|Walk:||White Coppice, Dean Black Brook, Great Hill, Round Loaf, Hurst Hill, Grain Pole Hill, Pikestones, Moor Road, Stronstrey Bank|
|Start Point:||White Coppice||Grid Ref:||SD 618 190|
|Distance:||6.6 miles||Ascent:||950 feet|
|Weather:||A dry day with some sun in the morning|
On my own
|Comments:||Having previously searched for the Pikestones on 26th February and not found them, I did some more research and found two other tops to explore, Hurst Hill and Grain Pole Hill. I planned to visit Great Hill first, taking a different route to the one I usually follow, via Dean Black Brook. This started out as a wide grassy path but soon dwindled to a narrow rocky path. Arriving at a rocky outcrop the path looked impossible to follow but I found another path which led higher up the banking. Eventually I left the path to join the more usual route on to Great Hill. Following the flagged path to the stile I then branched off to walk to Round Loaf. From there I headed WSW to Hurst Hill. I eventually found a cairn that was in a poor state of repair. My route then led just North of West to Grain Pole Hill where there was a more defined summit point and cairn. I then trekked just East of South to find the Pikestones. As I had come armed with a grid reference for them I was able to find them easily. The route between Round Loaf and the Pikestones was mainly through pathless hummocky grass, rather wet at times. From the Pikestones I followed a path to Jepson's Gate and along the road past the Manor House. I continued along the road and took the path through the woodland to meet Stronstrey Bank and back to White Coppice.|
Scroll down to see photos of the walk
Dean Black Brook with its initially clear path . . .
but at the rocky outcrop the gap between rocks is just too big (though you can't tell from this photo)
Another path leads you higher up the banking . . .
and meanders up and down alongside the brook
From Great Hill Jubilee Tower looks within easy reach . . .
especially when I zoom in on it
The sun brightens up the cross shelter on Great Hill
Heading for Round Loaf . . .
and zooming back to it from Hurst Hill
The cairn on Hurst Hill leaves much to be desired . . .
and from Grain Pole Hill Healey Nab is in view . . .
as are Anglezarke and Rivington Reservoirs
Hurst Hill from the walk between Grain Pole Hill and the Pikestones
The Pikestones - with the spiral shaped carving added by vandals . . .
The stones are the remains of a 5,000 year old Neolithic long barrow, or burial chamber . . .
and are protected by English Heritage
A nearby board . . .
gives more information about what it would have been like . . .
together with a plan drawn during excavation at the site . . .
and an artist's impression of the original burial cairn
Manor House Farm . . .
and from the bridge across Dean Black Brook you can just see the path I started on