Saturday, April 2, 2016

Pikehall, Ballidon, Parwich, and Newhaven

Another walk with Chris from Leeds; he only walks with me during the summer months. As usual I travelled to Fox House where I met up with him; he arrived just as the bus was pulling in to the bus stop...good timing that.

We drove down to the free car park on the High Peak Trail at Pikehall. This section of disused railway line is also a short stretch of the Midhires Way, and the Pennine Bridleway. We walked in a southeasterly direction for about a mile before taking a footpath which led to a tunnel going under one of the railway embankments.

It was still raining when I took the first two photographs; it cleared up later though and by mid-afternoon was a glorious day.

The top photograph is an old crane that was used on the railway, the other one shows a building known as 'The Chapel.' It's not a chapel though, even though it looks like a Methodist Chapel; it's actually an old pumphouse where a steam engine was used to power the drills in a nearby quarry.

We walked down a quiet picturesque dale and then a quarry road to reach the small village of Ballidon. The next section was across the fields to Parwich, it was very muddy in places; Chris doesn't like the mud and is very careful where he puts his feet so not to get mud on his trousers. He was more successful in this endeavour than I was [I wasn't trying that hard though - I knew I wouldn't get the car seat dirty because I'd put on my overtrousers when we got back to the car]...but he was still splashing himself with mud and dirty water. 

A change of route was needed, a change that ended up adding three miles to the walk. 

It had stopped raining by the time we reached Parwich. We ate our sandwiches sitting on a bench in the churchyard; the area of the village near the church is pretty, but the rest isn't particularly attractive.

We left the village and walked along the Limestone Way to join the Tissington Trail just north of Tissington itself. This involved crossing a pretty valley, finishing with a strenuous climb up to the disused railway.

By now it was getting quite bright and I was able to take some good panoramic shots of the countryside as we walked in a northerly direction for the next four miles.

Just east of Biggin we left the trail and walked along a short path to reach Newhaven; there's a nice building here that looks like a hall, but that's it's just a busy crossroads , a pub, and a few houses. We walked along a narrow country road for about half a mile and then reached the High Peak Trail, which we followed back to the car park. At one point I commented that the countryside over to the left looked like the steppe country of Eastern Europe, Chris said he thought it resembled the Prairies in North America...I think they are probably very similar landscapes.

We got back to the car just after five o'clock; several hours earlier I said the plan was to finish the walk at this I'm happy with my pacing.

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