Saturday, 26 December 2009

John Leigh Park and Dunham Park

Merry christmas and a happy new year to everyone!

THE SITUATION : I had the whole of last week of work. It snowed on Thursday 17th and the snow stuck, it has snowed several times since including a few heavy falls and a very heavy fall on Tuesday 22nd. The snow has been on the ground over a week now here and has accumulated since the 17th, only today has it started thawing! Oh and there is something called Christmas happening too this week.

THE PLAN : Stay well and fit. Drive to the Lake Disrtict, Peak District and North Wales on a few of my days off to go and climb some mountains in the snow and blue skies. Do house work in between when I can. Ignore christmas, don't spend to much money or time on it!


Thursday 17th I got extremely excited as the first snows fell while I was at work.

Friday 18th I was at work for my last day before having over a week off and work colleagues put on a buffet organised by staff as we were not having a proper one through work. I drowned my body with Red Wine, ended up doing some bad dancing.

Myself shamelessly pished

Saturday 19th spent most of the lovely blue sky and wintry day in bed hung over instead of in the Lakes.

Sunday 20th saturday night it snowed again and then froze over, we packed for a proper walk but got up not that early and looked at webcams and traffic info to see the Lakes and Peak cloud covered and roads blocked. The world outside our back door was blue skies and snow so decided on a local walk instead via the roof of our local multi storey car park for the views! The park was fantastic as here in Trafford our local park John Leigh Park provides the only hill for miles so every child with a sledge was there. We sat their watching as we ate home made Lochinver Pies which Nicky had postal ordered to our door as a chrismtas present. It started thundering as well as snowing heavilly so we went home and got the fire going.

Winter wonderland at John Leigh Park in Altrincham

Monday 21st I've got a horrid tooth in my mouth which since I had emergency root canal treatment on it eight years ago has been dying. The tooth has been filled several times and cracked in half so it was time to have it out. Only problen is that it was in such a state that I had to be sedated. This meant Nicky having the afternoon off and me being taken to the dentist and knocked out for nearly two hours. So the whole day again sunny and blue skies with snow was spent doing none hill activites.

Tuesday 22nd decided to stop being daft and get out to the hills. Packed a full winters day walking kit including Ice Axe and Crampons and headed towards the Peak District. As I set off it started snowing heavilly. I got to Glossop and the police had closed the Snake Pass so were not letting people into Glossop instead diverting them through hilly Hayfield which made no sense at all. A few dodgy moments in the car and watching others simply abandon their cars and walk made me realise I was best to turn round and go home. I headed back down the M67 which by this time after three hour blizzards was treacherous.

Scary road conditions on the M67 near Hyde

I headed back to Altrincham and decided to go for an easy but always enjoyable walk around Dunham Park our local National Trust house and deer park. It is a fantastic place and only a ten minute walk or drive from our back door. It continued to snow on and off but nothing like the blizzards of the morning. I saw dozens of young Fallow Deer in the park, the odd friendly one too. I sat and ate my lunch in the shelter of the Deer House where a Buck stood and watched me the whole time I was there. He was probably wondering if my Southern Fried Chicken Wrap was as tasty as the trees and ferns he had been munching on all morning.

Beautiful Fallow Deer at Dunham Park

While I was sat watching a Jay foraging in the snowy leaves for a grubby lunch I phoned my friend who organises our football on a Tuesday night and asked if the game was on or not, he told me there was a pitch inspection at 4pm. When I got home he phoned me and let me know that the place we play at said they have cleared the pitches and we could play as normal. It took me two hours of a frightening journey on sheet ice to get to the football. In Altrincham there had been a few accidents and the main roads were covered in ice so cars were sliding all over the place. We got to the pitches to find of the twenty plus pitches they had only cleared the snow off ours and sensibly told every other pitch booking not to bother risking their lives getting there! The snow on the pitch had been swept to the sides and also into the goal!! What kind of moron clears a pitch and puts the snow in the goals!!! They should never have told us to go down in the first place and gave us some sob story about loosing money, I won't even go into the finances of what they make in a normal night! We played a full hour as we'd all made the effort to get there...

Ridiculous playing conditions at The Pitz

Wednesday 23rd was spent mostly out on icy roads shopping for christmas presents. I started getting a cold during the day and had to nip out to get pain killers as my mouth and gums were also hurting from my tooth extraction.

Thursday 24th took my grannie across to my aunties where she was spending the next few days for christmas. The roads were still covered in snow and ice so we had to stick to the main roads. I got a text during the morning from my sister asking i I wanted to go round to theirs and help my brother in law and nine month old nephew build a snowman! Hmm now let me think... YUP!!!! It took us just over two hours to build our five foot tall snowman, depsite having by now a really bad cold and aching mouth...

Christmas Day snowman in my sisters garden

Friday 25th had a fantastic christmas day at my sisters with the family, amazing meal, we didn't leave until 1:30am last night. It was my little nephews first christmas and great for it to be a white one! We had a game of Trivial Pursuit which was taken very seriously, it went on for three hours and forty five minutes and Nicky and I won! The only bad thing was having a cold, sore mouth and had ache for most of the day but pain killers sorted that out, not being able to taste the delicous meal was not great though :-(

Saturday 26th stuck in bed with bad cold and sore mouth :-(

I have uploaded the photos from the John Leigh Park walk here.

I have uploaded the photos from the Dunham Park walk here.

Route Map...


  1. Very good Jamie. Hope you are feeling better, and not too miffed about your spectacular failure to make use of your axe and crampons last Tuesday!

  2. It was a delicious meal you're right!!

    Adam enjoyed his snowman too, thanks Uncle Jamie :-)