Tuesday, 17 January 2012
On Saturday night my daughter and I were thinking where to go the next day and had a couple of ideas, when my husband said "You ought to go to Stalybridge. It's really nice around there with hilly scenery and a canal."
He'd been there that day with a couple of friends on a kind of railway, real ale pub crawl round the Leeds/Huddersfield area.
So Sunday morning we set off for Stalybridge. It was minus two, frosty and very cloudy, I think the first day of the Winter when we'd had a minus temperature in the daytime.
We had to change trains a couple of times and the second train (which we were on for over an hour) had no heating and was so cold you could see your breath. It was getting foggier as we went along and I was beginning to think we weren't going to see much of the scenery, when just before we reached our destination the fog cleared and the sun came out! The change was incredible.
There was indeed hilly scenery, but as you can see from this photo from the station platform, it's quite far away
This was taken when we were leaving so the sun isn't as strong.
When we came out of the front of the station it didn't look very promising as being picturesque, and we couldn't see any hills from that side, so we decided to find the canal and walk from there. On the way we came across these two
The seated man is Jack Judge who wrote the song 'It's a long way to Tipperary', and he's with a WWW1 soldier.
You know how canals in towns usually run along the back, with maybe factories alongside? Well here it went straight through the middle of town and it was really nice with lovely bright balustrading and even a lock (I love locks). The best stretch of canal I've seen. Unfortunately I somehow failed to take any photos to show you.
Probably because I was too busy taking this little fella's picture.
There were all the usual types of ducks and then just one like this who was a lot smaller. I think it's a Mandarin duck; isn't he cute?
After walking along the tow path for quite a while we eventually found a way to the hills
As we got higher up we came across two reservoirs.. There were four altogether, stepped up on different levels, but we didn't go up to the top two
We thought this looked like a monkey's face
After a not very hopeful start, it turned out to be a really good day after all, especially as on the way back it got foggy again and at home it had been cloudy and frosty all day, so we must have been in the only little area of sunshine.
When I was telling my husband about it later, it turns out that he only got as far as the station platform at Stalybridge as there's a real ale pub on it. I asked him how he knew there was a canal there. He said he didn't, the canal he was talking about was at another station! In future I'll take any recommendations from him with a pinch of salt.