MONDAY 4th MARCH 2019
Monthly Long Walk: Greemount, Kirklees Valley, Walshaw, Ainsworth, Affetside and Greenmount
Today’s walk started in dry and cold conditions with the promise of rain later. Six of us left Greenmount Old School and headed along the track that leads down into Kirklees Valley. Just before the viaduct, over Island Lodge, we turned left making a detour to check on the condition of one of the trees growing on the island, as it is in danger of collapsing into the lodge and taking part of the island with it.
Funding is being sought locally so that the tree can be cut down to avoid any further damage to the island. After a pleasant wonder through the woods we returned back onto the track turning right on the footpath leading to Woolfold.
Once across Tottington Road we made our way along the footpath which leads to Walshaw, passing through the fields which if the local planners have their way will be covered in houses, with this glorious sight lost for ever.
On reaching Walshaw we crossed Lowercroft Road and turned right into Slaidburn Drive following a track, on the right, for a short distance before passing through a kissing gate on our left that leads to Lowercroft Reservoirs, which use to be known as Whitehead Lodges. Walking along the edge of the reservoirs under a bright blue sky we were again reminded how beautiful the countryside is at this time of year.
Keeping to the path on the left-hand side of the reservoirs we headed for Ainsworth passing the building on our right that was the sight of the old isolation hospital. From here we made our way through Barrack Fold Farm and on towards Harwood Golf Course. Once across the golf course we headed for Old Holts, crossing Harwood Road and taking a footpath on our left that climbed up through the fields. It was here that the weather changed with the blue skies being replaced with heavy hail showers. Once reaching Tottington Road, Harwood, we turned left onto a track leading to Lower Knots where we turned right and climbed up the footpath leading to Top O’ Knotts. Turning left we continued up the hill until we reached Affetside.
Our plan was that we would stop at the Pack Horse for lunch however, we were disappointed as the pub was closed due to there being no water supply in Affetside, on that day.
We decided that we would make our way to Hawkshaw, and the Red Loin for lunch. After a short discussion we agreed to go by the shortest route, although it was the steepest, as we were all ready for lunch. After satisfying our hunger we left the warmth of the pub and made our way back to Greenmount having covered 11 miles.