Winter Hill, Two Lads & Rivington Pike Sunset

22nd February 2021

With a couple of days off from work I took advantage of todays bright forecast and headed to Winter Hill for a local walk. My original plan was to head up just to capture the sunset but the day was so nice I left earlier and decided to include Winter Hill and Two Lads.

Brad and Holly were last here with Paula and me a few weeks ago when I recorded a -10°C Windchill, today when I left the car it was 16°C ! What a difference a couple of weeks can make when it's fair to say, Spring has almost sprung.


Ascent: 1,041 Feet - 318 Metres
Summits: 880 Feet - 268 Metres
Weather: Dry, Warm & Bright. Highs of 16°C Lows of 8°C
Parking: Georges Lane, Horwich
Area: West Pennine Moors
Miles: 6.6
Walking With: Brad & Holly Dog
Ordnance Survey: Explorer 287
Time Taken: 2 Hours 30 Minutes
Route: Georges Lane - Rotary Way - Winter Hill - Rotary Way - Two Lads - Crooked Edge Hill - Pike Cottage - Rivington Pike - Pike Cottage - Wilderswood - Georges Lane

Parking Details and Map
Nearest Post Code: BL6 6RS
Grid Reference: SD 658 117


Map and Photo Gallery


Rivington Pike from Rotary Way 15:00pm 16°C
Wearing a thick hoodie and jacket I knew from the moment I locked the car I was going to be too hot so the jacket gets tied around my waist for the duration of the walk. That's Rivington Pike where I plan to watch the sunset from in about two hours time but first I'm heading for Winter Hill accompanied today by Brad and Holly who are panting like 'good uns' already.

Two Lads and Winter Hill.
The plan is to walk over to Winter Hill then return to Rivington Pike via Two Lads and Crooked Edge Hill...the moorland is looked vibrant today what a difference a big blue sky can make.

...all roads lead to Winter Hill.
With hardly any mountain bikers about I let Brad & Holly roam free which Brad quickly takes advantage sniffing here, there and everywhere while Holly does what she always does and walks just a few feet away from Dad.

Winter Hill transmitter mast.
There is a path that cuts through the moorland over there on the right somewhere but it's always been too boggy to use and despite the freaky warm temperatures this afternoon it still looked too boggy, maybe I'll wait until it's dried out a little.

Winter Hill transmitter mast from Rotary Way.
Walking around Winter Hill has kept me sane these last few months coming here recorded and unrecorded almost every weekend. I'm gonna miss this place when things return to normal but I plan to keep returning whenever I can.

The George Henderson Memorial Plaque (Scotsman's Stump)
Native of Annan Dumfrieshire
Who Was Barbarously Murdered
On Rivington Moor
At Noonday November 9th
In the 20th Year of His

Looking towards Winter Hill summit.
Located between the second and third mast from the right.

Setting sun.
I hadn't been really paying enough attention to the time until I saw how low the sun was which prompted me to look at my watch, it's now 16:20pm which leaves me a good hour to reach Rivington Pike. Blimey, I think I best stop dawdling now!

Heading towards Winter Hill summit.
Instead of taking the direct route by following the road I turn right after the first transmitter, pass through a sty and follow a narrow track towards the summit, the reason for this? dunno I've never done it before!

Looking back over Counting Hill towards Springs Reservoir.
What a cracking view, note to self. Use alternative route towards the summit more often!

Views over Belmont Reservoir towards Turton and Longworth Moors.

In't opposite direction.
Spitlers Edge and Redmond's Edge.

Winter Hill summit.
Brad was exploring the hillside and at one moment he'd gone so far I lost sight of him, flipping eck lad, but he came back when he heard my panicked voice calling him hopping over the hummocky grass without a care in the world, meanwhile Holly was never a few feet away as always.

Returning past the Transmitter Station.
I hooked the gruesome twosome back on their leads realising I was cutting it fine if I wanted to walk the two miles to Rivington Pike in less than one hour, come on kids time to stop sniffing every blade of grass that we pass.

Approaching Two Lads.
I opted to gain Two Lads by a marginal longer route owing to the shorter one looking rather squelchy, what time I would use 'going around' the boggy areas we would make up using the longer path. Both Brad and Holly are back off their leads now.

Looking back on Winter Hill from the ascent of Two Lads.
The truck was loading two diesel generators as I passed the transmitter station.

Two Lads.
With Two Lads summit easily gained it was time to head over Crooked Edge Hill now...the light right now is blooming fantastic.

Brad leading the way over Crooked Edge Hill.
We're heading towards the Pike Cottage located near the trees over on the left.

Two Lads.
Don't you just love the light at this time of day.

Pike Cottage (left) and Rivington Pike (right)
Flipping eck we best get our skates on if we're to make Rivington Pike by sunset.

Cracking lightshow.

Rivington Pike from Pike Cottage.
We descended Crooked Edge Hill and joined the track at Pike Cottage where the Pike Snack Shack cafe was supplying hot drinks to folk sat on the socially distanced tables outside who were in for a lovely sunset.

Rivington Pike sunset.
We charged up Rivington Pike arriving with a good ten minutes to spare half of which was spent getting my breath back while wandering about the summit just taking it all in.



Lower Rivington Reservoir from Rivington Pike.
With the fading light came a slight drop in temperature but the view was worth standing in the cold for a few minutes longer.


The end of another day for Horwich and Adlington.

We left the remaining visitors at the Pike summit and while a feeling of content washed over me we three descended Rivington Pike and joined the track back to Wilderswood and Georges Lanes thereafter. Both Brad and Holly's pace had slowed a little, both have matching grubby paws and bellies, both ready for a drink of water and treats when we get back to the car which looked abandoned on its own on Georges Lane.

By the time we got back there was only minutes of light left which was when I took this last photo at the end of what can only be described as the perfect way to end our local walk, but it doesn't end there, it's homemade lasagne for tea.


Back to top