The day after we returned from a short break away from home, we both felt tired but thought we ought to make an effort to stretch our legs. It appeared to be a nice, bright day, but outside, a cold wind blew. We confined ourselves to the valley bottom, and started out along the canal towards Mytholmroyd.
I noticed several details highlighted by the early April sun; out-of-season holly berries; fascinating junk in the stone yard at Mayroyd; strange items adorning lived-in and abandoned barges. Meanwhile, the stiff breeze created ripples on the usually still canal waters.
Just before Fallingroyd Bridge, we saw someone head down a path towards the river. Spotting a gap in the fence, we followed them. At first, the trail seemed picturesque. The ‘desire path’ was edged by marsh marigolds, pudding docks and other spring vegetation.
However, we soon came across fallen tree trunks blocking the narrowing path, now perilously close to the water’s edge. Continuing seemed impossible. We could not work out where the people we saw had gone. Looking for an alternative route, we found that going upwards took us to a dangerous-looking boggy industrial wasteland whilst. We retraced our steps back to the towpath. At the old Walkey’s clogs building (Now even more decrepit) we crossed the bridge over the river and searched in vain for more clues as to where the path led.
On the other side of the river, we took the path leading upwards over the railway bridge. Then we noticed a path following the line of the river and railway and decided to explore. Attempts at proper drainage meant we could easily navigate passed waterfalls and trees forming the edge of Crow Nest Woods.
Nearer town, neglected buildings and ramshackle sheds became hidden from view behind a new wooden fence. As we approached the end of the path, the railway station platform came into view on the same level. We crossed back over the river and onto the canal towards home.