Secret Kinder - 26th April 2008
Date 26th April 2008 Description Secret Kinder
Start Point Bowden Bridge Car Park Peaks Climbed Fairbrook Naze 619m
Total Time 5hrs 55min    
Walking Time 4hrs 00min    
Stopped Time 1hrs 55min    
Distance 9.50 miles    
Moving Average 2.4 mph Start Grid Ref SK 04872 86968
Elevation at Start 195 metres Temperature 18-20°C
Total Ascent 660 metres Weather Sun & Hazy Cloud
Max Elevation 620 metres Walking With 30 Walkers

Bowden Bridge Car Park - Farlands - Cluther Rocks (Dog Stone) - Red Brook (Post Box) - Kinder Downfall - Baby Face Stone - Kinder Gates - Fairbrook Naze & Bothy - Boxing Glove Stones - Turtle Rock - Ashop - Aircraft Crash Site - Sandy Heys - Kinder Reservoir - Booth Farm - Hill Houses - Bowden Packhorse Bridge - Bowden Bridge Car Park

As part of the Peak District National Park Walking Festival I decided to join the Peak National Rangers to explore part of Kinder Scout. It was a bright and fine day for the walk although hazy in the distance. I met up with the rest of the party to start the walk at 10.30am from Bowden Bridge Car Park near Hayfield. After a brief talk we set off down the Kinder Road. I was unsure what pace we would set today as there was a mix of ages and abilities in the group. As well as 4 Park Rangers there was one gentleman who was from Anglesey who was a Snowdonia National Park Ranger. Once we arrived at Farlands (before Kinder Reservoir) we turned off the road and headed across fields in search of Open Access Land. The path followed alongside a conifer wood before arriving at a stile giving access to the Open Access Land. The ground was still a bit wet from previous weeks’ rain but reasonably firm and easy going. Our first “secret” of the area was in the vicinity of Cluther Rocks (on the ascent to the edge of the Kinder Plateau) and was called the “Dog Stone”. We had the co-ordinates of the stone so we used our GPS to find the exact place. The stone has an inscription on the face of the stone as well as a carved Dog. This was the place where a dog’s ashes had been scattered.

After a short stop and admiring the lovely view back to Kinder Reservoir we carried on up to the Kinder Edge path. Shortly after gaining access to the path we came across our second “secret” of the day - one of the 4 Post Boxes around Kinder Scout at Red Brook. The post boxes are not the traditional red box that you may normal see but are in fact are small boxes or tins containing a book, a stamp and various other bits and bobs. The idea is that you write a message in the book and then if you had your own book you would stamp that and then move on to the next post box.

After looking at the “post box” we move on to arrive at Kinder Downfall. I could not believe it – once again the flow of the waterfall was going upwards – just the same as I saw it on a walk last year. It must be something to do with the wind and the location of the rocks. While at Kinder Downfall we also saw a cave which could easily house several people. It certainly would be very good for sheltering out of any adverse weather conditions. The walk then continued to Kinder Gates. As we left Kinder Downfall one of the walkers in our party had a problem with their boots. The sole of one of their boots almost fell off!! This was temporarily repaired by a cord out of one of the Rangers rucksacks. At this point we had lost a few walkers who went back with 2 of the Rangers. This meant we were left with 2 Rangers and the majority of our group to cross the Kinder plateau. Just before arriving at Kinder Gates there is a Stone on the right hand side called the Baby Face Stone. It can only be seen if you turn around the way that you have just come. We had our lunch break at Kinder Gates.

After being fed and watered we picked our way across the groughs and hags of the Kinder plateau towards Fairbrook Naze. It was not as boggy today (although there were some slippy areas at times) and in fact the peak was quite springy in places. While crossing we saw 2 hares. We soon arrived at the top of Fair Brook without any problems. There is a bothy in the rocks at this point. Across the valley (on Seal Edge) is the Chinese Wall. We continued to Fairbrook Naze where there were excellent views across Black Ashop Moor.
The next section of the walk took us across the northern edges of Kinder Scout. Places of interest along this path are the Boxing Glove Stones and the Turtle Rock.

Eventually we left the main path to ascend to an aircraft crash site near Ashop. The aircraft wreakage was from two RAF Sabre F.Mk 4s XD707 & XD730 from 66 Squadron which crashed on 22nd July 1954 while on exercise from Linton on Ouse. Flying Officer Jim Horne and Flight Lieutenant Alan Green descended through low cloud to check ground position. It is thought that they collided whilst climbing to fly above Kinder Scout. Both aircraft clipped the top of the hill above Kinder Reservoir and spilled on to the Ashop Moor side of the hill leaving debris on Kinder Scout and on Black Ashop Moor below. There were no survivors.

We all then continued along the Kinder Edge path (Pennine Way) to Sandy Heys. From here we could see another bothy and Charged Rock with its religious connections. Leaving Sandy Heys we descended steeply down to Kinder Reservoir. Listening carefully we could hear the call of the Curlew. Our return to the start was via Kinder Reservoir, Booth Farm, Hill Houses, and Bowden Bridge which is an old Packhorse Bridge. In the end it was a great days walking with good company. Well done to the National Park Rangers.

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Reference Books Used

Peak District National Park - Rangers Info
Maps Used
OL1 Explorer - The Peak District (Dark Peak Area)
Gathering at the Sheepwash on Kinder Road
About to cross stile onto Open Access Land
Crossing at small stream on way to Kinder
Kinder Scout in the distance
Rough & boggy ground on way to Kinder
Kinder Reservoir from near Cluther Rocks
Ascending bottom section of Cluther Rocks
View back to Kinder Reservoir
Short break on Cluther Rocks
View to Sandy Heys from Cluther Rocks
The Dog Stone - Cluther Rocks
Kinder Reservoir from Cluther Rocks
Kinder Reservoir from Cluther Rocks
Following path to Kinder Edges
Is everyone still in the group?
Ranger in an unusual stance
Kinder Reservoir from near Kinder Edges
Kinder Reservoir from near Kinder Edges
Last push to Kinder Edge - Kinder Reservoir behind
Kinder Edge pathnear Red Brook
Top of Red Brook
Post Box at Red Brook
Updating info at Post Box
Kinder Downfall - water being blown upwards
Close up of water being blown upwards
Rocks above Kinder Downfall
Cave at Kinder Downfall
Walking to Kinder Gates
Kinder Gates - Baby Face Stone
Baby Face Stone
Lunch at Kinder Gates
A muddy peaty crossing of Kinder plateau
Crossing Kinder plateau
Picking the best way through the groughs & hags of Kinder
Hare on Kinder plateau
Arriving at top of Fair Brook
Bothy at top of Fair Brook
Looking to Fairbrook Naze
View from top of Fair Brook
Looking to Snake Pass from Fair Brook
Fairbrook Naze - Black Ashop Moor below & Featherbed Moss beyond
Black Ashop Moor from northern Kinder edge
Rocks on northern edge of Kinder
Black Ashop Moor from northern edge
Northern Kinder edge
Black Ashop Moor
Rock formation on northern Kinder edge
Turtle Rock - Northern Kinder edge
Northern Kinder edge path
Boxing Glove Stones - Northern Kinder edge
Boxing Glove Stones - Northern Kinder edge
RAF Sabre F4 crash site - Ashop
RAF Sabre F4 crash site - Ashop
RAF Sabre F4 crash site - Ashop
Sandy Heys
Sheeps head - near Hollin Head
Looking towards William Clough
Kinder Reservoir
Kinder Reservoir
Bowden Packhorse Bridge
Next to Bowden Packhorse Bridge

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