Along the canal By Fairy Glen Crossing the canal bridge More frozen fields The first frozen field view from Ashurst Beacon
Beacon Bash. Sunday November 28th 2010

21 people. 20.3 miles. Leaders : Jean Lyon & Alf Short

One of the highlights of our calendar is walking round Wigan and this was one of the finest. It was just about the perfect winter’s day outing. Car thermometers on the way down to the start at Fairy Glen showed minus five but it warmed up as the day went on and we think it even got to minus four! A beautiful white hoar frost covered the ground adding to the spectacle with many, many scenes worthy to grace a Christmas card.

So the route – Fairy Glen on to Appley Bridge, Upholland and into the delightful Beacon Park for our first refreshments stop. Sadly a distant mist or haze deprived us of the usual spectacular views from Ashurst’s Beacon but to complain would be nit-picking. It all added to the eerie atmosphere.

Moving on we skirted Newburgh, picked up the Leeds/Liverpool canal at Parbold and had our second break of the day on Parbold Hill. You could only marvel at the extreme optimism of the ice cream man trying to sell his wares on a day like this! But the pace had to be maintained and Alf and Jean soon had us on the move again.

The long haul up Hunter’s Hill had the reward of a touching and poignant brief stop at John Viney’s memorial bench with the ever smiling Doreen with us to help savour the moment and the wonderful views. We still had the delight of Harrock Hill before the long loop back into Fairy glen for a 4.30pm finish just as darkness really descended.

So – “who wants to walk round Wigan?” “We do!”

Wednesday Dec 1st. 'Twixt Yarrow and Douglas. 12 miles from Croston. 10 walkers and 2 dogs.
Along the Dyke At Croston Bridge Don't rock the bridge! Five star dining facilities Frozen canal It's flat round here More frozen canal The Yarrow returning to Croston