Grimwith Reservoir 09-08-2017 – Leader Derek

Grimwith Reservoir 09-08-2017 – Leader Derek

At the start of the day, 17 windblown ramblers (including Jean’s granddaughter Sophie – nice to see her again) sang ‘Happy Birthday’ to Joan, who was presented with a card signed by all present.  At the first break, Roy kindly distributed deliciously sweet dates, and Derek even more kindly distributed lovely Lindt chocolates.  Suspicions were aroused by this, and it turned out that Derek had also had a birthday recently, though nobody knew what number was attached!  Spirits were high, therefore, as we set off across the dam – with lovely views all round – before turning south along Hartlington Moor Lane, before dropping down to Hebden for our break alongside the river.

After the break we headed north, climbing into the very extensive lead mining area that once sustained this part of the world.  Although now largely grassed over, the spoil heaps gave the landscape something of a lunar quality, while the various mine adits – and especially the flue leading down from the impressive chimney (where Steve took lunch all alone, the rest of us having hidden from view in the mine workings!) – were quite remarkable.  Derek tells me that Grassington Moor has a long history of lead mining, with records dating back to the 15th Century, when the monks of Fountains Abbey worked a smelt mill.  You can read more about the Cupola Smelt Mill and its associated chimney and flue here.

Having picked up Steve at the chimney after lunch, we headed north east across access land to reach the highest point of the walk at a little over 1300 feet, but feeling pretty warm in the nice sunshine.  After passing a small reservoir, we followed Blea Beck, slowly dropping across Sand Haw Moss and Thompson Hole Moss, with their associated sogginess that caught Sophie out a couple of times, as you will see from the pictures!  Then it was east to the edge of Grimwith Reservoir, after which we followed its western side back across the dam to the cars.  (Thanks to those who donated the remains of their water bottles to fill up my radiator, which had been complaining all the way from Rawtenstall about having too little water!)  Refreshments were taken at the Old School Tea Room Café in Hebden to end a really interesting and unusual walk, thanks to Derek.  Good luck for the cataract op tomorrow, Derek.  How have you managed to lead us so well with effectively only one eye?

(Write up Arnold, superb pics (mostly) Judy; can you see the join?  Appended here are the route stats and profile.)

Slideshow below, but if you wish to see a static view of the pics all in one go, then click here.


  1. Thanks yet again Arnold for the report and Judy for the photos. Op went quite well; however, I will have to gird my loins for when we next meet, as you all will look different ~ could be a shock! I certainly got a surprise when I looked in the mirror ~ I looked haggard! Currently researching cosmetic surgery clinics!

  2. Excellent walk on a fine, but breezy day. Thank you Derek and good luck with your op. Thank you to our photographers for some very good photos and to Arnold for his concise write up.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *