Monday, 7 January 2013

#14 Cowm Resevoir and Healey Dell

#14 Cowm Reservoir and Healey Dell

Distance - 7.83 Miles
Ascent - 282 Metres

Second walk in a week, I must be ill!  Yet again I was trying to tire out the dog and myself, but failed again on one count!  Those collies have too much energy.  I started the walk by again going round Cowm.  The weather was a little better, the cloud base was higher and the hilltops revealed themselves. 
Cowm Reservoir
I actually did 2 laps of the res, mainly because the dog likes chasing a ball!   From the res it's a short but flat walk along the valley to the Healey Dell nature reserve.  This part of the valley was heavily used during the industrial revolution and it's impact is noticeable.
The main path through Healey Dell is along an old railway line, so it's flat and good underfoot.  It was pretty damp however and the dog was filthy, which got me put in the dog house! 
Can we play ball again?
One of the most striking features of the dell is the 30 metre tall, 8 arched viaduct which crosses the river Spodden.  Surrounded by large trees the viaduct looms above the valley floor, which is also full of industrial relics.  The river provided power for many industries and ruins of building can be seen. 
The Viaduct

Dropping down from the viaduct (not literally! via a nice set of stairs!) takes you to the valley bottom and alongside the Spodden.  This usually unremarkable river springs to life as it drops from Broadley station through a narrow channel.  Helped by recent rains the waterfalls tumbled with a vigor that was lacking on my last visit a number of years ago.  Whilst nothing amazing they are nicely hidden away.


I was planning to make the walk a little longer but the OK weather was turning damp and the dog was wet enough!  So I turned back hoping to get a nice hot pork sandwich but as with all things in little villages they close when they want and at 3pm my pork cravings were dashed!

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