|Grouse shooters' cabin in Sugden Clough|
On the day of the mountain hares, I was up in an area of moorland which was once used for training tank regiments. That was in World War II but even today evidence of those times remains. Somewhere there's even a rusty old tank still stuck in a bog but I didn't see it.
I made my way past the grouse shooters' cabin in Sugden Clough and then up to the summit of Pike Lowe. Its impressive cairn sits atop a Bronze Age burial site. By now, there were no paths - just open moorland with tussocky grasses, heather, rivulets and spongy bogs. Fortunately I had brought a compass to guide me across the area as I sought to capture more squares for the geograph project.
At one point, my right leg sank into a hidden bowl of peaty porridge - right up to the knee but bravely I struggled on, passing long broken walls that were probably targeted by passing tanks seventy years ago. I saw the remains an odd, fairly modern structure by Ewden Height and went over to investigate. Later I discovered it had once been a specially constructed target facility.
|Remains of the tank target facility|
On this walk I saw no other people but, in addition to the two mountain hares, I did see a lizard and several grouse. When disturbed, the cackling birds suddenly rise up out of the heather and give you quite a shock. Little do they know that their days are numbered before tweedy men with rifles blast them to smithereens before returning to the shooters' cabin for glasses of fine whisky and boastful banter. "I say Archibald, how many did you bag today?"
|Approaching the cairn on Pike Lowe|
|Pike Lowe cairn - the very top stone is mine|
|Evidence of former sheep farming|
|Sometimes featureless - the moors have a subtle beauty|
|End of the walk at Upper Midhope|