It was suggested that this Wednesday's Warts' night outing should be cancelled until the weather became wet, windy and cold. However, we soldiered on from Rowlee Bridge in the almost clear, rain free evening, with the feeling that the weather was inappropriate. Maybe because the moon was in its gibbous phase, the weather had also gone into a different phase. In case you don't know what the gibbous phase is, well, it occurs just before the full moon. We were all grateful to Clive for providing us with this information at the start of the run.
With current political climate as it was, there was some sensitivity about, to the extent that when I tripped at the back of the car, I fell on to Eoin, knocking him into the boot. Clearly, it was necessary to apologise for this inappropriate behaviour and, fortunately, Eoin accepted my apologies so I was not brought before the DPFR behaviour committee. Phew! The run could continue, therefore, in peace and harmony.
The Cap'n had planned a route via Crookestone Knoll, Coffin Rock, the youth hostel, Kinder southern edge and Madwoman's Stones, most of which had a high content of Harmerian vegetation (HV). In retrospect, the climb to the Knoll was relatively mild with some form of path most of the way up, perhaps this may be considered to be inappropriate HV? However, the descent from Coffin Rock to the youth hostel provided almost the complete set of Dark Peak underfoot conditions. These included knee-high heather, which sometimes disguised chunky rocks, thigh high rushes with the associated swamp, a good dose of tussocky ground, dead and painfully brittle bracken, some serious mud near the stream and a steep climb through some mature bilberry and more bracken. Through this turmoil of conditions, Eoin was heard to make some remark which could be considered to be inappropriate but, to balance things out I forgave him and, thus relieved, he sprinted off like a sprung chicken.
At the youth hostel, a late starter, Willy, had caught us up so making the numbers up to 12. Having remarked that the underfoot conditions might put people off coming out, Bob replied that, evidently, they already clearly had been put off this official Warts outing by the limited number brave enough to make the trip here. The climb from the youth hostel was only blessed with some bracken and bilberry before reaching the edge using a thin and, latterly, rocky path. This climb prompted a detailed analysis of the route of Bob's night race from the Snake Inn (29th November). We were fortified at the edge by whisky, jelly babies, Liquorice Allsorts and some of Penny's Trick or Treat concoctions. We needed all this for the short (?) crossing of Kinder to Madwoman's Stones. Surprisingly for this section of the flattish Kinder plateau, there feels to be significant descents and ascents of the groughs adding up to something which isn't really flat. So, we went up and down grough after grough ploughing through some soft going until 11 of us arrived at some rocks with one lonesome torch at some other rocks. Were we at Madwoman's Stones or not? There was a strong sense of deja vue having done something similar three weeks ago. Nevertheless, with the idea of being a team, we went to join Tim's solitary torch but then having been sociable, we suddenly became anti-social as everybody dashed off to Rowlee Bridge. Even then, some inappropriate behaviour occurred when at least three of us went straight down the quad track to join the tarmac road to the bridge rather than diagonally across country. Dare it be said, I was almost happy on the road! However, overall, it was declared to be a good outing afterwards in the Ladybower where discussions on the most valuable piece of land was claimed to be on Kinder where a patch of un-grassed peat was used as a control for water table measurements. What about relays on this patch for old times' sake? Discussions later drifted into geology (there's a White Peak outing next week) and lectures were given in the car by Tom and Clive on sand dunes and red rocks. Aaaaaah!