Freeze-up is wel­come re­lease from the mud

Macclesfield Express - - EAST CHESHIRE HOSPICE - FRANK GAY

AF­TER the cold­est night of the win­ter so far, the ground was firmly frozen as 18 East Cheshire Ram­blers set out from Teggs Nose re­cently on a week­end walk – a wel­come and pleas­ant change from the wet and muddy con­di­tions ex­pe­ri­enced of late.

Ini­tially the walk fol­lowed the Grit­stone Trail north.

Nor­mally there are great views across the Cheshire plain and be­yond but this morn­ing mist shrouded the land­scape and it was just pos­si­ble to make out the dark shape of Manch­ester’s Beetham Tower in the far dis­tance.

Af­ter de­scend­ing into Rainow our route fol­lowed the track around the foot of White Nancy to Ker­ridge.

Walk­ing through the fields we en­coun­tered a flock of red­wing, who are reg­u­lar win­ter vis­i­tors to this cor­ner of Cheshire.

Our path lay past Swanscoe Hall and along Well Lane to Higher Hurds­field.

Road­side signs warned of a flood but it had sub­sided, for­tu­nately.

The path around Cliff Hill gave us splen­did views of Mac­cles­field’s mod­ern in­dus­tries, es­pe­cially Astra Zeneca and the Hurds­field In­dus­trial Es­tate.

Back to more ru­ral views we pass through a farm yard where the calves are safely pro­tected from the win­ter’s cold.

Af­ter the farm we reach a path which would have been the mud­di­est sec­tion of the route if the tem­per­a­ture had been above freez­ing.

A cou­ple of mi­nor roads and a track took us back to Teggs Nose and a well-earned cup of tea be­side the warm­ing heat of the café’s log burner.

For more de­tails of East Cheshire Ram­blers’ pro­gramme of week­end and mid­week win­ter walks go to ram­blerseastcheshire.

●» The ram­blers file along the foot of Ker­ridge Ridge

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