Friday, 18 February 2011


WHAT a result today was - the weather was a diamond in the week. It was either wet, or misty, or both on all the other days, but on our Tuesday off - it was PERFECT! I decided to take us to Padley Gorge and the edges above on this glorious day. With all the recent rains, there should be a lot of water coming down Burbage brook (which runs down the gorge). When we stepped outside the cottage, this is what greeted us in the garden border - our first snowdrops!
Spring is here - OFFICIAL!

We again started late, but each week was giving us a few more precious minutes of light, so I wasn't too concerned. We parked at Grindleford station (home of the famous cafe ) and walked down to the start of the gorge. Grindleford and Padley chapel in
particular, have a LOT of history to them. Read some of it here;
Here's a shot of the lower brook, tumbling over rocks.
The woods had that lovely, bright, clear spring light filtering through them.
The moss on the rocks seemed to glow today.
The small bridge, which affords a crossing of the brook, should you need it. We stayed on the right bank though as we climbed higher towards the head of the gorge.
Lots and lots of beautiful water features are in this dale. It's so accessible, almost anyone could get to this part.

They've added this new footbridge (this place is VERY popular with day trippers and picnickers from Sheffield in the hot summer months). I LOVE the way they've used shaped and 'gnarly' wood to construct it - makes it look a LOT more charming and rustic. There's a small footbridge further up which is just planks nailed together. Not nice.
As we left the confines of the gorge, we walked onto open country. We headed up to the top of Burbage rocks edge. On the way, we saw this unfinished stone trough. This, in a garden centre, would be worth about £600. It had a very bad crack in it, but I'm not sure if that happened when it was being made (it often did with these thing, as they are so weakened by the working), or if ice had done the damage since. Whatever, it makes for nice foreground in a picture.
Carl Wark (iron age fort) and Higger Tor in the background.
Looking along the sweep of Burbage rocks to Stanage edge.
Sue, just making sure where we are!
The view across the Edale valley to the great ridge.
A quiet 'whoosh' overhead as this paraglider passed over us (he gave us a wave).
We left Stanage edge down this very ancient track, worn by many, many feet and hooves.
If stones could talk!
Here's why Stanage is a favourite with the climbing fraternity.
Some of the most famous climbers in the world have cut their teeth on these slabs.
Looking back along the impressive rock edge.

We passed the famous 'North Lees Hall' where Charlotte Bronte once stayed while she wrote 'Jayne Eyre'.
Find out more about it here;
If you like, you can even stay at the hall;
We trod in Bronte's footsteps as we made our way towards Hathersage church.
How ancient does this fabulous cobbled path up to the church look?
Time was waning, but we still had a way to go to get back to the car at Grindleford.
The sun began to set behind the ridge - time to up the pace!

The last 45 minutes was in semi-darkness. We passed this collection of old millstones about 1/2 mile from the car.
A very satisfying and lovely day.


  1. Beautiful photos. I've seen the first snowdrops local to me this week too. Crocuses and daffodils are just popping up now and will be opening soon.

    I love Padley Gorge. We haven't been since the summer but I look forward to going back there soon! I agree with you about the rustic charm of the bridge. I saw a really lovely one in the Friends of the Peak magazine a while ago, quite similar to the one pictured, which had won an award for being eco friendly and for its design.

  2. Padley Gorge is always a winner with our family - the kids call it "The Chip Butty Walk" - as it always includes a trip to the cafe. xxxx

  3. I haven't been in the cafe for YEARS - maybe I should, & try one of the buttys!