My first walk with GOC Transpennine Group - the Whaley Bridge Circular - was spectacular, thank you. Of course, the weather helped. Blue skies and fluffy white clouds, not much grey or wind. I elected to travel by train, as living only a short distance from one of the stations on the Buxton line. As I tumbled into the carriage and noted small ruck-sacks and a large Alsatian, three pairs of eyes met mine. GOC, I said to myself. We soon fell into chatting and any misgivings I might have had about cliques were soon dis-spelled. Folk gathered near Whaley Bridge station and there was more time to chat and introduce one's self. We then strode off 'manfully', looking as though we had a purpose.
The walk was described as moderate (which it was) and variety of scenery was the order of the day, with water, woodland and moorland the key ingredients. We were soon enjoying views of Todbrook Reservoir, complete with sailing dinghies darting across the water. The only real ascent of the day was the climb to Windgather Rocks for some breathtaking views. Picnic lunches never tasted better while all fifteen of us enjoyed the fine views from a glassy slope looking towards open moorland and Long Hill. The descent to picturesque Fernilee reservoir offered more views of picture postcard blue water through the trees, before we continued on the riverside path through woodland leading us back into Whaley Bridge for a well-deserved drink outside at 'The Cock'. Where else? The nine-mile walk took just under five hours including lunch. Many thanks to Richard Sandover for planning a very well thought out day, and for arranging the weather!