Trek up Highest Mountain in Peak District – Kinder Scout
After visiting the little boys room I felt like I had forgotten something, something essential and much needed for a trek such as this, it kept bugging me as we were leaving the car park area then suddenly it was there staring us in the face, flapping in the breeze on every turn of its page as the bloke holding it in his hands looked on its splendour like it was treasure map of tutan karman or something to that effect. Stevie and I both looked at each other and realised this was going to have to be one of those days where asking for directions was going to be the order of the day (and as we all know blokes and asking for directions don’t always mix) anyway we got the down low from the kind map geezer who was apparently going to visit all the plane wreck sites dotted around Kinder, he looked a little excited by this so we quickly moved on.
We headed up the main street, past the pub and took a wide path a few feet later which dropped into a small wooded valley where a wooden bridge led us across a stream and a wide stone track then took us over a calm looking field. As we turned right we saw the immense size of Kinder Scout and pondered the direct ascent, but quickly came to realise that we didn’t know if is was Kinder Scout or if indeed it actually led anywhere, so we opted for the leisurely scenic route and played it safe for a while.
I must say the whether was absolutely brilliant and couldn’t have wished for any better. The people there were so helpful with their advice and guidance some of which we took and some not so much, its funny because now I look back on they were right on all counts, maybe advice and guidance doesn’t work on men like me and Stevie, maybe there is an in built mechanism that shuts off when someone is telling them something useful or maybe it just the kid inside them that knows the fire burns but they want to know how much they will burn, I guess we will never know the true answer.
Anyway, it was a fair old walk along Grinds Brook when suddenly out of the blue Stevie decided to up the ante on the leisurely experience and suggested we ‘Make it a little interesting’ as he looked up at the steep gradient of Golden Clough to the side of Grinds Brook (A few minutes earlier a very nice man and his wife had stopped to show us their beautiful gold rimmed map and basically pooh hooed the idea of scaling Golden Clough. First burn to Stevie!)
It’s at this point I refer you to the video footage to make your own mind up as to whether this was a good decision or a decision based on something else.
There are times in a persons life where you say I won’t take the chance this time, maybe next time. I had such a chance offered to me in the guise of a small crevice that from a distance looked quite large to me. I chose to take a different path, but no, I wasn’t getting away with this minor chink in the armour, oh no, ‘What you doing’ asked Stevie, waving me over to the supposed tiny gap, I proceeded to explain the whys and where fors of me not going over the crevice but it fell swiftly on deaf ears. Swallowing any dignity I had left I stepped across it only to get an earful of yellow belly custard and chicken pie thrown in for good measure. Good times!
The walk back down Jacobs Ladder was an interesting trek with its artistic array of dishevelled pavings which were so homely to our feet that had travelled a few miles in the glorious sun, trampled through hard core stone and waded through marsh bog (Twenty minutes previous, another kind gentleman offered his advice of a more pleasant way back to the village, but I wanted to see Jacobs Ladder. Second burn to Me!)
I was really impressed with the cyclists riding up Jacobs Ladder, they must have buns of steel and a will of iron (no pun intended) to get to the top in one piece, they want congratulating after all the hard work of slogging it out to reach the summit, brave men and women in deed. On such cyclists made their way up while we were on the descend, his legs span like a Katherine wheel and he really was putting all his efforts in. ‘Can’t you get it in a higher gear than that’ was all I heard from Stevie then in a high pitched voice the cyclist screamed ‘I’ve been riding all the way to the top gives us break’, I creased up laughing, it might have been one of those situations where you had to have been there to have seen the funny side to it or maybe not.
The trek back to the car seemed to take for ever, probably our brains playing tricks on us, dun, dun, dah, perhaps this was Kinders Scouts idea of a joke to remind us to bring a damn map next time, who knows, but you could have cooked a sausage on my feet after we got back to the village.
I would definitely recommend the Peak district if only for their short steep gradient areas and wonderful landscape views from above.