Sunday, March 20, 2016

Miller's Dale, Priestcliffe, Taddington, Flagg, Monyash, Over Haddon, and Bakewell

Compared to last week when I was stranded on a train for two and a half hours just outside Sheffield Midland Station my public transport experience today was much better; the only problem being a delay of a few minutes as several dozen people boarded the bus at Chatsworth House, and then a shorter delay a few minutes later when we had to stop to let a small group of deer cross the road. Most people on the bus went 'aargh' or 'aw' and made appreciative comments; I enjoyed the moment, but kept quiet because I'm not a sentimental person...and I like venison too much.

The walk started at Miller's Dale with a fairly steep climb up to the fields which I then walked across to reach Priestcliffe. About halfway up the climb there's a seat with a lovely view where I sat and ate most of my sandwiches; it was nearly eleven o'clock by this time and so not too early.

I walked straight through the village, there's not a lot to see here so I continued across more fields and then the Taddington Bypass. I headed straight for the church steeple, where it looked like the footpath came out; it did, but a farmer had put up a fence that, of course, isn't on the map. I was annoyed that I had to turn back and walk on the other side of the fence.

I took a few photographs of Taddington Church, always wary of the undead who must pop up out of their graves and do untold mischief.

Why else would there be motion sensors in a churchyard?

I climbed up out of the village and then walked along the road leading towards Flagg; there were some lovely distant views over to the left.

Just beyond Flagg I wasn't concentrating on navigating and walked past the footpath I needed to take; this mistake cost me about a mile and a half - adding to the 42,000 steps I've taken today; by quite a bit my longest walk since I've been using the pedometer.

Once I was back on the right path it was a pleasant walk, mainly along country lanes, to Monyash, where I briefly popped into the The Old Smithy Cafe for a cold drink. The weather had been sunny and warm up until this point, but was quickly clouding over and became quite murky later on - that's why there are no more photographs...and because I was in a hurry to get back to Bakewell to catch the bus.

I didn't want to go down into Lathkill Dale; I thought it might be quite muddy. So I decided to take one of the high level routes across the fields, a route that I hadn't taken before. Looking at the map I thought it would be easy; yes, there seemed to be a lot of walls but they'd be easier than struggling with the mud and the slippery limestone rocks down in the valley. It probably was an easier option, but there were still a lot of high stiles that I had to climb over.

After all the stiles my thigh muscles were aching and so I took the road down to Bakewell. 

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