Friday, 27 March 2015

Ram's Clough - A Quick Visit

I'm lucky to live on the fringes of the Peak District, and even better, a few areas with pretty good scrambles. So Saturday morning, following an eight hour shift at work, I headed out to Dove Stone Reservoir. My target was Ram's Clough, a little documented Clough that leads up onto Wimberry Moss.

The route to the clough is very straight forward. Having parked in the car park at the head of Dove Stone Reservoir, near the sailing club, I headed up the narrow road past the sailing club. Just before the bridge over Chew Brook there is a break in the wall on the right that is the start of a path up through Chew Piece Plantation.
Where your route crosses the Oldham Way, Ram's Clough is clearly in view. It's not a particularly rocky clough, more a boulder strewn channel. And the boulders are big, probably glacial moraine.
It had started off as a pretty dull morning, but as I worked my way up the clough the sky started to break. It was turning into a great morning. Worth the tiredness.
Looking ahead, up the steep slope, the Indian's Head was clearly in view, such a distinct feature of the area.
Looking back down the clough it's clear what the character of this clough is. It's in no way a technical challenge, more a physical fitness exercise. I think this may become a regular challenge to monitor my fitness.
Now looking up the slope and the terrain has become a little more technical, but still pretty straight forward. In these situations it is more important to ensure you don't over balance backwards than anything else. If you fall down here, it may be a long tumble and some serious injuries.
As you proceed up this more rocky section you have a really nice, clear view across to Charnel Clough with an indicator of how steep the slope is very visible. To the other side is a beautiful view across Dove Stone Reservoir.
On the top it can be very windy, and it was very windy on this outing. But the atmospheric conditions, ignoring the cloud was very good. So good I could just make out the peaks of North Wales, possibly the Clwydian Range, maybe someone may know for certain.
I headed east around the edge to Chew Green and down the gully there. It can get quite steep this gully. Since it is grassy, if it is wet, it can be a little tricky. Slips should be expected if it is wet, so care should be taken as here again, a tumble could lead to a long bounce down the hill, with injury probable. Going down hill always requires more care, especially when facing outward from the slope.

Once at the bottom, it's an easy walk back to Chew Road, or along the Oldham Way back to the car park. Wilderness Gully West is the next challenge in my sites.

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