Sunday, 8 July 2012

Training Walk White to Dark Day 2 01.07.12

Today was a day I approached with excitement and a small amount of trepidation.  I knew I was going to miss Dave's company on the walk, but I was really excited about bagging Stanadge Edge and seeing the views from the top of Win Hill.

Here are some pictures from the day :-

The view as I started my walk across the fields towards Hathersage.

The walk across farmland and through grassy fields was fun, with some mild ascents and descents.  I could soon see Stanadge Edge in the distance, and the imposing edifice got closer and closer as the path became steeper and steeper.  Sheep crossed the path as I came out of the trees and made my way across the last road before the Edge itself.

Animal enjoys the view from just below Stanadge Edge.

I kept stopping on the way up as the sun was shining and the views were epic, and it seemed like the whole of the peak district was opening up behind me.  After much huffing and puffing I made it up onto Stanadge Edge itself.  As soon as I broke over the top of the edge the wind hit me.  I consulted the map and quickly decided on my path.  It was at this point that the wind really got up, the temperature dropped and the rain set in (you know, that fine rain that soaks you through).  This rain accompanied me for pretty much the whole of the rest of the day.

As I made my way along the edge I decided to walk down to the path which runs just beneath the edge itself to take some shelter from the weather.  As I walked along I spotted hundreds of millstones, dotted about the landscape.  I had read that the edge was used a quarry for millstones in the 18th century and these must have been left when the quarry stopped production.  It was certainly an unusual sight as they were scattered about all over the place!

One millstone near here had been turned into a picnic table!

I also passed groups of what must have been DofE kids climbing the side of the edge.  The walk down off Stanadge Edge was long and more difficult than I thought it would be.  The weather, coupled with the extremely boggy ground meant it took a long time to get to the road.  Once on the road I met up with dad and sat in his dry and warm car to eat some lunch.  By the time I got down to Ladybower Reservoir the rain had cleared and the walk round the lake side and across the dam wall was very pleasant.  I could see Win Hill in the distance.

Win Hill ahead - last summit of the trail!
The trek up Win Hill was easy to follow but was the steepest trail of the walk, and with the wet conditions making it slippy, I had to take my time.  The forest broke near the summit and a stepped path led up to a craggy peak steep on all sides.  You could see for miles, and as I took it all in I could see the cloud descending and the spit spot of rain heading my way!  The wind whipped round me as I took in the view for a brief minute before heading off the top and making my way down the path.  The weather had closed in again just as I made it to the peak and the views were rapidly disappearing.

The path down from Win Hill was so steep in parts that I was not sure I could make it down without sliding down on my bottom!  I regretted deeply not bringing my walking poles, but carried on cautiously making my way down until I hit the road just outside Hope.  Then it was just a case of walking the road (which was ankle deep in water in some places) until I made it to the agreed rendezvous with my Dad at the Cheshire Cheese Pub on Edale Road.

We both enjoyed a well earned pint, before packing up and making our way back home.

Find the route plan for today's walk here White to Dark Day 2 Route Plan

Thanks to Dad for the bacon and eggs each morning and thanks to Dave for his support and excellent map reading skills! 

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