JOGLE Day 36 06/06/17 Crowden – Edale 18 miles

Relying on photos from other sources now but will find a way round it. In short this morning was probably the worst weather I have ever walked in. It started ok in Crowden – heavy rain and some gusting wind as Shirley and I met Chris by Torside reservoir and we plodded up the steep climb to Clough Edge. We could see the wind and cloud swirling around as we negotiated the slippy path and descended to cross the raging Wildboar Grain. A couple of brave leaps later we were heading up towards Bleaklow Head with the strong wind and rain at our backs, not realising how sheltered we still were. As we emerged onto the summit we became exposed to the 60mph gusts and followed the path/stream down towards the main road 3 miles or so away. We had to cross the stream, Hern Clough, several times as it was impassable on the path, climbing up on to peat bogs the only option. The last mile was on a better path but totally exposed to the wind and rain coming in from the side. It was freezing cold and all three of us were feeling it. Knowing what was to come after the A57 (Mill Hill and Kinder Edge) I decided we should instead head east down the main road and take refuge in the Snake Pass Inn 3 miles along. Less than 1 hour later 3 drowned rats squelched into the warmth of the bar, ordered coffee and reassessed the situation. Shirley was struggling with her ankle, Chris was shivering like crazy and decided to call a taxi to go back to his car at the B&B in Torside. I was determined to get as close to Edale as possible without going too high and was familiar with a different route around the eastern side of Kinder plateau. I checked on my GPS and decided I was going for it. Cath arrived in Betty and took care of Shirley, made me eat two soggy sandwiches and off I went. It was another 2 miles along the A57, not too bad considering the conditions, and then a track up and around the side of the plateau, eventually turning back into the wind. Even at a lower level the wind gusts were crazy but the rain eased off so I got to Edale just before 5pm. Without elaborating why, we did not stay at the Edale campsite (simply don’t use Coopers!!), got warm, dry and fed in the Old Nags Head and found another camp site about 20 minutes drive away. So goodbye to the Pennine Way and a small celebration on passing the 700 mile mark today. Being joined by more friends, Debbie and Tony Britton tomorrow, at least it should be drier!!

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