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Monday, 24 February 2014

Derwent Dam and the Fairholmes Viaduct

My sister had been up to the dam in the week and said the water was pouring over the top, so we decided to go and have a look.
It was Geoff's turn to drive and we got there just after 08:00, parked up in the free car park and went down to the dam wall via the Fairholmes visitor centre. Well the dam wall was wet but no water running over the top.
We had seen a sign for nature walk near the Fairholmes Centre so we walked around that and then up some steep steps to the west tower of the Derwent Dam. We decided to have an early breakfast and sat beside the memorial to TIP the sheepdog. Tip's master had died on Howden Moor and he stayed with his body for 15 weeks right through the winter until they were found. Tip was very week but had survived and was found just feet away from his master.
After our breakfast we found a footpath which took us along the route of the old Bamford to Howden railway track. Running alongside this was a concrete water channel which took water into the dam. Being curious we had to follow this for a while and ended up climbing a fence to eventually seeing the water channel disappear into a tunnel in the mountain. At this point we turned around and headed back towards the car. We eventually came across the old railway route and Geoff told us about the wooden viaduct that spanned over this ravine. It was then straight back to the car.

The pipeline over Ladybower  Reservoir

East Tower of Howden Dam

Ike, Rob & Geoff with friend

Bloody big mole

Large leafy table

Nice view towards the Ladybower Res

Steps up to the west tower

Howden Dam

Memorial to Tip the sheepdog

The natives were getting hungry

Geoff on the old railway route

Novel carving on a signpost

Water channel carrying water down to the Howden Reservoir

Mini fungi on this tree


This is where the water channel disappears into the mountain

Beech woodlands

This is where the Fairholmes Viaduct  crossed over this ravine.
This is what the Fairholmes Viaduct  looked like

Foundation blocks for the Fairholmes viaduct

Ashopton Bridge
This was a very interesting walk off the cuff when we went investigating the source of that water channel.
Even Geoff hadn't been up there. Nice to have all 4 of us back after Rob had been away to Cuba.
see you next week

Monday, 17 February 2014

Cavendish Mill & The Starling Murmuration site

I had recently heard about the murmuration of the starlings at a site near Cavendish Mill on Middleton Moor so we decided to just go and find the site with the intention of revisiting one evening to see the murmuration.
Just 3 of us again this week and we set off in my car at 07:40 and arrived in Cavendish Mill just about 08:15.
We were the only car in the car park and just set off looking for a footpath to the site. The sign at the car park entrance was very encouraging and proved we were somewhere near. 2 weeks ago i heard about this place and the chap had described where to go and even the situation around the gate that we should enter onto the site. We quickly found this gate and again it was signposted so it was all systems go.
Sign on the car park entrance

We were the only car in the car park

This sheep took a fancy to Ike and was giving him the eye.



This was the footpath leading up to a bird hide

That sheep kept following Ike

View from the dam wall with my car in the car park

Ike now had a fan club following him!!!

This is part of the Cavendish Mill complex where fluorspar mineral ores are processed.

Some huge machinery in the grounds 


Geoff and Ike being followed by there shadows

Part of the land around the Cavendish Mill complex

One of the boulders showing signs of fossils 

Views from the top of the site

Is this fluorspar covering one of the rocks

Geoff took this while we travelling down into Stoney Middleton with one of the gritstone edges on the horizon.
This was just a short walk primarily just to find out where the starlings roost but it turned out quite interesting roaming around the footpaths surrounding the Cavendish Mill complex. The wind was howling a bit on the top levels and it was very cold. If anyone is going to visit this place you need wellies in some sections, our boots just disappeared into the sodden ground.
See you next week.

Monday, 10 February 2014

Black Rocks, The Midshire's Way and Bolehill

Only 3 of us this week and after a discussion whether we should go or not because of the rain we decided on a short trip up to Black Rocks. We parked just beside the cemetery and walked up through the main car park onto the trail. It's a walk Geoff had planned but we could get g=caught out with some muddy tracks. We just followed the trail until we got half way down the Sheep pasture Incline that leads to the High Peak Junction. The track is closed for a section of about 100 yards due to the support wall collapsing  We joined the Mid Shire's Way at this point which took us over Cromford Moor to the B5035 at Longway Bank.
This was a steady incline past Wigwell Grange to the crossroads at the Malt Shovel.Inn. After we got to the Malt Shovel the rain started again and tha'ts where i decided to put my camera away.Heading back towards Black Rocks we turned off at Stoney Hill and walked down through Little Bolehull. This is part of the walk that Geoff had never been on. From there it was back to the car where we had our breakfast before heading home.

Old structures at the entrance to the car park

Old stone trough

Massive stone slabs on the High Peak Trail

Sheep Pasture Engine House

An old derrick crane on the Sheep Pasture Incline

Geoff & Ike 

Just follow the yellow brick road!!!

Mud, Mud, glorious mud.

Believe it or not there is an old farm wagon under this lot

We were being watched as we moooved past this cow shed.

Old mile post

Just wondered if this had been a toll house with that odd bay window

This must be the Wigwell coat of arms

Wigwell Grange in the background

Another one for a bit of TLC.

It was a grey and miserable morning, we got wet  but we made the most of it and will do this one again when Rob can join us and the weather is kinder.
See you next week