Friday November 6th. 5 miles. Hodder and Ribble.
A chance conversation with JD reminded me that at this time of year the salmon are heading up river to spawn. Every year I promise myself to witness this wonder of nature and each year I forget and miss the spectacle. So today I set off to try and see what is happening on the River Hodder. We are going to be walking locally for the foreseeable future and I’m going to try and find somewhere or something new for each walk I do. Today was salmon.
I walked along the road to Hodder Place, originally a preparatory school for Stonyhurst but now accommodation flats in a great situation.
I dropped to the bathing places used by the college in the distant past. This is a delightful stretch of the Hodder with several natural rocky weirs and pools. I sat at one for half an hour without seeing a fish. I was becoming hypnotised watching the water flowing over the rocks.
Moving on I walked downstream to the water measuring weir, but again no luck.
I continued down to Lower Hodder bridge next to Cromwell’s Bridge, yet another picture.
There is no way along the river here so you are forced up the road but looking back is a wonderful vista of the river and bridges.
Then it is into soggy fields to walk through Winkley Hall grounds to meet up with the next stretch of river just before it joins the Ribble. There is an ancient tree, The Winkley Oak, along here which I always stop and stare at, yet another picture.
I knew of a fisherman’s hut and bench where I rested for a while now looking over the Hodder joining the Ribble.
There was a steady stream of people walking ‘The Tolkien Trail’ and coming towards me a lone jogger who turned out to be an old friend, Nige, I hadn’t seen for a while. We had a good half hour’s chat. He is a fit guy but told me of him catching the Covid-19 virus a few weeks ago and thinking he was going to die. A cautionary tale for those doubters.
Next the River Calder slides in to join the Ribble opposite Hacking Hall. I came down the piece of land dividing the two in February when the rivers were in flood. It was here that the Hacking ferry originally operated and the ferryman’s house, now enlarged, is close by.
Onwards and there was a new metal seat, dedicated to a young lady, opposite Jumble’s weir, so I sat awhile but again there were no signs of any salmon.
I left the river as it trundled down to Dinkley and found a new, to me, lane back towards my car. Hidden industrial units with multiple post boxes and more of those glamping pods which are cropping up all over the countryside with little or no obvious planning regulations. Did I mention Tolkien? Don’t get me grumpy.
Pendle Hill looks good from any angle.
I’m going to have a word with a fisherman friend of mine to ask about the best place/time to see the salmon leaping. But today certainly hasn’t been wasted.
Been watching for them on the Eden, but seen no salmon yet.
I will try again but limited to the Ribble and Hodder, staying local and avoiding long drives. Your post about car insurance is interesting!
There should be a better way of writing the rules than this. I see so many interpretations.
I have always thought that a fixed maximum distance, the Scots had it, would be reasonable and would stop all those unhealthy scenes on beaches – not that it applies in Nov.
Yes, I think so too.
A good try. But like the time am spending making my model Land Rover the end result is of no consequence, it’s the doing that counts. I suppose there are arguments on both sides for having an objective or not for a walk but I am all in favour. I think because you were focusing on that aspect the water photos have gained that extra bit of magic.
Maybe you could have better success on the Lune. There is a fish ladder at Halton.
I remember that tree from a few years back. Very striking shape. It looks almost like it might sprout feet and walk away. I only realised after I’d done the walk it was mostly along the so called T#@%£n trail. Gorgeous stretches of river. Sorry you didn’t see a salmon.
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