Monday 12th June 2023
Monthly Long Walk: Clough Head, Thirteen Stones Hill, and Troy Quarry.
Only eight walkers braved the heat to explore the historic remains on Thirteen Stone Hill. We started the walk at Clough Head Information Centre and Café, on Grane Road, Haslingden, and headed towards Jamestone Quarry. Just before the quarry we climbed up a narrow footpath that took us up to the Rossendale Way, which is also the route of the West Pennine Way (WPW), on this section of the path. We followed the WPW until it joins a track, coming up from the quarries, where we turned left and headed up the track until we found the path leading onto Thirteen Stone Hill.
This seemingly drab section of moorland was once a spectacular prehistoric site, with stones standing five feet high and arranged in an ellipse, with five stones on the east of the axis, and eight on the west, thought to be positioned to observe astronomical phenomena in the night skies. It is not known when or why the stones were destroyed, but it is thought that it was to discourage peoples fascination with the occult. Lidar scans, of the site suggest that there is potential for an archaeological dig in the area.
After spending time exploring the site, and taking an early coffee stop, we headed off the hill in the direction of Windy Harbour Farm. Once having negotiated the very difficult stiles we made our way down the farm track, for a short distance before joining a path on our right that took us to Mary’s Wood and another chance for refreshments. Continuing along the path we passed Ley End Farm, on our right before climbing up to Troy Quarry where we enjoyed our lunch overlooking the disused site which nature miraculously transformed into this glorious vision .
After lunch we headed down to Heap Clough, and the access road to Jamestone Quarry where joined a footpath that took us back to Clough Head Café, having covered 6.5 very hot miles.