Yesterday, I had a job to do. The job was painting the base of our new trailer. The good news was that I needed to leave it for 4 hours between the primer and the top coat. “What’s this got to do with Mountain Biking?” I hear you ask.
Well, those 4 hours gave me enough time to (1) Avoid a rain shower and (2) Explore the hills on my bike.
I’ve got into a habit of riding up past Hollingworth Lake, under the M62 and over Tunshill then back home. I love that ride but I fancied trying something new whilst I had the time and a lovely dry afternoon on a Bank Holiday (hurrah for leftover pagan holidays!). Despite the stupid climb from the motorway bridge past Tunshill Golf Club up the top of Tunshill, that’s the way I chose to climb. On foot.
On reaching Four Lane Ends, the easy option would be to head back towards t’Lake, so I decided not to do that. The path towards Ogden and Piethorne reservoirs ambles gently downhill from the junction, so for the first time, I headed that way. Good decision!
The full route I took is on Gpsies here, it’s worth a look. A nice uppy-downy afternoon out 🙂
You can see from the old map extract that the farm buildings had fascinated me. Some digging (on the internets, not in the ground) after I got home revealed that Rag Hole Farm had been a busy Rye and Barley farm in the 1850’s, before the reservoirs through the Piethorne valley were commissioned in 1878.
Presumably the farmer walked away from the property with a nice big cheque and lived happily ever after, leaving the rye and barley fields to be lost beneath the reservoirs and the farm buildings to be reclaimed by the land.
Isn’t it amazing how things change, and how the simple act of an afternoon’s bike ride can uncover new knowledge?
Learn a little more about Rag Hole Farm and the area here:
– United Utilities information about Piethorne Valley
– Rag Hole Farm photo on Geograph
I love my Mountain Bike!