Jan 25 2014

Walk 73 – Rod’s Gift

Rods Gift

route: rod moor from dungworth
Date: 25th january 2014
distance: 6.3 miles
ascent: 880 feet
time: 2 hrs 50 mins
walkers: abigail, dave, leanne, sandra & simon

Dungworth would be the start point for our first visit to the Peak District in 2014. Under normal circumstances we would have had a leisurely start but today we were in a bit of a rush. I had emailed the pub earlier in the week to ask if we were ok to leave our cars while we went off in search of Rod Moor trig point. The reply confirmed we were fine to leave the vehicles but also mentioned that there was a pheasant shoot at 10am starting from the trig point. After careful consideration it was decided we would move our start time from 9am to 8.40am giving us chance to get to the trig first. Obviously the playground theory of we were here first would be applied and they would have to wait for us to leave.
73rd Walk 173rd Walk 2We wrapped up ready for the off, I even double fleeced as it was cold when caught in the wind, which was a first for me. It wasn’t cold enough to cover up my legs though. We left Dungworth and soon joined Sykehouse Lane as the road began to climb gradually before we came to a footpath sign. Leanne was over the stile and nearly on her way before being halted by my call of “map check”. The path would lead us to Hall Broom Wood before turning back on itself to come back to Load Brook and this was our initial plan. It is always preferable to be walking on green stuff rather than roads even if the route is slightly longer, but not today. We took the decision to stay on the road in order to make sure we reached the trig before the shotguns were going off. Leanne climbed back over the stile and we headed for Game Lane.73rd Walk 373rd Walk 4As we approached Load Brook the road dipped down before climbing back up to some farm buildings we could see on the horizon. We knew that once there, Rod Moor trig wouldn’t be too far away and we kept going without glancing at the time, surely we would be there first…73rd Walk 5Upon reaching the farm buildings we found a sign across the road saying road closed. We assumed this was because of the shoot, but it didn’t apply to people on foot so onwards and upwards we went. We were passed by a few runners and a couple on bicycles all of whom we said morning to. To our right was a wall preventing us from getting on to Rod Moor although no doubt we could had we really been desperate to do so. We passed the walls of the small cemetery, eventually coming to a farm track off to the right. The track climbed further as we went through a gate and out on to the moor and still no sound of guns or even sight of anybody at all for that matter.73rd Walk 673rd Walk 7I checked my GPS for a bearing then we made our way through the heather towards the trig. It had been a while but I soon began to experience the scratching and scraping against my legs and knew from experience I would be left with lots of marks when I got home. We reached the corner wall of the cemetery and from there we could see the trig and nothing else, so we made our way over to celebrate a job well done. 73rd Walk 873rd Walk 973rd Walk 10It was 9.58am when we reached the trig and the so called pheasant shoot clearly wasn’t going to commence at 10am. We took our pictures and retraced our steps back through the heather and out to the farm track, before turning right and heading down towards Crawshaw Farm. 73rd Walk 1173rd Walk 12The excitement of beating the shoot to the trig was obviously too much for Abigail who was by now fast asleep by the time we reached the corner of Crawshaw Wood. The map showed that the path cut over a field avoiding the farm, but when we got there we found two planks of wood across the stile. A few yards to the left was a sign saying no access which wasn’t ideal as the route around would add miles to our journey.73rd Walk 1373rd Walk 14After a short discussion, Beaky was all for crossing anyway, but me being ever the diplomat said why don’t we walk into the farm and ask. L’Autobus stayed put as I followed Beaky into the farm yard where he soon spotted someone shuffling some farm equipment around. Beaky mentioned the closed path which turned out not to be closed, the planks were there to stop sheep jumping out of the field. The no access sign related to the track into the farm yard to avoid people wandering in when heavy machinery is about.73rd Walk 15He was super helpful, really friendly and even had a little chuckle with us. He told us that as we were here we may as well go through the yard and we waved the girls down to follow us. We thanked him once again then made our way through the farm where we found a barge that seemed to be a little lost.73rd Walk 1673rd Walk 17By now we were on our way back to the pub and we gave the girls the option of continuing on the track on dropping down into the woods on our right. The answers was “always wood” whatever that means?! We entered Royds Clough Plantation and followed the path as it dropped down towards the stream running through the trees. One thing that I am finally getting used to after about 8 or 9 walks is making sure I duck enough so Abigail avoids the branches. Fortunately we have had no accidents so far and long may that continue. 