Saturday, 24 November 2012

Calendar girl.

We turned over from October to November on the calendar, and there was a lovely autumnal scene around Ladybower. Sue decided that was where she'd like to go for our next walk, so I wrote the walk, and off we went. This was our first walk in Derbyshire for about five weeks, due to holidays, work commitments etc, so we were raring to go!
I decided to park on the viaduct to jig the walk start round a little. I usually park further up the reservoir. This is looking up Ladybower.
 We crossed the road, and immediately took the path up towards Crookhill farm. I really was hoping to see some mushrooms today, edible if possible, as the conditions were damp, BUT I had heard that it wasn't a good year for fungi. 
 After the initial steepness, the path eased a little. Looking back, we could see Bamford edge looking larger. This is a SUPER edge if you want pictures of the reservoir.
The twin peaks of Crook hill could be seen to our left. 
Looking back to Crook hill's distinctive peaks. 

 After all the recent wet weather, the going underfoot wad decidedly squidgy!
 We topped the rise, and took the path that runs alongside the wood. This area used to have terrible damage from four wheel drive vehicles and motorbikes, but since they were excluded, the path has recovered a lot. The view left was of the iconic lose hill to Mam tor ridge, part of the Castleton skyline walk.
 This time of the year, you can always count on gorse to add a splash of colour to an otherwise drab scene.
 We turned right to pass Lockerbrook farm and got our first glimpse of the reservoir since staring the walk. Normally, I would turn right, and go down through the woods to the Fairholme visitor centre, but that was the reason for parking in a different place - today we headed straight on, into the woods - a path I'd not walked before.
 One of my favourite photographic subjects - fungi. We'd not seen any of the edible variety, but this was a lovely bunch anyway.

 I also spotted this impressive, new bracket on a tree trunk.
 We were a week or two too late for the really splendid colours, but as the leaves had mostly fallen now, we had a warm, copper carpet to walk on.

 Just before we reached the valley and clearing, a Chinook helicopter flew by at ground level. One more minute, and I'd have got a video! We were now walking on level ground beside the Howden reservoir.
This trunk was suffering a full on attack by fungi, and it wouldn't be long before it crumbled down to earth. It looks like a grasping hand, reaching out of the ground,

Looking back to Howden dam, with water spilling over it.

 .....and forward to the Derwent dam towers
 The mighty Derwent dam. The water was rushing over Howden dam when we passed it, but it was barely trickling over the Derwent. The reservoir is brim-full, JUST.
 I usually only take photo's 'as is', but this one made a lovely subject for a sepia shot. It sort of gives the mood of this dreary, cold, damp time of they year.
 Something that we've only seen recently in the Peak District - hedge layering. Ingenious, the tall saplings are bent and chopped, and amazingly, they continue to grow, but horizontally! Less maintenance, and a thick cover for birds to nest in.
 We chose to cross to the 'quiet' side of Ladybower. It was a serene scene as we walked on the fallen leaves, the day all to ourselves.
 But, with the light fading, we reached the car. 
Looking up to Bamford, brooding over us as we left to go home. 
Our first walk for a while, and a really good day. Not bright, but dry, and for that, we were grateful.

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