Greater Manchester Boundary Walk: Healey Dell to Littleborough

MODERATE 1 reviews

Greater Manchester Boundary Walk: Healey Dell to Littleborough is a 14.6 kilometer point-to-point trail located near Rochdale, Greater Manchester, England that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, and bird watching.

Distance: 14.6 km Elevation Gain: 623 m Route Type: Point to Point



bird watching



wild flowers


The final few miles in the hills of the northern boundary before the hard right turn southwards just above Littleborough to start the patrol of the eastern leg. The turn to the right to start the traverse of the northern edge of the county had come several miles back at Ashurst's Beacon. Since then it has been a walk across the grain of the landscape. Down into river valleys  up onto moors and hills da capo. The hills and moors provide a real boundary. Manchester in its basin below to the South. Rossendale and the decaying towns of East Lancashire to the North. Even so the actual line of the boundary often seems arbitrary. Sometimes following the crest of a ridge, others wandering aimlessly over grassy bog land. Always a good view South to the city. Never a clear view North over the plateaued moors lacking definitive peaks. Brown Wardle Hill above Whitworth, what a double-barrelled, public school educated hill it sounds. It seems to be the centre of a border fixated cult. Its slopes are dotted with stone boundary markers. A northern hemisphere version of the moai stone heads of Pacific Easter Island. Some standing, other lying toppled in the grass. An unexplained proliferation of the stone mason's art with a neatly carved 'S' on one side and 'H' on the other. All that labour of shaping and cutting the stones, heaving them laboriously up hill, planting them firmly into the ground. Why? To do nothing more than make a mark, a statement.   Noticed by no-one but a few sheep, cows and birds and the occasional dislocated stroller. Further on the small mounds that poke their heads above the moors break out into a poetry of names.  Crook Hill, Cuckoo Hill, Turn Slack Hill, Old Charles Hill, Clay Pot Hill, Owler Clough Hill, Ringing Pots Hill, Yellow Hill, Snoddle Hill. Who names them? The Greater Manchester Boundary Walk is a through trail. Check out all the other downloadable trails here:

3 months ago

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