (it is allowed), past more areas where I hacked down trees, down the hill, through the river to clean my boots a little (it didn't really work for the boots, but it did on the gaiters) and hauled ass up the other side of the valley to the cafe.

After chowing down on a bacon butty and steaming tea I hauled ass home to a very welcome hot bath and to flop on the sofa with a big grin on my face!

Stats -
Miles: approx 8
Lots of fun had.

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