Saturday, 13 March 2010

There's always Hope

Good morning, and it looks like it's going to be another lovely day again. I am not going far this weekend because Henry choc lab is coming for a sleepover, so I am getting on with this post before he comes bounding through the front door wanting lots of fuss and attention.

Sorry I didn't get to post yesterday, I went on another excursion. I set off for Derbyshire even though the weather wasn't particularly pleasant. A bit overcast, drizzly, and gloomy. Going through Sheffield I thought about giving up as the rain drowned everyone going to work, but I carried on through Hathersage and Bamford, and parked at Hope outside this lovely church. The rain had eased off by the time I was ready to set off for my walk.

I had it in mind to gain a bit of height today, but it looked like the weather was not going to allow me any fantastic views. Oh well, you never know, the misty clouds might lift, and the sun might just show it's face, I live in Hope, ha ha. I took a path out of the village towards Lose Hill and met an elderley couple walking in the opposite direction. Most walkers are cheerfull and it was lovely to spend a few minutes chatting to this sprightly couple. They told me they are in their late seventies, live in Sheffield, and come walking three times a week. I hope I am doing the same when I reach their age, wonderfull stuff. They seemed quite knowledgeble about the area and pointed out Mam Tor, quite a big hill. I thought, that's where I will be heading for.

This is one of many stiles to cross, you can see Lose Hill in the distance. The rain started again and I stopped to put my waterproof over trousers on, which immediately inflated with the wind whipping around me. I looked up to the heavens and shouted, 'now rain all you like because I don't care, I am ready, and I'm going up there', ha ha.

Onward and upward, head down, one step at a time. I was in my own little world thinking there was only me daft enough to do this, when something caught my attention in the corner of my eye. I glanced sideways to see a young twenty something woman in skimpy sports gear, pony tail dancing in the wind, picking her way over the rocks and grass. She was running like the wind towards the top. After that I saw quite a few other people, I definately wasn't alone.

Here I am almost at the top, it would have been a lovely view, if........

Here is the top of Lose Hill. The wind and rain were buffeting me from the side, thank goodness I had this stone to hold on to. I didn't dare step too close to the edge. It's a wonder the photo turned out, I couldn't even hold the camera steady.

This is the path away from Lose Hill, looking towards Mam Tor. It looks neat and tidy doesn't it. Some of the badly eroded sections have been repaired and replaced with large stone slabs. Mam Tor is lost in the mist. Just as I was setting off again another lone walker appeared. He looked a big bloke so I asked if I could walk with him for a while across the exposed top, as I was in fear of being blown off. Well that was my excuse anyway:0) He was a pleasant chap. I let him go on alone after about fifteen minutes as he was in training for an endurance walk, and I didn't want to hold him back. I know how seriously these fitness fanatics take their walking.

At last it was beginning to brighten up a bit and I caught a glimpse of the highest peak, Mam Tor. You can see it at the top of the picture, it's still got a bit of snow left on it. I stopped at this big rock for a bite to eat, as it gave some shelter from the wind. You can see a line of walkers coming along. When I set off again I passed them all, having lunch in a sheltered spot behind those trees.

This is the view I had as I had my lunch, beautiful isn't it?

Off I went again, the weather is getting better.

Some nice views on each side, a little bit of sun, lighting up the wonderful tapestry below me.

A little bit of blue sky.

Mam Tor is getting closer now. I let two walkers overtake me, their chattering was irritating. As far as I'm concerned the only way to enjoy this spiritual place is to be completely alone with nature. I'm not religious, but this is God's heaven.

Getting closer, this stone marks Hollins Cross. It's a place where many footpaths meet, there is a quick way down to the bottom from here.

Now I'm in a quandry, do I take the grassy cycle path or the foot path? It doesn't matter, they run along side each other. I choose to walk on the cycle path, easier on the knees and boots.

Whew! Here I am, arrived at the top. I didn't take any more pictures because I have already taken enough, and any more would have been the same.

Nobody up here, so I took a picture of myself.

To complete my anti clockwise big circle on the map, I descended at this point, and set off in a southerly direction, over Windy Knoll, across the fields, crossing Limestone Way, and heading towards Bradwell. I skirted around a limestone quarry, and took a path which went alongside a massive works. There was huge buildings and sheds on both sides, a tall chimney which dominated the skyline, and enclosed conveyor belts crossing the path overhead. The monotonous droning of the machinery was in complete contrast to the stillness I had just left behind. I wondered how the people living in the houses close by could live with this noise in the background every minute of every day. I shouldn't complain, we have to be gratefull for the jobs it gives to people. At least they had marked out the footpath to make getting past it easy.

A short walk back into Hope, and I was ready to leave at ten past five. Total distance walked - 10.25 miles. Timed just right to call in at Tesco on the way in, and get my reduced price shopping. I also had a £6 off voucher on a £40 spend, so I went round with pen and paper adding up as I filled my trolley. Got some smashing bargains, so I'm happy.


  1. What amazing countryside! I love it up north... next year I plan to do some serious walking!

  2. Hey Ilona! Just read your walk report on mam Tor. good stuff aint it. And when you see Helvellyn, you wil be in another dimension :) I so hope you have glorious sunshine on that day,the 13th :)


  3. Once again you amaze me with your stamina and those fantastic pictures. How could you find the energy after such a long walk to do a shopping trip as well? Superwoman could cut herself a slice from that, I think. Just fantastic! Thanks for sharing.

  4. Thanks for the pictures and keep taking them!


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