Walking in Cheshire4th June 2007
With the long evenings upon us, the possibility of having a short evening stroll after work becomes a reality and Cheshire does supply the goods. The range of opportunities includes the hill country next to Macclesfield, public footpaths through rolling pastoral land, canal bank tracks and local long distance trails. Friday evening saw me head into the hill country but there’ll be more on that later. Other evenings have been wiled away by the Macclesfield Canal, either by heading north to nearby Bollington or south towards Bosley and Gawsworth. Pastoral strolls have taken me between Nether Alderley to Macclesfield or, on one winter’s afternoon, from my own doorstep to Wilmslow, which proved to be a shorter journey than I expected.
Speaking of my own doorstep, a good number of my local walks have started and/or ended right there and so it was last Friday. It was a spot of road walking that got me to Tegg’s Nose Country Park, not a large place but the views make up for that. From the top of “Teggie”, which was subject to quarrying in times past, I dropped down to Langley before I encountered what I consider a peach of a path; the views over the villages Langley and Sutton towards the radio mast surmounting Croker Hill will draw me back. One afternoon, another stroll began from Teggie and that took me through Macclesfield Forest to the small settlement of Forest Chapel, over the summit of Shutlingsloe and then home via Langley. It was a six hour venture and all I had to do was walk straight out the front door of my town centre abode.
Extending the “from my own doorstep” theme, January strolls have seen me head to Lyme Park near Disley by way of the Middlewood Way, which largely follows the alignment of the old Marple-Macclesfield railway line, and the Gritstone Trail, which extends from Kidsgrove in Staffordshire to Lyme Park. That takes me onto the longer distance paths around here. I have been know to travel over sections of the North Cheshire Way, the Bollin Valley Way (which extends from Macclesfield to Partington) and the Dane Valley Way. The latter goes from Buxton in Derbyshire to Middlewich in Cheshire and I followed part of its length while on a particularly muddy walk from the Cat and Fiddle Inn to Rushton Spencer in November 2004; the conditions underfoot were hardly a surprise given how wet 2004 was.
There’s plenty of walking to be had around here all right; all that is needed is a spot of map perusal and some time to explore the possibilities. The Discover Cheshire website has a walking section where you can find out about these and other options.