73rd Walk 1873rd Walk 19It wasn’t always easy going with some places being very muddy and wet. We laughed as we discussed a really muddy path on the way to Win Hill back in 2011. On that particular occasion Ramblo couldn’t keep her footing and ended up disappearing behind a bush just leaving her feet visible. Leanne tried to help her up but had to be careful to avoid being pulled over and I stood taking pictures. Happy days 🙂73rd Walk 2073rd Walk 21We left the plantation via a stile over the wall, but it was after a few trial runs due to Abigail laughing as we went up the ladder. Once over we made our way across a field to a gate in the corner where we found an ingenious way to ensure the gate remained shut.73rd Walk 2273rd Walk 2373rd Walk 24We had seen a similar device on the first day of our four day Herriot Way adventure back in 2011 but nothing since then. After exiting the field ahead of us myself and Beaky discussed a route back but once again decided to let the girls be the masters of their own destiny. If they choose the route they can’t complain of it being too steep, too long or through terrain they don’t want to cross. To be fair it isn’t often they grumble and it is light hearted when they do, or at least most of the time.73rd Walk 2573rd Walk 26The girls opted not to take the more direct route of Corker Lane and we instead took another road that runs sort of parallel. It was thought that we could then do a little more “off roading” to come back towards Dungworth which was fine with me. 73rd Walk 2773rd Walk 2873rd Walk 29We descended into Ughill Woods and for the first time we heard the crack of gun shots in the distance. It was a little after their planned start time but we weren’t concerned as we were a long way away now. I was actually glad as for some strange reason I thought the noise of the guns may have been something Abigail found funny, but they still seemed fairly loud from a distance so I had to revise my thinking. In fact had we been closer it may well have woke her from yet another snooze.73rd Walk 3073rd Walk 31The climb out of Ughill Wood was fairly steep and it caught me off guard a little. Since the turn of the year my mind has been of the 40 mile Lyke Wake Walk we are doing in June. By the time we got to the top of the climb I doubted that big walk would be possible but I soon began to think more rationally. The climbs have always caught me out yet I have covered large distances on walks before. I may take a little longer than others but so what, it has never been a race. Also, I have planned all walks to build towards June and increase in difficulty slowly rather than push too hard too soon. Last year we were mainly doing the Leeds Country Way and while that was great to accommodate our newest Badger without doing walks that were too difficult, it had meant I had lost a little of my hill fitness. By the time June comes around I will be feeling confident though and that is exactly what I told myself.73rd Walk 3273rd Walk 33As we made our way back to the pub my legs felt fine which was another reminder that climbs are sometimes going to test me and push me but once at the top they are soon forgotten. Within a quarter of an hour we had the pub in sight and it was two minutes before opening time, magic or what?! At precisely that time Abigail woke up which was perfect timing too. We changed in the car park and went for a drink and ended up having lunch too which was a nice bonus. I saw today as the first day of planning for the Lyke Wake Walk. From here on my sole walking focus for the year was that walk. Maybe that was putting all my eggs in one basket, but I would still enjoy and savour all each walk had to offer just as I had today. 2014 was going to be a great year for the Badgers!

Sir Edmund

rod moor routemap

rod moor routeprofile


  1. Sharon Hamlin

    Hi! Really wonderful.After reading your journey I would love to do that.Thanks for sharing your experience with us. The baby is really very cute & how much she is enjoying the outing her smile is prove that… 🙂

  2. Sir Edmund

    Hi Sharon,

    I have to say the walk to Rod Moor wasn’t anything overly special but it is always good to be out and about. 🙂 Abigail always used to enjoy being carried around and was often smiling. It’s a shame she isn’t as enthusiastic now she has to walk herself 😉

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