Friday, March 5, 2010

Hardcastle Crags

The walk starts near the Packhorse Bridge in Hebden Bridge.  This bridge is dated from the early 18th century so is wearing quite well really.  The route follows the River Salam up to the National Park.

The first part of the walk is through the streets at the back the town and these houses must date from the time of the mills.  No one would build a house these days with no garden front or back and the doors opening straight onto the pavement.

A hundred yards and you come to the Old Packhorse bridge.  If the previous one was early 18th century I wonder when this one was built.

Just the river, trees and the footpath.  Very quiet and an easy walk.

But then you come to the steps.  The riverside path was not for the packhorses but these steps are well worn so must be a bit ancient.  Your knees will feel it when you get to the top.

This looks like the old Packhorse way although I doubt if it was metalled in the old days.  The stone walls are covered in moss and the trees have a multitude of lichens.I counted twelve with ease.

The way then goes back down to the valley floor to cross the bridge below.  This is likely to still  be the packhorse way with the cobbles still in place over many yards.

At the bottom is the Blue Pig.  Its a working mens club and it is worth checking the times if you fancy a pint.  I was shut when I walked by.

The bridge is near the end of the walk and the entrance in to the park.  From here there are any number of walks laid out and signposted.

I sat up here for about an hour.  All I could hear was the river below and the bird song. In the two trees in front of me I saw - Robin, Wren, family of Long Tailed Tits, several Blue Tits and a couple of treecreepers.

On the way back there is a sign to Hebden Bridge.  At this point there is a notice that says that for a short part of the walk you are on the road so I turned round and when back up the slope.  A lovely day but could have been better.

That was yesterday.  Today we moved to charge the batteries.  I wish now that we hadn't.  There is little water in the canal after going through a couple of locks and we couldn't turn around so had to press on.  I had to stop at one point and get a bloody great lump of plastic off the prop.  After that I had some problems and I think it has moved the shaft.  Sort it out tomorrow. 

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