The Pennine moorlands around Burnley must rate as the most under rated countryside in the UK. Yet as this thrilling ascent of one of the high hills shows the area provides everything a walker desires – a sense of challenge, wide spaces and tremendous views.
Distance: 4 ½ miles 7.7k
Time: 2 ½ - 3 ½ hours
Summary: Strenuous to the Pike and then easy.
Map: OS OL 21 The South Pennines
1. From the Ram continue along the A646 towards Todmordern for almost 500yds.
(This will necessitate switching sides of the road to make use of the pavement). Just pass a bus stop turn right onto a woodland drive leading down to a large house.
As the drive swings left keep ahead on a track leading down to a footbridge.
Follow the path along a walled section to a kissing gate leading out
on a grassy hillside. Turn right to climb the steep path.
The path is clear and well waymarked.
After three hundred yards to reaches a path junction on a broad shelf below Thieveley Scout.
and follow the path steeply up with a fence to the left. (This is the strenuous bit). After a track
the path becomes less steep and less clear but maintaining the same direction keep climbing until the trig point comes into sight.
3. The views cover a wide expanse of the South Pennines and East Lancashire. There follows a superb ridge walk over Deerplay Moor. Cross the fence by a ruined wall at a stile to the left of the trig point
turn right and follow the fence and wall north westwards along the broad moorland ridge. After 800yds the track crosses a stream at the top of Black Clough and then continues to a gate at a junction of walls.
Through this keep ahead until you arrive at a wooden gate just before the A671 Bacup Road.
4. Turn right onto the Pennine Bridleway. You now follow this long distance trail as it descends to Holme Chapel. After passing through a wooden gate
the track heads briefly north before swinging east above Easden Clough
on a broad farm road.
Before reaching a gate turn left following the way below the farm at Cow Side. This puts you on a broad green lane.
Keep on this to a point where it turns left in front of a wooden gate. Go through the gate (close to a memorial to Mary Towneley)
turn left and on a steeper path head downhill with a fence to the left. As you near a farm
join a farm track to reach a junction
with the Burnley Way.
Scout Farm. After the farm the trail continues parallel to the railway before passing underneath
it close to Buckley Wood. Soon after this turn left
on a broad track leading to Holme Chapel.
The Ram (See www.theramburnley.co.uk ) Tel: 01282 459091 Since parking is not easy in Holme Chapel it may be an idea to combine a walk with a visit to the Inn. (Readers should seek permission before the walk).