Saddleworth Discovery Walks: Walking the Chew Valley Edges

Chris Maylor, who runs a Saddleworth Discovery Walks blog and Facebook page, looks back at a walk across the Chew Valley Edges

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

AS PART of the Saddleworth Outdoor Festival, October’s Discovery Walk was planned to take in the rugged gritstone edges of the wonderfully picturesque Chew Valley.

Setting out from Dove Stone Sailing Club, our group headed along the old tram-way via which building materials were transported for the construction of Chew Reservoir, which was once the highest reservoir in the land.

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Reaching the dark waters of Chew Reservoir, which was shrouded in low cloud, we turned west across Chew Hurdles towards Wimberry Moss.

Finding a comfortable spot amongst the soft, heather, we settled down for lunch to watch the many athletes who would soon be dashing by in the Chew Valley Edges Fell Race, organised by Saddleworth Runners Club.

No sooner had flasks and sandwiches been dug out from the depths of rucksacks than the first fellrunners appeared from the mist.

Moving fast and light-footed, they danced like mountain goats along the gritstone edges, flitting from rock to rock before becoming cloaked in the silvery mist once again.

With the fellrunners out of view, we finished our lunch and continued on to Wimberry Rocks, known locally as Indian’s Head due to the collection of rocks resembling the head of an America Indian chief lying supine on the skyline.

Continuing on, we traversed Slack Head Brow, to reach the summit of Alphin Pike from where we descended to the bustling valley bottom at Dove Stone Reservoir.


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