Sunday, July 30, 2017

Askern, Haywood, Trumfleet, Braithwaite, Kirk Bramwith, Kirkhouse Green, and Stainforth

Another late night in Leeds with friends and so I did a local walk today, I didn't need to be at the bus station until 09:30. I travelled to Askern Boating Lake - a short trip lasting only twenty minutes.

I initially walked in a southerly direction along the edge of a landscaped landfill area which looked quite natural. I then headed towards the east and crossed over the railway line, the Askern Branch, which isn't very busy, even more so on a Sunday. 

I don't know where the distance of 66 miles is measured from - it's certainly not London, which is a lot further away. 

I was walking through fields and meadows and as I approached Haywood I started to hear trains travelling on the busy East Coast Coast Main Line; a few minutes later I spotted one heading for London.

A few minutes later I crossed the line at another pedestrians-only crossing and continued on to Trumfleet.

I then turned north to reach the road that goes to Braithwaite; on the way I was approached by some Muslim horses wearing veils...I've never encountered anything like this before.

Braithwaite is an important point on the TransPennine Trail for walkers and cyclists.

I followed the road to Kirk Bramwith, crossing over the New Junction Canal at the swing bridge. The weather was perfect for taking photographs of the church.

I looped back northwards to the lift bridge at Braithwell to re-cross the canal and then walked along the towpath to the next lift bridge at Kirkhouse Green.

My next footpath started down the road to Fishlake, in places it was quite overgrown. By now it was getting very dark and it soon began to rain, maybe a couple of hours earlier than I was I made my way to the nearest bus stop, at Stainforth. I only had five minutes to wait for a bus.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Bakewell: And Then Taddington, Chelmorton, Sterndale Moor, and Hindlow Quarry

A bit of tight scheduling today; I needed to catch four buses in total, but everything on public transport went according to plan. I got off the first bus at Bakewell and had forty five minutes to wait for the next one and so this gave me the opportunity to take some early morning photographs when the town was very quiet with few people around. It was still quite murky and that's why many of the images are in black and white.

I arrived at Taddington and headed straight for the church to take some pictures but the light was awful and so I didn't bother; I managed to get a couple of photographs of the floral displays at one of the rather pretty bus shelters in the village though.

The footpath I took to leave the village was very narrow, right next to a [fortunately] well-trimmed leylandii hedge before I climbed up towards the small covered reservoir and trig point at Sough Top.

As I continued walking towards Chelmorton I met a fellow walker, a local man who used to work for the water board. We chatted for about fifteen minutes about the provision of drinking water in the Peak District - I was fascinated and could have talked about this all day...but we both needed to move on. He did however, tell me what the correct pronunciation of 'Chelmorton' is though; it's Chel-Morton.'

I soon reached Chelmorton and took some photographs of the church; I was here on my previous walk last week and didn't have the time. The light was still murky though and none of the images was any good.

At times I struggled to locate the path as I walked across the fields to Sterndale Moor, a small settlement consisting of fairly modern houses built for the quarrymen at Hindlow.

A train was just arriving at the quarry which helped me to locate the next section of footpath which runs right alongside the railway for about half a mile before crossing over a bridge. I was by now in pastureland but could see quarry workings and spoilheaps whichever direction I looked.

Just before reaching this blasting shelter I was phoned by a friend for the second time today and wasn't concentrating on my navigation and turned left instead of right, and so had to plan a new route which would take me to the bus stop at Blackwell Lane End...where I finished my walk last week. I had planned to walk to Buxton, but this mistake, this lapse of concentration, wasn't a disaster; it still ended up being an interesting walk with plenty of new areas to explore. 

The path I had taken soon gave me my closest view yet of Parkhouse Hill and Chrome Hill, two distinctive ridges which I want to walk along one day. Over in the other direction I could see right down into the active quarry with railway wagons, large tipper trucks, excavators, and crushed stone travelling along conveyor belts to be dumped in large heaps.

I had been walking along the southern edge of Hindlow Quarry for quite a while until I reached the end of the active workings. From this point my route back to the bus stop was due north mainly along farm tracks and country lanes. The sun finally came out for the final hour or so of the day - the final photograph was taken at the bus stop.

