Rain, Mist, Wind and Peat Bogs – a hike on Marsden Moor

I headed off around 7.00 a.m this morning for a circular hike around part of Marsden Moor and picking up the Pennine Way for part of it. See my last post for the route I took. Well, mostly, I did actually get slightly lost (more of that in a mo) but it was essentially the same route and around 15 miles.

Some of it was harder than I expected though, because it rained from the moment I left the house until about four hours in. And at one point, up on some crags looking down to that-there Lancashire, it was a true gale. I nearly blew over a couple of times. Its getting me in to the ‘can’t be any worse than this ‘ mindset for the Yorkshire 3 Peaks though, so that’s a good thing about it I guess. And there was a moment, when I was sat with my flask of coffee and some snacks, behind a big outcrop of rock, with the wind and rain battering the other side of it – that it felt great to be the only person up there at that time. The revelry was broken as always by an impatient dog.

My dog Brodie near the Oldham Way / Pennine Way rocks
One bedraggled but impatient to get going again dog

So, yes I got lost at one point later on and veered off the Pennine Way onto what I think became a path for White Moss – another part of the Moors near me. And that path disappeared as the area was kind of flooded so I spent half an hour or so guessing the route and avoiding the boggiest bits. Not fun and I was also mindful of the little nesting birdies so tried to stick to less grassy areas. By the way, despite the rain, despite the driving wind, the cotton grass and he rust colours interspersed with occasional vivid green grasses looked beautiful. Rugged, damn grim , but beautiful.

I wasn’t in danger of getting truly lost as I knew I’d reach the Holmfirth to Greenfield road at some point But (BUT) .. I didn’t take a map with me. Had a compass in the backpack but not the map. derrr.

ThingsΒ  learned today:
1. My boots (Karrimor Vibrams) leak .. in rain and also really saturated peat and on paths that were more like streams in places but still, they leak. And I waterproofed them recently. hmm. Something to think about as I’m doing a few walks soon. They’re actually pretty new but have partly suede uppers. Okay for light drizzle but obviously useless in real rain.
2. My Jack Wolfskin lightweight breathable jacket is awesome.
3. Gators are a good idea (I had some on) BUT need to repair them now as the [expletive deleted] Dog , in one of her lurch-to-one-side-suddenly jaunts nearly pulled me into a peat ditch (saw a sheep in the distance). Which meant I did a quick side step and caught one of the elastic drawstring things under the strap of the other foot. Luckily the elastic gave way and I didn’t go head first into the water logged ditch. Near miss.
4. Even if it is driving rain, always keep looking up and around,Β  so you see the sheep before your stupid dog does. That way you won’t get your arm suddenly wrenched out its socket or break your gators πŸ™‚
5. Take a map dude.

So, six hours out and about in crappy weather but it all gets me in the zone for other walks planned this summer.Β  And I enjoyed it really.

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Marsden Moor grasses
I love the green against the miles of rusty, water-soaked peat heather and grasses. Photo via my phone camera.

4 thoughts on “Rain, Mist, Wind and Peat Bogs – a hike on Marsden Moor”

  1. Beautiful photo, and good training! My Β£20 looks well spent. (But I can still demand it back if I think you’re slacking. Having given you the carrot, I only have the stick option left).

    If you want some company, I’m just starting to think about my training for a big trip in November, so give me a shout. I’m away a lot, and I know you like the alone-ness – but mutual encouragement is also good πŸ™‚

    The Rhinog trip sounds great. Envy. We’re heading up to Torridon in September.


    • Thanks Jenny and I’m making sure I’m not going to have to pay you back πŸ™‚
      Can feel it a bit today, (unplanned) negotiation of peat bogs is hard on the legs.

      I’m going to do a few weekend hikes so I’ll drop you a note. I do like the solitude but not all the time by any means so sounds good πŸ™‚

      After the Yorkshire 3 peaks I’m in theory doing the national one mid Sept I think so will be training up till then.. yikes.

  2. Hi there,
    Thanks for the pingback which led me here, I really enjoyed this post and can relate to the soggy boots, soggy bogs scenario very much. Hope the training goes well and good luck with your next adventure, which I look forward to reading about πŸ™‚

    • Thanks Michelle, I do need to think about another pair of boots maybe , it does tend to rain a lot around here πŸ™‚
      The Zemanta plug-in suggested a few ‘related’ blogs but yours jumped out when I started reading it so I linked to it.
      I don’t know your part of the world although I was conceived on Skye as my folks lived there briefly.. and have family in Scotland but shamefully never got that far! So I’m going to read more posts and I love your descriptions I’ve read so far. Cheers


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