It seems like a long and miserable time since I last did an hill walk! Actually it has been just three weeks since Chris and I climbed the not-so-mighty Great Hill I have been eager to get out on the hills ever since, targeting the two minor peaks of Harrock Hill and Parbold Hill as part of a six miles pleasant walk as the next to ‘tick off’. However, as frequent readers will have already noted; on the first available Sunday we got to our car park with the intention of setting off – but just not the fitness to do so. So we rescheduled that walk for the following weekend, either a Saturday or Sunday would suffice. This also proved to be beyond us as the cold that I was starting to succumb to the week before came back with a vengence so severe that at one time I thought that it might never go.
It’s practically gone now – thankfully. However, I do have a mental rule to the effect of ‘if an hill or hills has been targetted but not completed for two concurrent weeks then it must yield its’ position at the top of the list’. I am fully aware of how anal or even banal this sounds so I’ll break it down a bit: If you want something and are denied it on a couple of occaisions then it becomes an obsession – and that’s never a good thing!
Ultimately we are now left in the position of not knowing where to go this weekend for a walk, and, with it being so close to pay day (for both of us) then put it this way “London’s Out!” – so are The Lake District, The Peak District is always off the list, The Dales are out and so is North Wales. That doesn’t leave much…I would do Pendle again at the drop of an hat, but Chris is not as much of a fan of that area as I am. The rest of the Forest of Bowland could be accessible – I would love to go to Bleasdale again – especially pretty Parlick and soggy but solid Fair Snape Fell. Longridge – as ever, beckons but (again) every time that we set off with the intention of parking near the fell and wandering up there – we can’t get parked and end up driving to Barley for me to do Pendle once more. In the opposite direction then we’ve already done Rivington Pike a month ago so we can exclude ‘Rivvy’ as an option and as much as I would love to go to Winter Hill or Great Hill – I really am saving them for another day (the much fabled ‘Big walk on the moors’ – okay it’s much-fabled in my head alone).
The destination that I have arrived at (mentally) is the little massif surrounding Darwen (Jubilee) Tower. Here are an half dozen summits that are all around the 375-402 meters range. We have Darwen Hill itself, Cartridge Hill (the heighest of the group at 402M) Black Hill, Brown Lowe, Turn Lowe and even Wives Hill(!?). Plenty at which we can aim, a natural ridge walk doesn’t appear on the online o/s maps so it may involve a fairly undulating walk but at least the terrain should be dry(ish) if this spell of nice weather continues (shall we bet on this?)
Get directions to or from Tockholes, Darwen, Lancashire, England, BB3 0