Sunday, October 12, 2008

A new challenge.

Earlier in the week, I met up with K. Again, the weather was better than the forecast suggested it might be. After a wettish start and before a late afternoon downpour, we had the best of the day enjoying a fine afternoon by Rivelin Reservoir and Wyming Brook. The leaves are just starting to turn, so I've made a bin to collect leaves for leafmould - something I've been meaning to do for many years.
Having sent off for and received maps/guides for the Barnsley Boundary Walk and the Trans Pennine Trail, I decided I couldn't wait to get started on the next challenge. Not that I need much motivating at the moment with plenty of time on my hands, but as the prospect of work looms, I will need A project that doesn't require me to think where to go next. I regret not having chronicled the Sheffield Country Walk fully, and the Penistone line walk not at all, so I am resolving to record the Barnsley Boundary Walk in words and photos, at least. One of the challenges with linear walks (OK, the whole thing is circular, but each leg is end to end) is getting to and from either end of the walk. The first leg (Ingbirchworth to Cannon Hall) was a good indication of this. From the range of possibilities, I decided that the train to Penistone, and a 2 mile lead in was the best option. There looked to be some routes which avoided the main road, but not wanting to walk too far before starting the walk proper, I went for the shortest route. Fortunately, there was a pavement for the entire length, the road was not too busy at that time of day, and the views from the road more than compensated for the tarmac under foot. The bad news is that I relied on the walk description to find the start of the walk rather than look at the map. The Rose and Crown Pub was the landmark I was looking for. I sensed something was wrong when I passed the carved stone sign that marked the end of the village. It turned out the pub had been demolished to make way for a development of town houses. A sign of the times! It might be interesting to see how many remain unsold by the time I complete the circuit. That problem overcome, I had no futher problems finding my way on what proved to be a lovely walk with stunning views. The area has a timeless quality about it, townhouses notwithstanding. Ingbirchworth, Upper Denby and the tiny hamlet of Gunthwaite with its medieval barn have many old but beautifully maintained buildings, and are set in lovely rolling countryside. It was very wet under foot, but the stunning weather compensated for this. The homeward journey was more successful that the outward one. A bus from Cawthorne to Barnsley coincided with my arrival at the end of my route, as did a train from Barnsley to Sheffield. It was also a day of coincidences; I ran into a former work aquaintance in Penistone, and a former colleague returning from a conference in Leeds on the train home.

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