Saturday, 1 July 2000

Mountain Profile: Bleaklow

Bleaklow seen from Kinder Scout
Height: 633m (2,077ft)
Prominence: 128m (420ft)
Region: Peak District Dark Peak
Classifications: HuMP, Hewitt, Nuttall
Summit feature: Cairn
Times climbed: 1
Related trip report:
Higher Shelf Stones & Bleaklow - 04/10/2015
The cairn closest to the true summit
The large cairn and stake at Bleaklow Head
Bleaklow is a high gritstone moorland, just north of Kinder Scout, in the Derbyshire High Peak. Much of it is nearly 2,000 feet (610 m) above sea level and the shallow bowl of Swains Greave on its eastern side is the source of the River Derwent.

Bleaklow Head, marked by a huge cairn of stones, is the high point at the western side of the moor and is crossed by the Pennine Way. It is one of three summits on this plateau above 2,000ft, the others being Bleaklow Stones, some 1.9 miles (3 km) to the east along an indefinite ridge, and Higher Shelf Stones, 0.9 miles (1.5 km) south of Bleaklow Head.

At 633 metres (2,077ft), Bleaklow is the second highest point in Derbyshire and the area includes the most easterly point in the British Isles over 2,000 feet, near Bleaklow Stones.

On 3 November 1948, USAF Boeing RB-29A Superfortress 44-61999, of the 16th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, 91st Reconnaissance Group, 311th Air Division, Strategic Air Command; crashed at Higher Shelf Stones, Bleaklow, whilst en route from Scampton to Burtonwood. All 13 crew members were killed. A large amount of wreckage is still visible, as a memorial to the crash.

The summit affords views across Manchester, Lancashire and Cheshire to the west and towards Holme Moss, Emley Moor and Yorkshire to the east.

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