Fairbrook Kinder & Snake Path - 14th April 2006
Date 14th April 2006 Description Fairbrook Kinder & Snake Path
Start Point Birchen Clough Car Park Peaks Climbed Fairbrook Naze 619m 
Total Time 5hrs 23min    
Walking Time 4hrs 13min    
Stopped Time 1hrs 10min    
Distance 10.54 miles    
Moving Average 2.5 mph    
Elevation at Start 361 metres Temperature 12°C
Total Ascent 583 metres Weather Sunny intervals
Max Elevation 621 metres Walking With No One
Birchen Clough Car Park - Fair Brook - Fairbrook Naze - Kinder Edge - Ashop Head - Snake Path - Ashop Clough - Birchen Clough Car Park

The forecast was for a lovely sunny day so I decided to head for the north side of the Kinder Plateau as I had not been in this area for some time. I also wanted to walk up Fair Brook which was the name of the company I used to work for. They had taken the name from a painting by Wilfred Ball. I started my walk from Birchen Clough Car Park which is a layby on the A57 Snake Pass road. After ignoring the lovely smells from a mobile cafe in the layby I descended via a path opposite the car park into the Snake Woodland. Once in the woodland I followed the white forest posts.

The path followed the stream through Lady Clough. Eventually I emerged out of the woodland by a wooden bridge and then followed the path back to the A57 near the Snake Pass Inn. Then opposite the Inn I descended back into woodland again and headed for the bridge across the River Ashop and into the valley of Fair Brook. This is a lovely valley with a brook with many small waterfalls and cascades. I was on the look out for an exact spot where Wilfred Ball had carried out his painting. I think I found the spot about half way up the valley but I was not totally convinced (I think I needed to be on the other side of the brook really). The path becomes quite rocky and stony towards the top. There were good views from the top of Fair Brook. The sun was in and out for much of the day so it was hard to get the perfect photo. After a short stay at the top of Fair Brook I carried on to Fairbrook Naze. I passed the rock formations at Misty Buttresses before arriving at Fairbrook Naze. There is a pedestal rock formation on the edge of the Naze which you need to descend down to slightly. I then walked along the length of Ashop Edge to Ashop Head. Along the way I passed the rock formations of Big and Little Buttresses, Black Overhangs, Bridge Chock and the famous Boxing Gloves. The path is a little indistinct as you get to the end of the edge. The whole of the walk along the edge is a mixture of good paths and negotiation the peat groughs and hags. On arriving at the end of the edge one encounters Mill Hill Rocks. There are good views to Kinder Reservoir from here. I then descended to Ashop Head (the source of the River Ashop) and the cross paths of the Pennine Way and the Snake Path. The Snake Path ascends from Hayfield and Kinder Reservoir via William Clough before descending via Ashop Clough back towards the Woodlands Valley and the Snake Inn. The latter was my route back to the car. The track starts paved but soon becomes a narrow path following the River Ashop. The path was quite boggy in places but one never felt marooned at any time. Ashop Clough is a long valley (about 4km) but the scenery is great. At the end of the valley one enters woodland once more to follow the white forest posts. There is a little climbing to do before descending back down to the stream in Lady Clough and the path back to the car at Birchen Clough. All in all it was a very enjoyable walk.
© Crown Copywright. All rights reserved. Licence number 100047125

Reference Books Used

High Peak Walks by Mark Richards (Cicerone)
Day Walks in the Peak District by Norman Taylor and Barry Pope (VG Guidebooks)
Maps Used
OL1 Explorer - Peak District (Dark Peak Area)
Stream running through Lady Clough
Stream running through Lady Clough
Footbridge over stream in Lady Clough
Edge of Snake Woodland
Snake Pass Inn
Snake Woodland
River Ashop near Fair Brook
Entering Fair Brook valley
Fair Brook with Kinder Scout on horizon
Path up Fair Brook
Fair Brook Waterfall
Higher up Fair Brook Path
Final stoney ascent of Fair Brook
Misty Buttresses from Fair Brook
Top of Fair Brook
Looking towards Fairbrook Naze
Above Egg Crag
Rocks at Misty Buttresses
Woodlands Valley from Fairbrook Naze
Pedestal at Fairbrook Naze
Looking to Fairbrook Naze from Ashop Edge
Big Buttress on Ashop Edge
Little Buttress on Ashop Edge
Black Overhangs on Ashop Edge
View towards Ashop Head from Ashop Edge
Bridge Chock on Ashop Edge
Boxing Gloves on Ashop Edge
Boxing Gloves on Ashop Edge
View along Ashop Edge to Fairbrook Naze
Summit at Mill Hill Rocks
Kinder Reservoir from Mill Hill Rocks
Crossroads of Pennine Way & Snake Path
Looking to Kinder Plateau from Snake Path
Snake Path & Ashop Clough
Ashop Clough
Ashop Clough
Following Flooded Path down Ashop Clough
Infant River Ashop with Fairbrook Naze
Looking back up Ashop Clough
Path back to Birchen Clough Car Park

Copyright 2006-7 Peak and Fell Walking. All rights reserved.
Design by: www.walkthelakes.co.uk