Here’s a surprisingly varied little route from today (I made up as I went), with numerous options for expansion – should you fancy – right outside Hillsborough. It wouldn’t take anybody more than an hour. I didn’t feel like going too far, so at only 5 miles this is just enough to have kept things ticking over. I had real fun doing this, possibly because it was finally warm again, sunny and everything – but mainly because I got to see another area I’d never been to before, and realised there was lots more to do if I go that way again. See for yourself.
Here’s the route:
1) Bottom of Loxley Rd. Take the first left up the hill, it’s a little gravel track that leads to the edge of the River Loxley – follow it up past the retirement home, duck pond and wooded area.
2) Turning left onto a rough road that leads to some houses, then turn left and you’ll reach the end of the road.
3) This is where you take the narrow path back toward the River’s edge, and before long you’ll see a footbridge – take it. Once across the bridge, steer right, and head straight up the hill via a rough trod.
4) A right turn onto a horizontal path takes you over a stile. This section was very muddy today, and best taken head on, as to try and avoid mud means slipping on steep banks and isn’t worth the risk in my view – get dirty!
5) When you reach the end of the muddy path, go left/uphill and beware the brambles (guess who’d gone with shorts for a change?).
6) Once you reach Spout Lane at the top of the path, turn left and climb the steep hill until you see the steps on the right hand side.
7) These bring you out on Stannington Rd, and another set of steps invite you further up the hillside.
8) There’s a little loop here that goes through a gate at the top of the steps, along the top of the hillside linking Riggs High Rd with Riggs Low Rd, and then you double back to Stannington Rd (this is certainly one area that begs for a bit of exploration, since at this point the route turns to road). Head along and down Stannington Rd, enjoying clear views across Sheffield – Don Valley in the distance.
9) Having ‘beat your feet’ downhill on tarmac for a good 5-10 minutes, turn right down Hollins Lane, which will bring you down to Rivelin Valley Rd. Before you cross the bridge, go left onto the trail and follow it until you find a set of stepping stones that cross the River Rivelin.
10) Cross carefully (today they were well beneath the surface, and a little slippy, but better than wading knee deep). Lastly, head back toward Malin Bridge and where you started.
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