Saturday, July 22, 2017


The weather today turned out to be pretty much as forecast, raining until noon followed by three or four hours of brighter periods, and then showers after which time we were heading back north in the car. 

I've only ever been to Derby maybe four or five times previously and have never visited the combined museum and art gallery, and the Silk Mill. The museum/art gallery was nothing special and there was nothing to see at the Silk Mill apart from an exhibition related to the 'Weeping Window' display of remembrance poppies.

The journey down to Derby didn't go exactly to plan. We stopped off at Hardwick  Park hoping to eat our sandwiches before going for a short walk around the lakes. The last time we visited I'm sure it was free to park here, but when I saw it would cost £4 we didn't bother and parked up in a lay-by to eat our lunches.

In order to join the trunk road down to Derby we had to pass through Tibshelf and Alfreton and were delayed in both towns; by the carnival procession at Tibshelf and by cars queueing to enter the supermarket car park at Alfreton.

We had nearly four hours in the city, plenty of time for me to take a few photographs...and enjoy a cream tea in the cathedral cafe.

Although I wasn't particularly impressed by the museum the natural history gallery was quite good; plenty of stuffed animals and mounted skeletons.

I've been inside the cathedral before; today's best shots feature the outside of the building though.

The best of the weather conditions coincided with our visit to the Silk Mill; there were plenty of other people taking photographs of the poppies as I patiently waited my turn for the best angles.

We popped in to half a dozen charity shops on our way back to the car park; I bought a couple of pairs of sturdy hiking trousers, with plenty of pockets with zips or buttons. 

Monday, July 17, 2017

Miller's Dale, Chee Dale, Chelmorton...and Bakewell

I was hurrying to get ready this morning and forgot to pack my transistor radio so that I could listen to the cricket commentary; when I got home it was no surprise to find out that England had been well beaten by teatime...just as I'd been expecting. 

Something else that didn't go quite to plan either; I had planned to visit a new village for me, King Sterndale, but I missed the turn off for the footpath.

Anyhow, I got off the bus at Miller's Dale and walked up the road to reach a footpath that I hadn't used before - one that leads down into Chee Dale.

I passed over a footbridge and spotted a trout in the river; a few minutes later I caught up with a man and we walked and chatted for the next half an hour or so until we reach the cafe at Blackwell Mill. He name was Mike and he's an administrator for the 'Derbyshire Born and Bred' Facebook group -he's invited me to join the group...he's already made me an honorary Derbyshireman. [oops - according to Google no such word exists.] 

We walked down in the valley for half the distance to Blackwell Mill, and the other half higher up on the Monsal Trail - hoping to get some better photographs...I'm not particularly happy with any of mine, but these are the best. We mainly talked about walking and our previous visits to the area; I'd not been in Chee Dale for about seven years, for Mike it was sixty years though. 

Somewhere either just before, or just after Blackwell Mill Cottages, I should have taken a footpath which would have meant that I could reach King Sterndale without having to walk along quite a long stretch of the busy A6 road. Instead I came out on to the road at the car park at Topley Pike and just crossed over the road and headed down the footpath towards Deep Dale; King Sterndale will have to wait for another time. This footpath was quite difficult in places, as difficult as walking in Chee Dale...which has quite a reputation for being difficult in certain conditions.

I arrived at the main road at the head of Deep Dale and then took the first of the footpaths across the fields to Chelmorton where I stopped for a drink with the locals at the Church Inn...there were several other humorous displays featuring scarecrows in the village.

It was an easy walk up and over the fields to the bus stop at Blackwell Lane End; it took me a lot less time than I thought it would and I arrived twenty  minutes before the TransPeak bus was due. After only five minutes one arrived though, the driver explained that he was forty minutes late. The problems in Manchester had certainly worked to my advantage, meaning that I had a few minutes to spare in I took some photographs of Bath Gardens, right next to the bus stop which the Sheffield bus departs from.

Monday is market day at Bakewell and the single decker bus was already standing room only when we set off. When we reached Chatsworth House not everyone could get on - fortunately there was another bus due in five minutes going back to Sheffield, but calling at Bakewell first.