Friday, 4 February 2011

Redmires - Stanage

After a glorious day on Pen-y-Ghent, I unexpectedly ended back home in Sheffield on Saturday night and woke on Sunday feeling grey.  Actually I didn't really wake because I hadn't actually been asleep, which was the reason for the greyness.  Anyway it matched the day outside the kitchen window.  After catching up on some catch up TV and still feeling restless, I grabbed the daysack and drove up to Redmires with only a vague idea of where I might go.  I ended up sneaking up on Stanage Edge by a route which started by following sheep tracks until they ran out and then landrover tracks in the bracken until they ran out and then a stream until that ran out and finally across some burnt heather until that also ran out just before the High Neb trig point and moments before my legs ran out. It was a breathtaking thrash.- that is, I felt quite out of breath.  Clearly my body doesn't function well after no sleep.  Anyway, despite the greyness or as a result of it, the Hope Valley skyline was one of receding silhouettes


Hope Valley panorama from High Neb, Stanage

To the north west, dense grey smoke was rising high into the sky from burning off the heather.  There had been signs of this at various sites across the local moors all last week.

Close by the trig point is a rock with a cup and water channels carved into it.  There are a series of them up this end of Stanage, from the time it was used as a drove road used by Jaggers, the local name for the drovers who transported goods over the moors using pack-horses to carry things such as salt from Cheshire.  This cup is labelled number 9, though it's not clear from the image below unless you zoom in above the cup.

High Neb Cup (no. 9)

A few photos later and I headed east along the edge towards Stanage Pole with the sun just starting to turn the clouds pink over my right shoulder.

Fading red sun over Hathersage

I reached the Long Causeway to find two 4x4s had just arrived, radios on at full volume and preparing to descend the track to the plantation near Dennis Knoll. 

The Long Causeway from Redmires, below Stanage Edge to Dennis Knoll

At the Pole I checked the geocache, which my son had shown me last year - a sad, broken plastic box filled with trinkets and a soggy notebook to log visits. 

Stanage Pole

Duly logging my visit I headed off down towards Redmires and it was then that I saw the new anti-4x4 defences which have been erected since New year, from just below the gate all the way down to the reservoir.  The damage done by the off-roaders was unsightly (why do these folk think it's ok to go off the track?) but I think this fence and random blocks of stone looks far worse.

 Landrover proof fence

 Damage done by 4x4s

Not glacial erratics

The track is currently a Public Byway, meaning that 4x4s and trails bikes may legally go along it.  The good news (from my perspective)  is that Derbyshire Country Council have posted a notice at the bottom of the track, stating they have evidence that the Long Causeway should be added to the Definitive Map.

If I understand it, this could lead the way to reclassifying the Causeway as a Public Footpath or Bridleway, which would put a stop to motor vehicles using it.

Distance 5.3 miles, Ascent 650 ft


QDanT said...

Hi Tony thanks for the tour of an area I've never been to ! I was taken by photo #3 which prompted a blog from me. So I'll see your water hole No.9 and raise you
cheers Danny

Sharkbytes said...

I just came over from Fungal Threads. Sad to hear that you also have the same issues with off-road vehicles that we deal with. But what a wonderful place for a walk!

Lee said...

I noticed the smoke from burning heather the other week. At least this activity is beneficial for the hiker, unlike the use of Landrovers and motorbikes all over the place.

The Odyssee said...

Hi Tony,
You must have felt much brighter later. You had good weather in comparison to us.

Lonewalker said...

Not wishing to be contentious on my first ever post here and I've always wondered about the history of the numbered cups - I'd always assumed they were cut for the grouse rather than drove animals or pack horses - mainly because of their size.
I covered them in one of my blog posts a while ago and did some googling - I seem to remember reading somewhere they were cut as part of a job creation scheme by the landowner during a period of depression to keep local workers employed - the numbers were assigned so workers wouldn't be double paid.
Whatever they are they are an interesting diversion to see how many one can find.