Saddleworth Discovery Walks: In search of a summer solstice sun

Chris Maylor, who runs a Saddleworth Discovery Walks blog and Facebook page, led a walk in search of a summer solstice sun.

For more information about local walks, email Chris at or visit his Facebook page or website.

IT IS hard to believe we are now already over half way through another year and the days are growing steadily shorter.

To mark the passing of the longest day, June’s Discovery Walk was planned to hopefully watch the setting of the Summer Solstice sun.

Setting out from the Castleshaw Outdoor Centre on a pleasant, mild Sunday evening, our little party strolled along the meandering course of Hull Brook to reach the peaceful waters of Hull Mill Lodge where families of ducks lazed in the warm evening air.

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Crossing the ford, we ascended an ancient hollow-way known as Hey Flake Lane, along which people have trod for centuries.

Reaching the high-point at Broad Lane, close to the entrance of Spring Hill, which was once a boarding school, we headed north along Moor Lane before crossing Castleshaw Moor from where we followed the course of the Oldham Way south across Millstone Edge.

As the sun started to dip slowly towards the western skyline, the moody clouds began to soften as they turned a light shade of crimson.

Reaching the trig point we turned to face west, looking forward to seeing the setting sun. Unfortunately at the very moment of sunset, a heavy rain shower swept up the valley, reducing visibility to just a few yards.

Donning waterproofs, we continued on, descending to a lower elevation via the old hamlet of Bleak Hey Nook.

We returned to the Castleshaw Outdoor Centre just as the veil of darkness crept in.

While on this occasion we may not have seen the Summer Solstice sun setting over Saddleworth, we had enjoyed a wonderful stroll around the peaceful Castleshaw Valley.


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