Tuesday 8 March 2016. I guess it was too much to hope for that the sunshine and blue skies of yesterday would be repeated today and it looked as if I would be stuck in the caravan watching the film “Philomena” that I’d downloaded for a “rainy day”. I’d only watched 10 minutes or so of the film when the sun poked its head from behind the clouds and this was enough encouragement for me to get my walking gear on and to get out there. The plan was to walk out of Hathersage up to Stanage Edge, to walk along the edge and then to come back down to Hathersage.
Leaving town, I walked along the road towards Sheffield for a very short distance before turning off onto a bridleway. I’d done this section before and knew how steep it was with a climb of over 400ft in less than half a mile. It levelled off a bit as I passed the peculiar looking building of Scraperlow which is a Grade II listed farmhouse. I then descended briefly to Mitchell Field Farm before making the second ascent of the day. This was a climb of nearly 600ft between Callow Bank and Higger Tor. I took the pictures not really appreciating that it was Higger Tor that I was looking at which is odd as we walked on the other side of the hill on our post-Christmas walk from the Longshaw Estate.
The higher that I went then the deeper the snow became until a point near the top where it was at least 6” deep. It wasn’t quite crampons and ice axe conditions which was just as well as I’d left them back in the car. I did, however, have my microspikes with me and put them on for safety. From the top, I could see the weather closing in from the north and coming my way along the Hope Valley. It was time to decide whether to press on up to the nearby Stanage Edge or to cut it short and to walk back along the road to Hathersage. Prudence won out and I took the safer route back to the car. I looked back longingly up to Stanage Edge only to see it disappearing in the mist and rain. I’d walked there before and may even return later this week.
My walk, although only 5½ miles, had a total ascent of just over 1,100ft. Back in Hathersage I rewarded/consoled myself with lunch inside Outside. Those who have been will know what I mean.