Goats on the Roof, Fontburn
Sun 6th February 2011
Guided Walk Date - 5th February 2011
After several days of high winds and occasional periods of rain the soft shoe shuffle went into overdrive had Sundance done enough for Saturday to be a dry day? YES.
Although overcast and grey it was not raining and the strong winds had died down to a steady breeze. We arrived at the café at Goats on the Roof and availed ourselves to the facilities before setting off to walk back to the entrance gate to Fontburn Reservoir on the way crossing the Scots Gap to Rothbury railway line and the farm Roughlees which is set up as a rare breeds farm.
At the gate the footpath left the track and headed west along side a wood. After a short distance we once more crossed the line of the railway. The footpath then turned south through the wood before we once more continued to head west over rough pasture land. A steady gentle climb lead us past a number of sink holes (allowing Mike to witter on about how sink holes were formed) this eventually brought us to the top of Greenleighton Hill.
Here we looked down into Greenleighton Quarry (and once more Mike went in to raptures because he was able to talk about ‘rocks’ in this case that this quarry had given its name to a species of brachiopod Pleuropugnoides greenleightonensis and this was junction between the Lower and Upper Carboniferous period, the Visean – Namurian junction, lies in the vicinity of the Great Limestone.
From here it was a short walk to Greenleighton farm (Jon’s old stomping ground) leaving the farm we entered another woodland this sheltered us from the wind so Mike condescended to stop for lunch having been threatened with a rebellion if he didn’t. After lunch we left the woodland to walk North West through some rough pasture until we reached the Fallowlees burn. As this was the furthest west we were going we turned east heading back to the top end of the Fontburn reservoir roughly following the route of the burn.
Our route now followed the southern boundary fence of the reservoir this is a permissive path. The path eventually enters into the land adjacent to the reservoir and follows a well maintained path back to the overflow dam which is just in front of Goats on the Roof. Mike as usual made a long detour along to the Dam proper so we could see the over flow pipe (it looked like a big plug hole), then to look at the water treatment plant and in the background the old railway viaduct.
At long last we headed for the restaurant for a well deserved cup of coffee and some chocolate cake.